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Old 02-26-2008, 06:12 AM   #1
Registered: Feb 2006
Location: Leicester
Distribution: Ubuntu 10.10 with ROX DE
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Context Sensitive Menus

Lately I've been reading up a lot on the RISC OS invented by Acorn for their Archimedes, A and RISCPC series computers. One of the features that appeals to me is the context sensitive menu. Basically, for those who don't know (and there can't be many of you) this is like the menu you get when you right click in a window, but far more detailed in that it includes everything you'd expect to find in the menu bar. Just as with menu bar menus each headline entry in the csmenu opens up a submenu (and even sub submenus where necessary).

So... What are the chances of this feature being brought into Linux /FOSS apps? I can think of two reasons it could be a useful feature: less mouse travel (the menu pops up right next to the cursor) and more window real estate for the important stuff. It'd make fullscreen mode in browsers a lot more practical for people who just can't remember keyboard shortcuts too.

Of course, people have become used to the Microsoft way of doing things (which is why all the major desktop environments and applications available for Linux mimic it), so I'm not advocating the eradication of the menu bar; just the implementation of an alternative that's available if people want to use it.

I won't even go into Apple/OSX style top screen menu bars because I'm pretty sure Cupertino has those patented tighter than a duck's...

Last edited by Mark7; 02-26-2008 at 06:18 AM.
Old 02-26-2008, 06:43 AM   #2
Simon Bridge
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Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Waiheke NZ
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Have you ever used one of those? It was sometimes possible to make them go circular! It ended up more annoying than useful because everything was in a different place each time you summoned it (depending on "context"!)

Last time I looked, Enlightenment would give you a full menu on a rt-click. If I rt-click a browser pain in firefox, I get most of the navigation toolbar. There is no added functionality to the infinite depth riscos managed. That's why it isn't used.

You can use a dock that pops to the top, an auto-hidden panel, or just ctrl+alt+arrow and get a new desktop. Now all your options are available and in predictable places too.

But you're welcome to write one
But look:
Old 02-26-2008, 06:04 PM   #3
Registered: Oct 2001
Location: Brockport, NY
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You might also be interested in the ROX desktop environment. ROX stands for "RISC OS On X" and it has many of the design features included in RISC OS, including lack of menu bars, heavy use of drag-and-drop, and self-contained application directories.
Old 02-26-2008, 06:13 PM   #4
Registered: Feb 2006
Location: Leicester
Distribution: Ubuntu 10.10 with ROX DE
Posts: 192

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I'm already using ROX as my regular desktop environment

And the lack of menu bars only applies to applications specifically written for it. Everything else just works the same as if it was in Windows. Including a lack of drag and drop saving.


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