Reply to topic

Vision of System Settings to improve the usability

User avatar Brilliant Deve
Registered Member
Posts
33
Karma
0
OS
Vision of System Settings to improve the usability

KDE is powerful stable Desktop Environment has a unique Workspace. Also, in
KDE we have got awesome most solid applications ever found in linux. KDE
also provide Full Desktop Customization thou system settings no need for additional tools\tweaks .
However, System Settings does not ensure the usability in Design of most options.

Usability Failures :

# Design for extreme especially for new User most of them will find it difficult differentiate
between :
[*]“Common Appearance and Behavior” and “Workspace Appearance and Behavior”.
[*]“Account Details” and “Personal Information”. BTW, what the deference ?!
[*]“Application Appearance” and “Workspace Appearance”

# Some settings grouped in unrelated Section
i.e "Account Details” and “Personal Information in Common Appearance and Behavior \
Login Screen in System\ multimedia in Hardware...etc.

# Infinite number of Tabs and rarely used options rise the complexity which lets to usability Failure.

Tn summarize :

[*]Some sections & settings have confusing names.
[*]Some separation of settings is confusing: Stuff which belongs together is separated,and some stuff is together which should be separated.
[*]Its difficult to find most used options between crowded settings that most users probably never touch.


Redesign System settings vision:

with keeping these issues in mind ,we have to redesign some System settings
components to ensure the usability as well as to adapt it for Plasma Active .

Mock ups :

Default Applications :

Image
( Click on the Picture to see the Mock Up )
(left window is Current System Settings , Right is the Mock up)

Current Default Applications options bother you to choose form left KiconView
and provide you with all application menu to only choose web browser for example.

Account Details :

Image

User account missing really important Feature which managing Account !! We have to have KUser to do so .
Also we see brief example of rarely used options problem declared above.Here

Display :

Image

improve tabs experience & Take advantage of available area in design.

Device Actions :

Image

this options is really well designed, but has a small problem on it's description.
Users usually don't read long description & even handbook, So we only need to write small sentences .!

System Settings is not truly Maximizable :

when we maximize some options in system settings they sometimes stretch in inefficient way
\(could be funny things to see).

Examples :

Example 1 \\ Example 2 \\ Example 3


Vision is Mission that We all Cooperate in to Achieve :

KDE System Settings could be even better than my mock ups if we Redesign it with Usability & User-Friendly manner. For
better KDE experience & Usability enhancement.

Regards
Mohammad Al-Rashed
a Student in Software Engineering.

Last edited by Brilliant Deve on Mon Apr 09, 2012 5:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.
yoda
Registered Member
Posts
23
Karma
0
OS
Nice but to gnome'ish - in hide-everything-from-user sort of way, don't hide options! just make them nice looking and easy accessible
User avatar Brilliant Deve
Registered Member
Posts
33
Karma
0
OS
yoda wrote:Nice but to gnome'ish - in hide-everything-from-user sort of way, don't hide options! just make them nice looking and easy accessible


agreed, that why we never need to use extra tweaks\tools like gnome users. However we don't have to have rarely used options because it effect ease of use and usability assurance .

Last edited by Brilliant Deve on Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:16 am, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar Brilliant Deve
Registered Member
Posts
33
Karma
0
OS
^^

Last edited by Brilliant Deve on Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
markg85
Registered Member
Posts
9
Karma
0
OS
I'm beginning to think that kde needs a "simple" and "advanced" control panel.
It has benefits but on the other hand i like the advanced features right on my screen without doing anything for it other then opening the system settings.

Perhaps it's possible to do per component simple/advanced settings. For example, you open System Settings -> Account Details. By default it would be really nice to have it look like in the mockups from the first post. In addition to that add a "advanced" link that expands the view with the more advanced options.

We should certainly not remove options like gnome does!

