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[cross-project-issues-dev] Text and / or Icons on Buttons / Toolbar Items

Dear Eclipse experts,


today I had a discussion with co-workers and I also want your feedback on that topic.

It’s about Text and/or Icons on (Standard) Buttons:


Today we see a lot of dialogs in Eclipse where we have buttons that only have text but no icons.

On example is Platforms “Available Update Sites” preference page.


There we have Add, Remove, Edit, … on the right hand side of the table.

Btw: Should the “Edit” button not be “Edit…”?


Also JDT’s “Change Method Signature” refactoring dialog has a similar pattern:


In contrast to that let’s have a look at the “Rebase Interactive” view from EGIT:


Here we also have buttons. But they all have icons and in addition they have text below the icons. I find the UI design of the interactive rebase view really good. The “first time users” (that maybe

don’t know the meaning of some icons) can directly read the text (and don’t need to hover with the mouse) and will (maybe) learn the icons.
In addition there’s a context menu and we have key binding for the various actions.


Let’s have a look at an additional location of icons and text. The perspective switcher:

Here we also have Icons and text (but not on the right hand side) by default but the “power user” can switch the text off.


What’s the reason for not having icons on the other locations? The Add, Remove, Up, Down and Edit buttons could also get icons (that already either already exist in Eclipse or are known by “everybody” from every day’s life).








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