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Re: No more dodge windows in Unity?


Oh my goodness, did this thread ever get a huge response. I have 36+ emails
to read now, but I'll try and snip the most important points for this

On Wed, Feb 8, 2012 at 6:37 AM, Mark Shuttleworth <mark@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>  On 08/02/12 02:23, Evan Huus wrote:
>  Previously the default was for it to dodge windows - now, it is
> automatically set to never hide. The Appearance->Behaviour settings
> allow configuring always-hide and never-hide, but do not allow
> configuring the old 'dodge windows' method.
> On the assumption that his is intentional (and not a brown-paper-bag
> bug), why? The non-techies who I've set up with Oneiric haven't had
> any trouble grasping the dodge-windows concept,
> In fact, the dodge-windows approach tested very poorly. We thought it
> would work well, tried it, tested it, and have had to evolve from there
> based on evidence.
> If users encounter the dodge by moving windows against the launcher, then
> it is fine. They see that the dodge happens *when* they push the launcher
> away, they discover they can move the window back and the launcher will
> reappear. So far so good.
> Here's the problem. Most users don't discover the dodging by moving a
> window till it touches the launcher. They first encounter it when they
> maximise a window. So, they login to the desktop. Good. They start an app.
> Good. Then they maximise a window, and the launcher "disappears". To these
> users, the behaviour is deeply uncomfortable, random. And these are in fact
> the majority of users.

Thanks for the response, Mark. There isn't much we can do if testing showed
it was a problem. I assume that the raw results of this testing will be
released publicly somewhere (if they haven't been already)?

> It also turns out that users who can work with dodging launchers can also
> work perfectly well with launchers which always hide when not used.

Yes, but we don't have to like it :)

>  So, based on that, we made the following design choices:
>    1. To start with the launcher always visible. This is the least
>    surprising starting position. Nothing happens unless the user commands it.
>     2. To expose an option of having the launcher hide, or be fixed.
>    3. Not to offer a dodge option, because users who don't want it always
>    there are perfectly capable of using it in plain hiding mode, and users who
>    don't know what 'dodge' means don't have to spend time trying to parse it.
> Fair enough, I guess. I wish we could make the 'auto-hide' function be
'dodge' and not 'always-hide', but the reasons are sound.

>  I haven't heard any discussion on this list about the issue, so I'm
> curious as to the reasoning. Would someone more familiar with the
> change please comment?
> There you go :)

Thank you :)

>  P.S. For those with a technical bent, CCSM can be used to restore the
> old 'dodge windows' behaviour for now.
> That codepath will disappear, we'd prefer to keep the code lean. In this
> case we've experimented, learned, and concluded a better approach is
> available, there's no argument for maintaining code we don't expose to
> users further.

I figured that, thus the 'for now' qualifier :)

On Wed, Feb 8, 2012 at 8:57 AM, tommy <tommy@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> Sure:
> http://luxperpetua.net/ubuntu/screenshot.jpg
> Notice that window controls are slightly to the left of upper left corner
> of maximized Firefox window. This applies to all windows.
> W dniu 2012-02-08 14:46, Mark Shuttleworth pisze:
>> On 08/02/12 13:45, tommy wrote:
>>> I really like the current idea of removing the "Dodge" feature. But
>>> window controls for maximized window are slightly to the left of the
>>> window's top left corner, so this might be confusing. Aligning the
>>> buttons plus click twice launcher icon to minimize app instead of
>>> doing nothing will make Unity perfect for me and some people that have
>>> tried it.
>> Can you mark out what you mean on a screenshot?
> --
> tommy

For the sake of all our sanities, can this whole discussion be branched to
a new thread please? Thanks :)

On Wed, Feb 8, 2012 at 10:16 AM, Michael Hall <mhall119@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> On 02/08/2012 09:49 AM, tommy wrote:
>> If minimize by launcher were possible, I could simply Super+1, Super+3,
>> Super+7 and I'm all done having few windows I want, insted of 20 clicks
>> and moving mouse along the whole desktop.
> I haven't had a use for minimizing windows in well over a year.  Between
> Unity's easy window switching and multiple workspaces, I leave open windows
> I am using, and close those I'm not.
> What exactly is your use case for needing to minimize a window, let alone
> multiple?  Maybe I'm missing something, but to me it's a legacy feature
> that is only kept around because it's always been that way.
> Michael Hall

This discussion probably deserves its own thread too.

On Wed, Feb 8, 2012 at 9:40 AM, Mark Shuttleworth <mark@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> What we have learned in the past is that users who experience the dodge
> separate from an actual immediate consequence to their own action, are
> confused by it.

That's perfectly understandable.

> That makes the dodge a bad, broken idea. Period. No matter how much you
> may love it, or I may love it, it's not a good idea to expose to users.

I disagree. The user testing does not strictly imply this. It might also be
possible to change the way we expose dodge to users such that they can
grasp the concept. It's not a difficult concept - I've never seen anyone
have problems with it *after* it was demonstrated/explained to them.

Here's a case that might work:
1) Have the launcher always show by default.
2) When the user presses the switch and changes to 'dodge':
    a) if a window is currently maximized, have the launcher animate-hide
and the maximized window expand (as it is now)
    b) if no window is maximized, have the launcher animate-hide and then
immediately animate-reveal (NEW)

In b), the user gets immediate visual feedback (that they associate with
their pressing the switch) about the new behaviour of the launcher. Since
'dodge' can only get set manually when users are paying attention to the
launcher in the first place, the movement should make it obvious that the
launcher may now by hidden off the edge of the screen.


Thanks again to everyone for all the responses. I have some reading to do