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Re: "What's This?" in Describe submenu

From: Luc Teirlinck
Subject: Re: "What's This?" in Describe submenu
Date: Mon, 22 Aug 2005 17:59:42 -0500 (CDT)

Richard Stallman wrote:

   Let's just find out the facts about the latest version of Windows,
   and then I'll decide what to do.

I do not use MS Windows, but from looking at the website Lennart
mentioned, it appears that Microsoft still supports the "What's this?"
feature under that name.  I do not know how relevant that is if most
MS Windows users do not know about it, or never use it.  It is also
obvious from that website that the feature is very different from what
describe-key does.  So referring to describe-key as "What's this"
would, to me, seem much more likely to confuse MS Windows or KDE
users, rather than helping them.

An MS Windows application that _wants_ to support "What's This" can do
so by doing one or more of:

1. Adding it at top level of the Help menu.
2. Binding the feature to S-F1
3. Adding a clickable picture of an arrow and a question mark to the toolbar.
4. Adding a clickable picture of a question mark to the title bar.

as well as by some additional means.

Unlike the KDE situation where (1) and (2) apparently are done
automatically even for KDE applications that do not support the
"What's This" feature at all (which is very confusing), Microsoft
seems to leave all of (1) through (4) to the discretion of individual
application (_if_ I understood the website correctly).  So not all MS
Windows applications may have the feature.  Maybe very few do.  (I can
not check that.)

Clearly, the above is just my personal interpretation of Microsoft's

        I've used Windows for about ten years.  I don't remember ever seeing
       a "What's This" message.
        I just checked Visual Studio .NET, Microsoft Office, and Internet
       Explorer. Can't find it.

   That is peculiar.  Yet others have just said that What's This is
   indeed used in Windows.

There is no contradiction there.  (See above.)

In as far as KDE is concerned, apparently most KDE applications do not
support the "What's This" feature at all.  Even those applications
have a key binding and a menu item, but they are no-ops except for
their graphical effects.



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