Fwd: Re: Features V stability

Subject: Fwd: Re: Features V stability
From: John H. Raines, Jr. (raines@one.net)
Date: Fri May 04 2001 - 07:42:57 CDT

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On 5/4/01 at 1:39 AM Sam TH <sam@uchicago.edu> wrote:

What do you think would be a good user interface to adding lines between list items?

Currently, AW works like this:

If you hit return twice, it eliminates the new list element. In other words, RET-RET behaves exactly like RET-BKSP.

There are a few possibilites here:

1. The second return could generate another new list element, leaving the previous new one blank. [ This is how the first AW implementation worked ]
2. The new return could behave like backspace, the way it currently does in AW and Word.
3. The new return could insert a blank line *before* the current list element, the way you describe WordPerfect working.
4. The new return could add another line to the document, at the end, but without a list header on it.

The only way currently to insert the blank lines you are talking about is to go back to the beginning of the line the new list element is on, and hit return. I think this qualifies as definitely non-intuitive.

Does anyone have suggestions for improving this interface?

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I found the current list procedure to be very nice (and intuitive) on Abiword. (Intuitive meaning on my first try at ending a list, I was sucessful without looking at the help). One likes to keep procedures that seem intuitive.

I assume that what we are discussing here is not a "standard" change to lists which will be handled in the planned list dialoge. Instead what is desired ist an adhoc change in the body of the list where spacing for one item will very. I would suggest that return in combination with one of the special keys (shift or contral or alt) would be a way to easily add additional lines between list items or in the body of a list.

Again, I would add this as an enhancement in the bug list and move on to Ver 1.

It seems that the possible "required" enhancements at this point is a basic table function & something for letterheads. (multiple headers with an ability to vary by page would handle the letterhead thing in a straight forward way. Images in headers could come later.)

My feeling is, that in many ways, Abiword is more stable than many commercial products, loads faster and presents a more friendly interface for the average user. The sooner current feature set is completed the better.

J. Raines

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