Customizable Menubar ?

Ideas for improvements and requests for new features in XnView MP

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tboy
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Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 11:44 pm

Customizable Menubar ?

Post by tboy » Tue Oct 08, 2013 12:39 pm

1. Is it possible menubar to be customizable ?
Now it occupies entire row and is locked, this is wasted space. If toolbar can be placed in same row with menubar will be better, or at least to allow adding buttons and commands in menubar next to default menu.

2. I use tree view with vertical tabs. Double click on empty space next to tabs can be used to collapse/restore the tree-view pane (only tabs to stay visible when collapsed).

3. Free the size of thumbnails - for example I use portrait proportion not supported now without editing ini file, but this makes resize slider useless for me.

4. Small toolbar (filelist toolbar) have to be customizable too.

In general, more customization is better.

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m.Th.
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Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by m.Th. » Sat Oct 12, 2013 3:53 pm

tboy wrote:1. Is it possible menubar to be customizable ?
Now it occupies entire row and is locked, this is wasted space. If toolbar can be placed in same row with menubar will be better, or at least to allow adding buttons and commands in menubar next to default menu.
Istm that you don't want exactly a customizable menu but rather to have the main menu in a toolbar in order to use the entire space available. Usually this can be achievable with more or less effort (I don't know how Qt handles this) but the general GUI design rules strongly discourage this behavior. While it can be nice, it can confuse users. See, even if Internet Explorer, in which the Coolbars appeared (the name of the first docking engine which supported this) doesn't use them in this way. Perhaps, if it is easy to implement, one could do a try but definitely the default configuration should be the classical one (ie. the menu bar to occupy by itself an entire row). Also, I'm thinking now that there are much more important things to do...


2. I use tree view with vertical tabs. Double click on empty space next to tabs can be used to collapse/restore the tree-view pane (only tabs to stay visible when collapsed).
Not discoverable. Also, very hard to implement. The standard way is to use a splitter with maximize/minimize buttons on it (sometimes called Netscape Splitter). Pierre has it in the main version of the XnView.

3. Free the size of thumbnails - for example I use portrait proportion not supported now without editing ini file, but this makes resize slider useless for me.
Do you mean thumbnail proportions? ...because the size is "free".

If yes, then yes. :) ...it would be nice to have some predefined proportions for the thumbnails and also to have the possibility to adjust them. However, this could make the program slower.


4. Small toolbar (filelist toolbar) have to be customizable too.

In general, more customization is better.
...hmmm.... mhmmmm.... mmmm... You are not a programmer, isn't it? :)

The biggest strategic problem of any IT system is complexity management.

We need to find a fine line between features and program stability because we need to be in business and to have the lights on tomorrow in order to continue to help you. :)
m. Th.

The Ascetic Experience - The best photos and texts from Holy Mountain (Athos)

- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.90 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -

tboy
Posts: 98
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 11:44 pm

Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by tboy » Sun Oct 13, 2013 2:27 am

m.Th. wrote:
Istm that you don't want exactly a customizable menu but rather to have the main menu in a toolbar in order to use the entire space available. Usually this can be achievable with more or less effort (I don't know how Qt handles this) but the general GUI design rules strongly discourage this behavior. While it can be nice, it can confuse users. See, even if Internet Explorer, in which the Coolbars appeared (the name of the first docking engine which supported this) doesn't use them in this way. Perhaps, if it is easy to implement, one could do a try but definitely the default configuration should be the classical one (ie. the menu bar to occupy by itself an entire row). Also, I'm thinking now that there are much more important things to do...
m.Th. thank you.
Menubar is customizable in CorelDraw for example.
Customization is done by the users that know how to do it, that's why it can NOT "confuse users". "Reset" button can be in help for confused users too.
You are right - menu can be added as toolbar button too, similar to the "Firefox button", or "Office button" in MS-office.

....there are much more important things to do...

interface is not unimportant, is it?

...The standard way is to use a splitter with maximize/minimize buttons on it (sometimes called Netscape Splitter).....

