Release recommendation: Usability improvements

Forum Forums Official Releases antiX-19 “Marielle Franco, Hannie Schaft, Manolis Glezos” Release recommendation: Usability improvements

  • This topic has 50 replies, 13 voices, and was last updated Jan 2-9:05 pm by skidoo.
Viewing 15 posts - 31 through 45 (of 51 total)
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  • #46321
    Forum Admin
    DaveDave

    an easier way to add program “icons” to the “desktop”

    not a better way, just an easier way?
    Howabout, add a column to the “App Select” gui utility so that a “click” copies the associated .desktop file to ~/Desktop/##.desktop

    After updating try right clicking an entry in app-select.
    The options are inbuilt and very basic/rough to get an idea (works with space not rox, etc).
    Ideally this would be expanded upon… hopefully “handing” app information to other programs for further use (Menu Manager?) so app-select does not get completely bloated.
    Any more thoughts? Is it easier?

    Computers are like air conditioners. They work fine until you start opening Windows. ~Author Unknown

    #46322
    Moderator
    AvatarBobC

    Normal people are learning (necessity is the mother of invention) to use “App Stores” and install “Applications”. That methodolgy and terminolgy is becoming standard because it means that no longer do they need to be a “guru” to find and install a new game or browser, etc.

    The question in my mind is can we take what we have (in this case we call it “Package Installer”), leave the guts alone, tweak the looks/feel and rename it “Free Apps Store” or something they will recognize and not be afraid of, so that normal people can identify it and work it intuitively, without breaking the “lean and mean” promise that says the code should be able to run well on slower machines.

    #46323
    Moderator
    AvatarModdIt

    olstyn wrote:
    Astra Linux being widely adopted in Russia and China uses Fly-DE and my benchmarks indicate memory footprint of Astra is about the same as for antiX.
    Astra Linux is a debian derivative so a similar footprint is to be expected, depending on desktop and background services running.
    Widely used in China, a russian system, that is some big misunderstanding. Linux usage is low in china, predominant is still XP. Linux share reputed
    to be about 2,5%. Much of that Ubuntu based, yet another debian derivative. Most used desktop probably deepin.
    The Chinese Government will be replacing the present mostly windows systems with a home breew non linux operating system which they intend to make
    harder to attack than current offers. Presumably US hardware will also dissapear for same reason.

    Regarding a mainline desktop and system D. MX provides both, it is in some respects very near to antiX, has many of the tools.
    KDE, is available if funky is wanted. D can be used if wished for to allow some software to function.

    Added because the Russian OS is also a debian derivative. Fly-de may or may not be an adaptation of something well known.

    #46325
    Moderator
    AvatarModdIt

    Hi PPC, you are right that some names are somewhat cryptic, in germany and england both are well known.

    On my task bar the full name pops up when I hover the mouse over an icon which was one of the considerations
    for setup on an image for use by non experts and windoze fugitives. Apart from those who just take a look at
    the weird system somebody has on a keyring.

    GNU Image Manipulation Program, GIMP is shorthand, Gimp is well known on both winwows and OSX, er shorthand for MAC OS.

    “Wine Is Not (an) Emulator” again shorthand: is a compatibility layer capable of running Windows applications on several POSIX-compliant
    operating systems, such as Linux, macOS, & BSD. Instead of simulating internal Windows logic like a virtual machine or
    emulator, Wine translates Windows API calls into POSIX calls on-the-fly, eliminating the performance and memory penalties
    of other methods and allowing you to cleanly integrate Windows applications into your desktop.

    Sure we can not please all, just cushion the transitional shock.

    What is a gimp: please be aware:
    in english it is well known and understood as one or all of following.
    (1) a derrogatory term for someone that is disabled or has a medicial problem that results in physical impairment.
    (2) An insult implying that someone is incompetent, stupid, etc. Can also be used to imply that the person is uncool or can’t/won’t do what everyone else is doing.
    (3) A sex slave or submissive, usually male, as popularlized by the movie Pulp Fiction.

    #46330
    Forum Admin
    anticapitalistaanticapitalista

    an easier way to add program “icons” to the “desktop”

    not a better way, just an easier way?
    Howabout, add a column to the “App Select” gui utility so that a “click” copies the associated .desktop file to ~/Desktop/##.desktop

    After updating try right clicking an entry in app-select.
    The options are inbuilt and very basic/rough to get an idea (works with space not rox, etc).
    Ideally this would be expanded upon… hopefully “handing” app information to other programs for further use (Menu Manager?) so app-select does not get completely bloated.
    Any more thoughts? Is it easier?

    Add to Desktop only works with SpaceFM not Rox.
    Add to Personal menu fails in all ‘desktops’ – the desktop file is correctly sent to ~/.local/share/applications/TCM but it doesn’t show in the menu.

    Also, after running the above, there is a duplicate of the app eg add-key in App-Select

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

    antiX with runit - leaner and meaner.

