[Libreoffice] Calc usability improvements

Patrick Bakker pabos at glypsube.org
Thu Nov 11 23:30:25 PST 2010

On Thu, Nov 11, 2010 at 9:31 PM, Kevin Hunter <hunteke at earlham.edu> wrote:
> At 8:21pm -0500 Thu, 11 Nov 2010, Patrick Bakker wrote:
>> Current Calc behaviour:
>> =subtotal(9;a1:a5)
>> Desired behaviour:
>> =subtotal(9,a1:a5)
> I believe OpenOffice has supported both semicolon and comma since at least
> 3.0.  Take a look at Tools->Options->Calc->Formula.

I thought I had downloaded LibreOffice but I guess I haven't yet. I'm
running OpenOffice 3.2.0 here and I don't have a Tools -> Options - >
Calc -> Formula.

>> The delete cell "helper" dialog box pops up anytime I try to delete
>> a cell or cell selection. It gives me options to delete some
>> combination of text / numbers / date& time / formulas / notes /
>> formats / objects. Occassionally this is useful. For regular use,
>> however, I just want the value of the cell deleted.
> This is perhaps not the most intuitive, but the behavior parallels that of
> at least 2 operating systems user interface choices:
> One one OS:
> - If you select a file and hit Del key, it says "Hey!  Are you sure?!"
> - If you select a file and hit Shift+Del, it doesn't ask.
> Another OS:
> - Del key moves it to the trash.
> - Shift+Del permanently removes the file right then.
> Same idea, but slightly different UI experience.
> I've gotten into the habit of pressing Shift+Del myself, but I agree it was
> annoying until I figured that out.  Rather than change that default, what
> about putting some simple text in that dialog box, along the lines of "Tip:
> if you want the default action, press Shift+Del."

I didn't know about the Shift + Delete keystroke which helps. Having
two work around the easiest keystroke still feels wrong - especially
with undo/redo capability. The most common action should map to the
simplest keybinding I would think.

>> The first time I copy and pasted a cell formula into another cell
>> which already had something in it a dialog came up asking something
>> like "This cell already has a value. Are you sure you want to do copy
>> a new value in?" EXTREMELY annoying. So annoying that I skipped past
>> it for the first few days without seeing the "Show this dialog"
>> checkbox. Once I saw the option to hide the dialog I did so and I
>> don't know how to get it back to quote exactly what it says. I can't
>> really think of any reason for this dialog to exist at all but at
>> least it can be dismissed so its not quite so bad as the delete
>> dialog. Still would anybody object if I submitted a patch to kill it?
> Heh.  With the power of Ctrl+Z at my fingertips, I agree that that dialog
> box could be seen as an annoyance.  However, I have witnessed many times, a
> less than power-user bless that dialog so they didn't overwrite their data.
>  In this light, I wouldn't be opposed to it's removal, provided LO informs
> the user when they have copied over data, and reminds them that they can
> undo the action.
> A less obtrusive method of informing them would be nice.  Something akin to
> Firefox's dropdown bar, or IE's information bar would do nicely, I think.

Yeah, I don't see the value in this warning at all but if it is useful
at all to anybody I would think a less obtrusive, after the fact quiet
notification that existing date was overwritten would make more sense
to me.

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