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Re: Bug#341054: cdebconf-gtk: Add support for info message

Frans Pop wrote:
On Sunday 04 December 2005 23:04, Attilio Fiandrotti wrote:

Now, the NEWT frontend shows debconf/help-line (default: "<Tab>
moves between items; <Space> selects; <Enter> activates buttons") in
the bottom part of the screen, but it doesn't tell the user that
pressing ESC he can get back.
Is there any reason for this?

The help line was added mostly because users did not know how to use <space> to select items and <tab> to move around. In the newt frontend this is not completely obvious.

I agree that <SPACE> and <TAB> are quite common interface navigation key in most UIs, but what about <ESC> ? It doesn't seem to me so obvious that pressing esc you can get back one step: i think many users (especially if coming from Windows world) could think that the <BACKDEL>
key is associated to such a functionality rather than <ESC>.

And should the GTK frontend display such text line in the bottom part of the screen ?

No, I don't think so. The GTK frontend (using the mouse) should be intuitive enough. The keyboard shortcuts IMO are a "bonus" for the adventurous or experienced.

Well, one thing i apreciate a lot in the newt frontend is the ability to rapidly complete an installation using the keys and also i've noticed myself using the keyboard instead of the mouse whenver i could during the (many :) test instalations i did in the past months (this is the reason why i've added the <ESC> key functionality to the GTK frontend). Also, i have to admit that first-time debian users would instinctively prefer the mouse for installation since they would not be confident enough with the d-i to use the keyboard (using the mouse could seem "safer" for unexperienced users) I also think that, starting from his second installation, an user would like to be able to use keyboard to install debian faster than before since he's already confident with the debian installation procedures.

I'm asking this because we could use a GtkStatusBar, placed in the
footer part of the screen, (would look like this
http://developer.gnome.org/doc/API/2.0/gtk/GtkStatusbar.html) to
display both debconf/help-line and rescue/info (maybe red and bold this
last one if markup is allowed in gtkstatus bars).

The status bar could be used for the info text, although personally I think lowmem/rescue should probably be more prominent than in the bottom of the screen. I feel in the newt frontend it currently is not really prominent enough: it is very easy to miss.

I've done some experiments to test where the debconf/help-line and/or the rescue/info would fit better. I think using a statusbar would be a bad idea since it steals too much useful space to the rest of the interface [1] and things could get even worse if 640x480 is used. So i tought that the blank space on the left of the "back" button could be better used to display help text [2] (forget the arrow, that's only a soon forgot extravaganza ). If we decide not to display the debconf/help-line text in the GTK frontend , then the rescue/info text could displayed at his place. Instead, if we decide that debconf/help-line has to be displayed as it is in [2], then i would suggest to place rescue/info in the top/right part of the screen, under the top banner [3]. This because on the right of the question's title there is usually of empty space.

what do you think is the best arrangement?



[1] https://debian.polito.it/downloads/message_statusbar.png
[2] https://debian.polito.it/downloads/message_label.png
[3] https://debian.polito.it/downloads/message_label_rescue.png

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