[Libreoffice-ux-advise] Toolbar look improvement (toolbar option button removal)

Jan Holesovsky kendy at suse.cz
Mon Jun 13 01:11:24 PDT 2011

Hi Christoph, Cor,

Thank you for the feedback!

On 2011-06-11 at 23:25 +0200, Christoph Noack wrote:

> I know that people complained from time to time that the gradient looked
> quite awful on some platforms, but I never heard "active" complaints
> about its behavior. Of course, it doesn't mean anything at the
> moment ...

Yes - I is not that big an issue, OTOH, I think people might appreciate
the nicer look ;-)

> But (a huge but) we should prepare for _serious_ noise if we remove the
> option buttons. Especially since we break with Microsoft Office 2003
> (Windows) behavior, and we have impact on the usability for
> close-to-no-context-menus platforms like Mac OS X.

I guess that similarity to 2003 will not be that a big issue; 2003 comes
from the days when the UX had a trend of overwhelming the users with the
possibilities to configure just everything.  Today, I see the trend of
giving the user maximum of the workplace for her/his work, with minimum
distraction - and at least for me, these buttons are distracting :-)

> By the way, my only complaint is the next/previous "navigation" toolbar
> that really breaks the look/feel/behavior.

This is orthogonal to my change; I mean, I did not do anything about
them with my change, they are just there by default in master
(towards-3.5 branch).  You are right we should do something about them
too, but let's treat that separately.

> So, I do have two proposals to solve these inconsistencies - but I'm
> still unsure whether people will (more than) complain. Touching this
> functionality gives a 50/50 chance for improvement/non-improvement.
> Proposal 1: Based on your proposal ...
>       * In all cases, keep the context menu as it is today (e.g. show
>         the remaining items if the toolbar cannot be fully shown and
>         hides some items).
>       * Docked toolbar, sufficient space: (like you proposed)
>       * Docked toolbar, limited space:
>               * remove the toolbar options
>               * keep the items being shown due to limited space for the
>                 usual toolbar
>               * remove the downwards triangle
>               * center the double-arrow (>>) that indicates items are
>                 hidden
>       * Floating toolbar: Remove the triangle to access the options
>         menu.

Sounds good to me, thank you!  Since what I have done is half-way there,
would it be OK for you to let the rest as an Easy Hack?  I mean, I think
that after my change, it is "good enough" (TM) and I can/will easily do
the removal of the downwards triangle and center the double-arrow (>>),
but the rest is slightly more work [not _that_ much, but because the
same menu is currently used for the context (right-click) menu, and for
the "more" functionality, the code will need to do a bit more handling
of these two possibilities].

> Proposal 2: If the current proposal mainly relates to the visual noise
> the current option button causes, then ...
>       * We might adapt this button to be less visible (I have some ideas
>         ranging from "less saturated colors" to "mouseover animation").
>       * Fix the forward/backward (navigation) toolbar to be less
>         distracting as well. (No ideas yet, since I don't know what it
>         is currently used for).

I like 1) more ;-)

> By the way, I noticed that we do not conform to Windows standards - our
> floating toolbar titles do not react on right-clicks to open the
> corresponding context menu, see [4].
> [4] http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa511500.aspx#paletteWindows

Sounds like one more Easy Hack :-)

> Sorry for the long reply, but changes with regard to menus and toolbars
> are something that caused quite some noise in the past ;-)

Sure - that's why ask for feedback in the first place :-)

Thank you,

More information about the Libreoffice-ux-advise mailing list