    #46338
    Moderator
    AvatarModdIt

    @anticapitalista
    Add to Personal menu fails in all ‘desktops’ – the desktop file is correctly sent to ~/.local/share/applications/TCM but it doesn’t show in the menu.

    Mostly hidden or not set is reason for that, can be changed with the control center application show hide.
    Not good though.

    #46363
    Member
    AvatarPPC

    Hi PPC, you are right that some names are somewhat cryptic, in germany and england both are well known.

    On my task bar the full name pops up when I hover the mouse over an icon which was one of the considerations
    for setup on an image for use by non experts and windoze fugitives. Apart from those who just take a look at
    the weird system somebody has on a keyring.

    GNU Image Manipulation Program, GIMP is shorthand, Gimp is well known on both winwows and OSX, er shorthand for MAC OS.

    “Wine Is Not (an) Emulator” again shorthand: is a compatibility layer capable of running Windows applications on several POSIX-compliant
    operating systems, such as Linux, macOS, & BSD. Instead of simulating internal Windows logic like a virtual machine or
    emulator, Wine translates Windows API calls into POSIX calls on-the-fly, eliminating the performance and memory penalties
    of other methods and allowing you to cleanly integrate Windows applications into your desktop.

    Sure we can not please all, just cushion the transitional shock.

    What is a gimp: please be aware:
    in english it is well known and understood as one or all of following.
    (1) a derrogatory term for someone that is disabled or has a medicial problem that results in physical impairment.
    (2) An insult implying that someone is incompetent, stupid, etc. Can also be used to imply that the person is uncool or can’t/won’t do what everyone else is doing.
    (3) A sex slave or submissive, usually male, as popularlized by the movie Pulp Fiction.

    @moddit – I was expression the point of view of a newbie to the open source world, and antiX in particular – I’m a GIMP user myself and, on occasion, I run WINE – both are wonderful pieces of software- just very poorly named (but then again, so are some world famous apps – MS Word – does relate to text or writing, but MS Excel? Not so much – following the same logic as MS Word if should have been called something like “MS Numbers” or similar]
    My question about GIMP had a typo, I meant “WTF is GIMP”. Now that you mentioned the first definition I do recall someone forking GIMP and renaming it to be more politically correct- and I remembered that definition. I had not idea about the second definition and the third one simply cracked me up 🙂
    I did not mean any offence to any disabled person, it was just a typo 🙁

    @Bobc- you said something about app stores – Appinstaller is a fine example of a simple and efficient one – it’s tiny compared to all the thousands of available apps for Debian/antiX. Xecure already produced a kind of “app store”, well, more like an “app installer” – Off line repo can already be used to search and install apps… with some tweaks, a version that skips the “off line” part could be made to act as a simplified interface for “apt”, simpler to use than “synaptic”. I do love synaptic, and use it a lot, but I remember well my “Why does it list to many stuff that I don’t want?” moments when I first began using it (even before antiX, maybe in my old Linux Mint days, many moons ago).
    As close as it gets to a general app store that works for antiX is the pling store – https://www.pling.com/p/1175480/ but it still requires users to manually make appimage images executable and manually start them… so it’s a no go for most newbies.

    P.

    #46364
    Moderator
    AvatarModdIt

    Hi PPC, I was sure you meant no offense, just believe it is better
    to inform on such things. Many english words have at least two meanings.

    Maybe gimp was chosen by persons who had no knowledge of the meanings of the word, maybe they
    thought it would never get out of context. WTF could upset people too, sometimes not so easy..

    My main message was task bar entrys with mouse over text popup are great for users.

    On all the stuff synaptic lists, the most useful to me is where things are installed. Temporary
    repo change is also nice. If user remembers to revert the change, otherwise “somewhat interesting”
    trying to fix the mess after next upgrade..

    Difficulty I found with off line repo, dependency fixing. Can get very complicated.

    #46371
    Member
    skidooskidoo

    usability improvement:

    a .bashrc function (or izzit a a bash4.0 option?) to dectect CAPSLOCK, auto-inverting the commandstring

    ___________________________________________
    When requesting help, pasting the output from inxi -Fzr command will provide important relevant details:
    antiX version//edition ~~ stable vs testing repos ~~ live vs installed vs virtualbox ~~ hardware specs

    #46390
    Forum Admin
    DaveDave

    Add to Desktop only works with SpaceFM not Rox.
    Add to Personal menu fails in all ‘desktops’ – the desktop file is correctly sent to ~/.local/share/applications/TCM but it doesn’t show in the menu.

    Also, after running the above, there is a duplicate of the app eg add-key in App-Select

    Yes these I know.
    1) it is only copying to ~/Desktop as per skidoo’s comment. I do have code to try and place an icon on the rox pinboard which is a bit troublesome as rox does not have a direct interface for allowing this.
    2) Yes this fails for a couple of reasons, one is the presence of the hidden flag in the .desktop file, two because it does not issue an update menu command. I only coded it to copy the file to the TCM directory and flag it as X-Personal.
    3) It shows up because it is a duplicate (it would show under personal and applications in the menu system). This could be considered a bug or a feature… Should app-select ignore the personal menu items?

