<URL: http://bugs.freeciv.org/Ticket/Display.html?id=40216 >
Forwading to request tracker (and thus creating new ticket) for
storing the patches. We don't want them to get lost and forgotten.
John: If you have something to add, please try to reply to the copy
RT sends to the list.
On 27/04/2008, John Keller wrote:
> First off, just a note as to why I'm writing the list instead of opening
> a ticket: I can open tickets, but the system doesn't let me add any
> comments an existing one (whether I opened it or someone else did). 
> I've made an attempt to restructure the menus in a way that makes sense
> for both new users and old hands. I consider myself a "casual
> old-timer", having played Freeciv for several years, but not every day.
> Apologies in advance for a long email, but I wanted to give some
> background to my thinking behind the attached patches:
> I've always found the long "Orders" menu daunting. Commands found in
> large groups (between dividers), new commands are hard to find when
> they're added, and I expect that new users have a very hard time
> discovering even common commands ("Go to" is sixth down in the fourth
> Having a single, long menu for all unit commands makes it very hard to
> define good accelerators (the underlined letters) which also don't
> conflict with each other. The length also leads to putting commands in
> sub-menus (presumably to avoid making it even longer). But these are
> hard to target with the mouse, and hard to use as a way to discover to
> available commands.
> Some hotkeys require pressing Control and Shift together, a
> hand-twisting exercise for commands that users are likely to use often.
> Even more importantly, it's a hurdle for accessibility.
> Tear-off menus seem like a great idea, but don't beat the simplicity of
> better menu organization and modeless dialog boxes. The typical user
> (even in Linux) aren't going to have encountered them elsewhere, and so
> aren't likely to discover their use. Instead, I hoped to improve the
> situation for everyone and avoid the need for a tear-off menu. The
> exception was the "View" menu, which I would like to revisit in the future.
> The "Game" menu, like the "File" menu in any other program, should
> really be thought of as a meta menu. It should handle the principle
> object (the game) as a black box, rather acting on the the things
> contained within the object. I moved the tax rates and revolution
> commands to the Reports menu; they have much more in common with the
> other items found there. If the "Game" menu were the place for in-game
> commands, then everything could be justifiably be moved there. :-)
> I renamed the "Reports" menu to "Civilization". Freeciv isn't a
> spreadsheet , but this menu roughly corresponds to the "Window" menu
> in many applications: it's a list of tabs and toolkit windows that apply
> to the game as a whole. Using "Window" would help for external
> consistency, but it's too generic. I think "Civilization" does a better
> job of showing that it contains commands that act on a large scale than
> "Reports", which to me implies a set of static reports (the presence of
> the main view alone shows that the menu items aren't static).
> I've only worked on the GTK+ client, since I'm not familiar with any of
> the other clients. I realize that these patches would have an impact on
> the other clients, too (since the help documentation is common to all).
> The patches serve as a proof of concept and, if accepted, my hope is
> that it would be easy for someone else to change the other clients to match.
> I've split my changes into four patches:
> Rearrange the menus
> * split up long "orders" menu
> * try to put commands in small, logical groups
> * move taxes and government to "Reports"
> * avoid cascading submenus
> Change hotkeys and accelerators (2 patches)
> * use "Ctrl" for application control commands, "Shift" for unit commands
> (with the exception of "Upgrade")
> ["revolution", a potentially much more destructive operation than
> "connect with road", is probably a better choice to have a three-key
> * fix a FIXME: paradrop and pollution no longer share the same menu item
> * try to make accelerators consistent with hotkeys
> (without being unnecessarily slavish)
> * update help docs
> * remove tear-off menus (except for "View" menu)
> * fix indentation for menu_items static array
> * normalize use of "_" for menu items in code
> (to help with future search/replace)
> I'd be interested in people's reactions to these patches. Hopefully they
> (or something like them) could eventually make their way into Freeciv.
> - John
>  https://mail.gna.org/public/freeciv-dev/2008-02/msg00122.html
>  http://bugs.freeciv.org/Ticket/Display.html#txn-238668
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