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Re: Thoughts on the installer (early)



> > Perhaps moving the fb-based frontend bogl you speak of to gtk-fb 
> > is the answer we're looking for?  That'll give us access to all the
> > features of gtk, which IMHO would be a boon for the UI.
> 
> First I want to reiterate someone else's comment -- having a GUI (in
> the sense you seem to be thinking) doesn't necessarily increase
> usability.  Usability comes from a design that allows the user to do
> what s/he wants intuitively, not from a pretty look-and-feel.

I agree with that.  But there isn't any reason that this couldn't be
accomplished with a gtk-based interface.  And there are some merits to
using a widget set that more resembles modern computing interfaces, as
opposed to a very minimal interface that can be implemented from
scratch.  People who are new to unix/linux/debian would by far
appreciate it more, if you ask me.  They see something that they are
used to working with and feel more comfortable, as opposed to leaving
the user wondering what new interface they will see next.
> 
> I'm not sure I understand why using gtk-fb, etc helps over using
> something like bogl. Two of the design constraints/goals for the
> installer are size and simplicity. What kind of overhead will gtk-fb
> add? We already have slang-based and bogl(fb)-based UIs in the works.

From what I gather today after playing around with gtk-fb today is
that you would have to have the appropriate versions of several libraries
available- the gtk & gdk libs, compiled for frame buffer support, 
glib, the pango libs, and the freetype libs.

That's a little overhead, yes, but I do think that since gtk-fb's
motivation is for embedded devices that it would be adequate for our
purposes.  From first glance at looking at the new debian installer,
it looks like size is becoming less of an issue, since the appropriate
modules (udebs) can be retreived while the installer is running.  At
first glance, it seems feasible to me.

The way I see it, the benefit of using this approach over something
like bogl (sorry, I've haven't seen this yet), is that it provides a
complete set of widgets that we can work with to produce a very
intuitive, very clickable, very friendly interface that looks really
good.  I don't think it would be wise to scrap the bogl efforts and
move towards something else, but what I'm asking is if it is feasible
to move the UI that bogl implements over to use gtk-ui, as opposed to
the lightweight, from scratch interface that is there already?
--
Chris Ruffin <cmruffin@debian.org>

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