Bill Skaggs wrote:

> The global popup menu is certainly useful; I have used it very  
> often.  The context
> menu for the text tool was introduced as part of on-canvas text  
> editing.  It was
> introduced because on-canvas editing could not work without it --  
> there was no
> reasonable way to access text versions of Copy and Paste and other  
> essential
> commands except by using a context menu.

hoho, when that was discussed I was there and I made it very clear  
that the
only acceptable way to do copy/paste in the text tool is via the  
commands in the Edit menu, with their standard command keys.

Let me also give general guidance on what a right click menu is for,  
its place is in desktop UI systems.

The right click menu is a _secondary_ way to get things done. First of
a primary way has to be UI designed to do something: like an item in
the menu bar (see copy/paste), a tool options item, an on screen widget
(text editing toolbar, a control node on a curve), widgets in dialogs.

Only after the primary way is designed and implemented, is it time to
think what could be in the right click menu. It is an 'acceleration'
mechanism (although I consider it slow and finicky) like command keys,
although more locally targeted. So the choice to make becomes 'what
are the limited number of items that are so important they need to
be also here in this menu?'

One last note to those users who find right click menus incredibly
useful and even perceive using them as fast (note, perceive):
I do not have the numbers whether 30, 40 or an unbelievable
60 percent of users are like you, but it is certainly not more.
So the rest of us is not enjoying using right click menus so much.

And the right attitude towards right click menus is always to try
to solve it in a better way first (see above). SO for instance our
full-screen mode and the menu bar. I am asking myself: could we not
show the menu bar when the mouse sprite is moved against the top
of the screen (after a short, 0.5s, timeout)? fading or sliding
in would be nice...


         founder + principal interaction architect
             man + machine interface works
 : on interaction architecture

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