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Re: (Possible) menu code rewrite

On Tue, 2002-07-16 at 22:21, Chris Lawrence wrote:
> - Complete backward compatibility with existing menu entries.
> - Built-in support for conversion to .desktop files for KDE and Gnome.
Is this just so that hundreds of developers don't complain about having
to change all their menu entries. Surely making a good menu system which
follows a standard form (.desktop) is a better goal. 
Perhaps have both systems running for the first few months, with the new
menu as standard, with an extra category at the end  - Old-Menu-Items -
for the packages which haven't been upgraded yet. This would ensure that
the menus aren't 'broken' on any systems, yet would encourage developers
to migrate to the new menu system.

For the other goals:
* i18n definitely should be done. 
* menu policy changes. Many people have suggested that this needs doing.
If developers are going to have to change their menu files for the new
menu system, then this is the ideal time to also change the policy.
Hopefully menu-policy people are listening.
* the suggestion of X-Expertise-Level=(novice|...|expert) is
interesting. I think some of the more useful ideas though might be:
* X-Permissions-required = user(root) | group(aaa)
* [In the following, I am assuming that the debian menu will be used
entirely for the gnome/kde menu, rather than it being in an extra entry
at the end.]
Desktop = GNOME 
  - for this, you could then specify that certain programs go in
different places in the menu depending on what is running. For example,
in a GNOME menu, you would want nautilus, galeon, gnome-terminal to be
in prominent positions, and items such as konqueror to be in less
important places. Possibly having something like
when gnome is running, and for KDE menus:
This would obviously require a more complicated menu file / .desktop
file (or whatever is decided). 

* Novice settings
This is probably an idea for the future, rather than to be implemented
straight away. 
When installing the menu, (or more likely, when installing Debian),
there should be an option for 'Novice user'.
Then, the menu system should be made very simple, removing a lot of the
choices. For example, a typical entry might be
Internet/Web Browser
hint: This will let you look at www pages.
Perhaps this could be linked to etc/alternatives. 
Very few developers will be interested in this, however it could be very
useful for people who are using computers for the first time
(DebianJr?). If they want a web browser, they will look for web browser
- galeon, mozilla, lynx, konqueror aren't really obvious names for web
I believe many of the "Why linux sucks"/"top 500 things wrong with
linux/computers today" suggests this sort of menu, however I can't find
a link at the moment.

Good luck with the new menu system. Remember that your priority is to
make Debian have the best menu system; not particularly to make Debian
developers have very little work to do in the transition.

| Mark Howard               cam.ac.uk   mh344@ |
| http://www.tildemh.com    tildemh.com    mh@ |

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