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Re: [platform-ui-dev] Proposal - Context and pulldown menus affecting resources in Navigator view


Thanks for your suggestions. 

The current Project pulldown menu is currently a bit of a misnomer, in 
that its items do not apply to the selected project, but rather to the 
whole workspace (e.g. Project / Build builds all projects).
For that reason, we are renaming it to "Workspace".
Pulldown menu items for project-specific actions would therefore have to 
go elsewhere.
Some may be in common with actions on files, e.g. "Properties", "Rename" 
and so could go on the File menu.

Currently our File menu is not normally dynamic (other than the list of 
recently used files).
In general it is undesirable to change which items appear in a menu 
dynamically based on the selection or other criteria, since there is no 
visual feedback that new items are there, or have gone away.
This certainly happens a lot currently in the Edit menu, particularly for 
our Java editor.  One option here would be to move all the Java items to a 
separate "Java" menu.
I would recommend a similar approach for any web tooling specific actions.

We also have a policy of not allowing views to contribute to the pulldown 
menus or main toolbar themselves.  Only editors and registered action sets 
can do so.
In the past we allowed this, but users found it very confusing for the 
pulldown menus to be changing dynamically depending on which view was 
On the other hand, people still expect generic actions like Cut, Copy, 
Paste, Delete, etc. to apply to the current selection, even if it is in a 
So in our current solution, we have a small set of such global actions, 
which views can hook.
We could consider adding more items, such as File / Properties and File / 

Regarding your specific points below,

1: We are looking at the organization of context menus, and are trying to 
follow platform UI guideline recommendations (e.g. in the "Windows User 
Experience" book).

2: Open Perspective does apply to the current selection, and is not the 
same as Perspective / Open.  This item may change with the current work on 
perspectives, though.

3: Not all the Go To actions appear on the toolbar, e.g. Go To / Resource. 
 Also, there are accessibility reasons for not making items only available 
on toolbars.
In general toolbar buttons should only be conveniences for menu items, and 
are only useful for those who can use a mouse.

4:  See comments above.  Also, some of the actions you mention are 
specific to web tooling, so their placement is not defined by the Eclipse 
UI team.


"Lucinio Santos" <santosg@xxxxxxxxxx>
Sent by: platform-ui-dev-admin@xxxxxxxxxxx
11/30/01 10:37 AM
Please respond to platform-ui-dev

        To:     platform-ui-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx
        Subject:        [platform-ui-dev] Proposal - Context and pulldown menus affecting 
resources in Navigator view

The current organization and distribution of menu items among context and
pulldown menus involving resources in Navigator View is somewhat
unbalanced.  Consequently the context menus are  too long and seemingly
disorganized, while certain pulldown menus (Project) are underutilized,
thus keeping inconspicuous important items (e.g., Project properties)

     The following proposal addresses this issue:

   1- Reorganize the context menus: Better Grouping (according to 
   and usage)  and separators (see summary at the end).

   2- Remove "Open Perspective" from the context menu.  It doesn't belong
   here since this action is not "tied" to the selected resource/object
   (e.g., the opened perspective doesn't select the current resource
   automatically).  This is already in the "Perspective" pulldown.
   Although it could be argued that having it in the context menu provides
   a "shortcut", given the large number of items, we have to be selective
   and only place items in the context menu that pertain to the selected
   object/resource... to keep the context menu to a manageable size.

   3) Remove "Go To".  As above.   This is just a navigational shortcut we
   can do without (arguably) .   These GoTo operations are provided 
   in the Navigator toolbar (it's already close to a selected object, so
   there is not a lot of "mouse travel" gain anyway.

   3- Open Project and Close Project are complementary and mutually
   exclusive.  One one is enabled the other one is disabled.  There is no
   need to have entries for both.  There should be a single "Open Project"
   or "Close Project" depending on the current state of the project.

   4 -The Project pulldown is underutilized.  Currently contains a single
   item: Rebuild All. Some of the options exclusively presented in Context
   menus are quite important (Validate, Edit Deployment Descriptor, and
   Properties) and we should surface in the menu bar to make them more
   visible. Thus...
     The Project pulldown should include all the items currently present 
     context menu for a selected project.  If the resource selected is a
     File or (non-project) folder instead of a project, the Project
     pulldown would be populated with the items present in the context 
     of the project to which the selected File or folder belongs to.

        ... Except the following (context menu items) which would be 
        under  other pulldowns (instead of in the Projects pulldown)
          - Clipboard items (Cut, Copy, Paste, Delete) would be placed in
          the Edit The following items currently present in context menu
          would be removed.  This items are already in the Edit pulldown
          - Team (Edit pulldown)
          - Replace with (Edit Pulldown)
          - Compare with (Edit Pulldown)
          - Go into (File pulldown)

        Context menu           Pulldown Menu

        New...            File (already there)
        OpenProject/Close Project   Project    (this only shows for
        projects. One entry for both)
        Open              File (this only shows for projects.  Already
        Refresh from Local          Project (if context menu of a Project)
        or File (if context menu of a File)
        Go into                File
        Copy              Edit (already there)
        Move              Edit (already there)
        Rename            Edit (already there)
        Delete            Edit (already there)
        Run on Server          Project
        Restart                Project ((this only shows for projects)
        Run Validation         Project (this only shows for projects)
        Validate HTML syntax   Tools  (this only shows for files.  This is
        already in the Tools pulldown)
        Team              Edit
        Compare with           Edit
        Replace with           Edit
        Properties             Project (if context menu of a Project) or
        File (if context menu of a File)

The principles here are:
          - Place all objects pertaining to a selected object in its
          context menu... meaningfully organized
          - Placed generic items having to do with projects in the 
          pulldown (in addition to the context menu)
          - Place generic items having to do with files i the File 
          (in addition to the context menu)
          - Place "edit" type items in the Edit pulldown whether the 
          is a file or a project...

                  Lucinio Santos
                  Web Tools Human-Computer Interaction
                  Phone: (919) 543-4813  (tie: 3-4813) -  Fax: (919)
                  Internet: santosg@xxxxxxxxxx

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