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Re: How uniform can GUI clients be?

From: Mark Murphy <mmurphy_at_collab.net>
Date: 2001-01-31 14:20:09 CET

> >While we may depict a folder/directory
> >differently, the context menu operations to be
> >performed on one should be fairly consistent
> >(i.e., add, remove, update all, commit all, ...
> I'd say leave out commands like "update ALL"
> and "commit ALL". The idea generally should
> be: select an object and then specify the
> operation you want to do with it. An object
> here can be a folder or a file or so.

The only reason for having "foo" and "foo ALL" as separate operations is
if they have actual different meanings. For example, if performing an
operation on a folder means something different than performing an
operation on a folder and its contents.

> Well, what would be a GUI operation for "merge from
> branch rel-1-0-1-fixes"? This could be mapped to
> drag and drop in a branch and revision history
> tree view. Good. And a diff between rel-1-0-1-fixes
> and rel-1-1-a16 of a few files? I'd say, that selecting
> the files and then picking the diff command from the
> SVN menu is not too strange a thing. After that you
> can view the diff of each file by double clicking
> the files' entries in the sand box view.

I'm not familiar with version tree views, so I don't know how we'd do it
there. In a file/folder view, when you select a file, I can see a diff
menu option off the file object's context menu.

> I might be missing a lot here. But one thing is: people
> will only feel "comfortable" with SVN (or any other
> complex system) if they can figure out what's going
> on. They have to understand what it does and they
> have to understand notions of tag, branch, revision
> history, etc. And they have to understand what operations
> they can perform and what those operations will do
> for them. In a system like SVN, we mustn't expect
> the GUI to teach the user? Isn't there going on too
> much that is not immediately *visible*. In this respect,
> SVN is very different from, say Photoshop, where
> you immediately see on screen what you do or did.
> So, what's so bad about having these operations as
> commands in menus?

I think most "commands" need to be operations against objects, vs.
standalone commands. In other words, as much on context menus as
possible vs. window menus.

Mark Murphy
Received on Sat Oct 21 14:36:20 2006

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