I use this splitter button often in standard version (in the middle of the height of the splitter bar- yes ?? ), but I dont see it in xnViewMP. Now i can show/hide tree-pane only by the menu or toolbar button. I think double-click on tabs or empty tab area can simplify the show/hide action. Even single click on "folder" tab is not in use for now.

....You are not a programmer, isn't it?
I'm not a programer, but there are a lot of programs - customizable, stable and useful, you know this.
Customization is important, xnView is customizable, that's one of the reasons we like it so much.
I'm trying to add some ideas to make it even better in MP version.


Here is how my menubar looks in xnView-standard. It is made with Resource editor....
mymenu.jpg
mymenu.jpg (45.39 KiB) Viewed 733 times


P.S.
m.Th., I see this in your signature:
- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.61 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -
Is this another "Dark theme" for xnViewMP and where to find it ?

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XnTriq
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Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by XnTriq » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:15 am


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m.Th.
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Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by m.Th. » Sun Oct 13, 2013 7:58 am

Menubar is customizable in CorelDraw for example.
As well in Corel Photo-Paint, MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access etc. the entire LibreOffice, the entire Apache Office, some from Adobe's programs (eg. Photoshop)... :)

However, you spoke about the need of menu customisation because you wanted to have the menu on the same line with other "things" (buttons etc.).

IMHO, as I said, your need can be easier covered by putting the menu in a toolbar. Having a full menu customization engine can be harder to write than a toolbar one because one should be allowed to add/delete/move items in a tree. Also, usually the GUI frameworks come with a ready-made end-user toolbar editor which the programmer can just use whereas an end-user menu editor should be written from scratch.
Customization is done by the users that know how to do it, that's why it can NOT "confuse users". "Reset" button can be in help for confused users too.
:) Almost everyone thinks that he know how to do it. But reality is different. That's why we seldom see 1.) changed menu layouts in programs which support it and 2.) such requests in the programs which doesn't support it.

Also, btw, from the entire market segment at which XnViewMP targets which do you think that's the percentage of the users who need a menu customization engine before a solid on-disk AND in database management subsystem for the photos?

It all boils down to priorities. I'm not apriori against of menu customization (also I like very much the visual way in which Corel Draw/Photo-Paint handles it) but looking at the Photo Managers market today, the programs which compete here (Lightroom, ACDSee Pro, AfterShot Pro, PhotoSupreme / IDImager, FastStone Viewer, digiKam, RawTherapee, UFRaw, darkTable, Zoner Photo Studio, Picasa, iMatch, IrfanView... ...did I missed anything?) everyone (and his mother) is targeted to provide a better user experience in photo management (first - because viewing has reached more or less at the level of the commodity), editing (second - because there are Photoshop and Lightroom and is quite difficult to penetrate) and viewing.

I am quite reserved that a community will adopt a Photo Manager because it has a customizable menu when it has problems with on-disk primitives (copy/move etc.) and on-db ones (rating/coloring, keywording, searching/filtering etc.). As I said, it all boils down to priorities.
You are right - menu can be added as toolbar button too, similar to the "Firefox button", or "Office button" in MS-office.
Yes, but this is not what I meant. I meant to put the menu in a (draggable) toolbar. Like this:
Menu-as-toolbar.jpg
Menu-as-toolbar.jpg (13.26 KiB) Viewed 716 times
....there are much more important things to do...

interface is not unimportant, is it?
I didn't say that is unimportant I said that "there are much more important things to do". (see above).

Also, we should look at the efficiency of the implementation. If the outcome covers the needs of an extensive area of our user base in a discoverable way by a rather small amount of coding effort, then go for it. Otherwise go there where we can get the most bang for the buck without paying too much technical debt (IOW sacrificing internal architecture, introducing bugs etc.)
...The standard way is to use a splitter with maximize/minimize buttons on it (sometimes called Netscape Splitter).....

I use this splitter button often in standard version (in the middle of the height of the splitter bar- yes ?? ), but I dont see it in xnViewMP. Now i can show/hide tree-pane only by the menu or toolbar button. I think double-click on tabs or empty tab area can simplify the show/hide action. Even single click on "folder" tab is not in use for now.
Double-clicking on tabs, yes (somewhat). But double-clicking should hide only that tab. IMHO we complicate things.

