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Re: Difficulty switching between windows


On 25. feb. 2012 19:59, Aviv wrote:
Dear Unity design members,

I find it a bit difficult to switch between windows on Unity.

Great! I mean, if you've found something to be difficult, it's great that you explain it here. :)

To switch between windows of an open application, Unity should have a
keyboard shortcut analogous to Super+(1 to 0). Users should also be
able to use (some key)+(Right or Left) for the same purpose. Likewise,
(some key)+(Up or Down) could be useful for switching between open
applications. (An extra key is necessary because the cursor keys are
likely to have functionality in the application.)

We have three different ways of switching between applications (not windows):

1) Alt+tab, which will switch based on when they were used. You can then use arrow keys left and right to navigate between them, and arrow-key down to get a preview of the open windows of that application, enabling you to select a window of that application using arrow keys. Arrow-up collapses the window view.

2) Super+tab which switches based on the position in the launcher. Super+shift+tab moves backwards.

3) Alt+F1. Very similar to super+tab, except it will switch to or launch the currently selected application on release. In contrast, alt+f1 requires you to press enter. You'll then use arrow-keys up and down to select applications in the launcher, right arrow to open the quicklist for the selected application, and left arrow to collapse an open quicklist.

For switching between windows, we have three methods:

1) Alt+(button above tab). This works the same way as alt+tab, except between windows of a single application. You can use arrow keys to navigate between windows with previews. There will be no conflict with the focused window because it looses focus while the dialog is open.

2) Super+num on a focused window. For example, if Firefox is number 2 on your launcher and is focused, then pressing super+2 will display all Firefox windows with previews so you can easily select one.

3) Super+W will display all open windows on the current workspace.

In all three cases, we could combine with numbers, so that while the window selector is open, pressing a number would focus the appropriate window. I think that would be an enhancement. (I've proposed this numerous times, but nobody will listen! :))

The ordering of the windows should NOT change (see
https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/unity/+bug/730617). Unity
should somehow allow users to easily change the ordering manually.

It might be possible to do both, as with switching between applications. I think it would be nice if we could drag windows around in the scale view and reorder them that way. I think that might be very nice in combination with numbers.

There should be an alternative to Super+(1 to 0), like Ctrl+(1 to 0).
Whenever Super+(1 to 0) is utilized for switching between
applications, the launcher appears, which is annoying. An alternative
like Ctrl+(1 to 0) would NOT invoke the launcher, but allow the
possibility of doing so [with Super+(1 to 0), to review the mapping,
of applications to numbers, for example].

Whether the launcher appears or not, depends on how fast you are. I agree it's annoying that the launcher appears when using super+num switching, but using another combination in order to prevent it would probably be even more annoying. I guess the problem here is balancing. The time it takes before the launcher appears should be more personal than it is now. The most awesome solution, I think, would be if it automatically adjusted to the average time you use when using super+num. But even if it was easily configurable, it would be an improvement.

I also think it would be better if Alt+Tab would ONLY switch between
applications, leaving Alt+Grave to do the switching between windows.

Alt+tab _does_ only switch between applications. We use alt+(button above tab) to switch between windows. Same solution, different keys. :)

Jo-Erlend Schinstad

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