    I believe these functions are outside of the intended duty of app-select. I added the menu to “display” the suggested ideas / improvements from this thread with a quick bit of code. (but I thought a menu that does absolutely nothing vs some very basic function is of no productive use). If this menu layout helps solve some of the items people are thinking of then I would spend more time and rewrite it to be a “plugin” style menu. Which would use a config file structured similar to :

    Function Label | command-to-run
     Add to personal menu | menu-manager.sh --add --personal %f
     Remove from personal menu | menu-manager.sh --remove --personal %f
     Edit Entry | leafpad %f
     Add to Desktop | add-desktop %f
     Remove from Desktop | remove-desktop %f
    
    • This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Dave.

    Computers are like air conditioners. They work fine until you start opening Windows. ~Author Unknown

    #48216
    Member
    Avatarmarcuscf

    As a new user, who has just installed antiX 19.3 these would be my usability suggestions:

    1. Just one set of resource monitors: Conky or IceWM status indicators. On a old system I have, IceWM came with the battery indicator working without any configuration, while I had to change BAT0 to BAT1 in Conky config to get the correct readings. Also, the IceWM indicators launch lxtask, what may be useful. On the other hand, Conky is much more readable and informative than those tiny graphs on IceWM taskbar
    2. Better contrast. All themes have either black or gray taskbars while we have a black volume control and a gray connection indicator, so one of them will always be hard to see.
    3. Uncluttered menus. The all apps menu is kind of hidden somewhere in the middle of the main menu. It would be easier to use if menus were less deep and gave access to more apps directly. I have commented out a few items I don’t need in my system but I don’t have any general guidance here yet. Maybe we could start by moving the Kill app and Help submenu somewhere else?
    4. Other improvements usability improvements that you are already planning anyway 🙂
    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by marcuscf. Reason: typos
    #48227
    Member
    Avatarseaken64

    Hi marcuscf, welcome to antiX.

    I have come to like the three monitors on the panel. I like being able to see them all the time and when the Conky is obscured. But I like the Conky and it is much more modifiable and personal. And theuser can easily remove the panel icons/monitors using the config files. Conky is harder to manage especially for newbies.

    I agree with the uncluttered menus. Sometimes there is just too much on the menus and I tend to use the same path all the time anyway. I like to setup the personal menu with my oft used programs. It’s almost as good as the “Recent” entries on the Whisker menu on MX or other DE menus.

    Seaken64

    #48261
    Member
    Avatarmarcuscf

    Oh, I’ll add one more:

    5. There’s an option in the menus to enable ROX Panel but when enabled it stays on top of (or sometimes below) maximized windows. I think it was not supposed to be like that (judging from ROX Panel’s own settings and IceWM documentation, it looks like there’s a solution to this problem but for whatever reason it isn’t working – maybe it used to work on older versions). If a feature (like this) is wonky I think it should be temproarily disabled so new users don’t get frustrated with an option that’s not usable.

    @seaken64 – Thanks for the input! I agree that both Conky and IceWM monitors are useful and I couldn’t say which one would be preferable but they are overwhelming and redundant for new users – especially when removing either of them involves editing a text file. Maybe the default Conky config could be slimmed down so it doesn’t duplicate as much info?

    #48263
    Forum Admin
    anticapitalistaanticapitalista

    Not everyone defaults to IceWM. They may want all the conky info in a fluxbox/JWM ‘desktop’ OOTB.

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

    antiX with runit - leaner and meaner.

    #48264
    Moderator
    Brian MasinickBrian Masinick

    I really appreciate these discussions.

    What’s particularly interesting about some of them is that even though some characteristics are unusual (and may even “confuse” the beginning user), they are components that typify what antiX is and what it stands for.

    I am one of the people who opened up the discussion about features and capability. Regardless of what is decided I completely support anticapitalista and this project because it carves out a niche not handled anywhere else. The distributions that have a few similar features are not Debian or Devuan based and their overall look and feel is quite different.

    Even the MX Linux that shares a few tools and development resources has a very different look and feel.

    I think that some people who are looking for a beginners distribution should see if MX Linux would work; it’s not quite as light as antiX is but I have used it on aging hardware and I actually use both distributions. When I just want to get in and do some simple work I find MX Linux often meets the task well.

    Other times I want to squeeze the most out of my system or experiment; antiX suits those requirements better. Nothing wrong with choosing different tools for different tasks and these two, though both excellent, fit better for somewhat different reasons, though both also make very good every day systems.

    Keep this in mind and don’t hesitate to try both and use both. One thing that they share is the same ability to be great systems on removable media!

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by Brian Masinick. Reason: Fit

    Brian Masinick

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