It is much easier and safer to go to classical way by having a Netscape splitter. The solution for Qt is here:

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/8831 ... tons-on-it
....You are not a programmer, isn't it?
I'm not a programer, but there are a lot of programs - customizable, stable and useful, you know this.
"Customizable, stable and useful" - pick two. :D
...sorry I couldn't resist. :)

It is very very hard (read: hard like hell) to have a good QA when your program is very customizable. The QA complexity grows exponentially with each option added. Believe me, I was there (and I dare to say that still I am). However, I don't say that XnViewMP shouldn't be customizable. On contrary. But we must be very careful what to implement in order to not destabilize the beast.
Customization is important, xnView is customizable, that's one of the reasons we like it so much.
I'm trying to add some ideas to make it even better in MP version.
I applaud your intentions. :)
Be my guest. :)


P.S.
m.Th., I see this in your signature:
- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.61 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -
Is this another "Dark theme" for xnViewMP and where to find it ?
In the menu go to View | Theme | Dark Theme and then choose 'Apply' and 'Ok'.
Question: What would happen if I had my own home-made menu layout? :)
m. Th.

The Ascetic Experience - The best photos and texts from Holy Mountain (Athos)

- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.90 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -

tboy
Posts: 98
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 11:44 pm

Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by tboy » Sun Oct 13, 2013 10:25 am

m.Th. wrote: ... I meant to put the menu in a (draggable) toolbar...
I think this is a very good solution, yes !

...What would happen if I had my own home-made menu layout?
I will ask you to share it with us.
And where is your dark theme for XnView 2.00 - (I use minimal zip version of xnView)


BTW - There is a small bug with toolbar positioning.
Drag the toolbar on the left side in vertical position, go to Tools > Settings, make some changes and click OK in settings dialog.
Toolbar will jump into default horizontal position, instead of keeping previously defined vertical position.
(xnViewMP v0.61 on Windows7 x64).

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m.Th.
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Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by m.Th. » Sun Oct 13, 2013 3:54 pm

...What would happen if I had my own home-made menu layout?
You wouldn't understand my path which I've posted:

"In the menu go to View | Theme | Dark Theme and then choose 'Apply' and 'Ok'."

You would have your own menu and you were unable to go on the route which I've pointed to you.

Note that the problem arise (together with many other problems) when we speak about menu customization, and not about using the available space from the right as a Quick Access row of buttons (IOW a Toolbar) like you did in XnView Classic.

Menu means logic layout of commands. Toolbar means quick access. Significant difference.
And where is your dark theme for XnView 2.00 - (I use minimal zip version of xnView)
There is no dark theme in XnView Classic. My sig refers at "Dark Themed XnViewMP". Dark theme is only in XnViewMP.
m. Th.

The Ascetic Experience - The best photos and texts from Holy Mountain (Athos)

- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.90 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -

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m.Th.
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Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by m.Th. » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:16 pm

BTW - There is a small bug with toolbar positioning.
Drag the toolbar on the left side in vertical position, go to Tools > Settings, make some changes and click OK in settings dialog.
Toolbar will jump into default horizontal position, instead of keeping previously defined vertical position.
(xnViewMP v0.61 on Windows7 x64).
...btw, don't bury the thing here. :) Start a new thread for this. Putting many topics in a thread is one of the best ways to get unnoticed.
m. Th.

The Ascetic Experience - The best photos and texts from Holy Mountain (Athos)

- Dark Themed XnViewMP 0.90 64bit & XnView 2.00 x64 on Win7 x64 -

tboy
Posts: 98
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 11:44 pm

Re: Customizable Menubar ?

Post by tboy » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:27 pm

OK m.Th.
I think I understand your arguments, and they are right.
Good solution will be "menu in a (draggable) toolbar" as you show it.
If next to it we can put toolbar - everything will be OK.
And lot of space will be saved.

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