[RFC] Fixing the Desktop Menu Specification.

Peter Brett peter at peter-b.co.uk
Wed Nov 9 08:54:48 PST 2011

Vincent Untz <vuntz at gnome.org> writes:
> Le mercredi 09 novembre 2011, à 15:57 +0000, Peter TB Brett a écrit :
>> All conforming implementations of the desktop specification (that I am
>> aware of) display *only* the Main Categories unless explicitly
>> configured otherwise.  Any application that fails to include one of
>> the Main Categories in its .desktop file is (at best) shown in a "Lost
>> and Found" virtual category, or not displayed at all.
> This could be fixed by changing the applications.menu shipped by the
> various people; I'm not entirely sure adding a new main category will
> help since it won't automatically lead to it being used in
> applications.menu, but we could try.
> Alternatively, or in addition to that, we could suggest a default
> applications.menu in the spec.

I think the very minimum changes that the specification needs are:

* Stop requiring every .desktop file to include a Main Category.

* Add some language that requires desktop environments to display
  .desktop files that don't include a Main Category but that would
  otherwise be displayed. (Does that make sense?)

>> Or will someone finally propose a way out of this situation?
> Maybe we can start with a proposal and discuss it? Even if it was
> discussed in the past, time has passed and people might have a different
> opinion now.

I think the problem is that, at the moment, the Main Categories are
assumed by the specification to form a complete ontology, but they

Here's an idea: instead of having separate Main Categories and
Additional Categories, why not simply have a list of Suggested
Categories and a recommended algorithm for determining which ones to
display, based on frequency of occurrence?  Is that plausible?


Peter Brett <peter at peter-b.co.uk>
Remote Sensing Research Group
Surrey Space Centre

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