Just my 5 cents.
User avatar Fri13
Registered Member
Posts
363
Karma
4
OS
markg85 wrote:I'm beginning to think that kde needs a "simple" and "advanced" control panel.


We had those at the begin of KDE SC line, but they were trashed because usability was terrible.
It is much better to have everything visible (tweaking possibility) and accessible (no hidden functions, config files or other tools) than separate them to "basic" and "advanced" groups.

What we need for current system settings are better icons for many of the functions to separate them to each other. Like now workspace and application settings has same icon.

And then we need to line up a default UI look and functionality and there is a brainstorm here from that as well, where all functions are made look same.

People should as well learn that there ain't "KDE desktop environment" but "KDE SC" what includes a workspace (all about plasma, panels, desktop, KWin window manager etc), KDE applications (Official what belongs to KDE SC like konqueror, dolphin) and third party (like digiKam, rekonq, bangarang) KDE applications what use KDE platform like official ones and KDE workspaces.

KDE SC isn't just for Linux OS, but it is for NT and XNU operating systems as well. So you can have KDE applications running on NT or XNU. So when you have Windows or OS X system, you can use KDE applications because you can install KDE Platform there. But you can not have KDE workspace automatically (on Windows, you can replace Explorer shell with Plasma to get it so, but you can not replace Windows Window Manager with KWin).

We need to have those separations what we currently have. Because when user install KDE SC to computer what has a Windows or OS X, they will only get the system settings panel what includes settings what they can access. And all same are on computer what has Linux (or FreeBSD etc) and whole KDE SC installed. No missing functions in tools, no empty spaces, only a configuration tools removed from system settings panel what Windows or OS X users can not use anyway. That separation simplifies and ties KDE SC for everything, from tablets to Windows or OS X computers to anything where it is available.

Oh and btw, System Settings is separate application from workspace and does not belong to workspace part what this forum is about.
User avatar bcooksley
Administrator
Posts
18657
Karma
83
OS
System Settings is part of the kde-workspace component, and is very much a part of the KDE Workspace.
I should note that making easy to use user interfaces is not easy - especially when many of the interfaces need to be dynamically generated.

Also there are some cases when modules have been ported several times, from KDE 2 to KDE 3, then from KDE 3 to KDE 4. This generally makes a module less usable in the process.

I will also note that it is possible to make elegant and usable interfaces which offer a full selection of options.


System Settings and Device Actions KCM maintainer
Image
User avatar poomerang
Registered Member
Posts
65
Karma
0
OS
it surely isn't a easy task, but there seems to be a lot of need for some precise and I'd say even strict guidelines on designing the Settings. some user interface design sort of thing.

gnome is missing a lot configuration options, the only fact that changing fonts or icon theme requires installing a 3rd party tool is quite irritating, but the system settings look tidy and consistent.
KDE is on the opposite side: very deep configuration possible, but disposed in very different and sometimes difficult to find ways.
it would look like many people have been working on it, and each one in his own way and not talking to the others.

there was already some talk about all this but for the moment nothing more, as far as I know
User avatar Brilliant Deve
Registered Member
Posts
33
Karma
0
OS
well, as all System Settings had been ported several times thruow the KDE development, KDE2,3 and current version of KDE4 this lead to degreed user Interface Design since in every incremental new options & configurations added to the previous design which really effected the usability.

for sure redesign System Settings isn't an easy task, but we could approach it by diving the work in several steps. At early stage of the Task we'll resolve the confusion in some options's names and options's arrangement (since Some of them are grouped in unrelated Section).Then we'll look inside each option to improve the UI , Icons as well as the documentation.

Resign System Settings is not a task to enhance the Usability only but also for excellent KDE 5 Port.

Last edited by Brilliant Deve on Mon May 21, 2012 10:13 am, edited 3 times in total.
User avatar Brilliant Deve
Registered Member
Posts
33
Karma
0
OS
poomerang wrote:there was already some talk about all this but for the moment nothing more, as far as I know

thanks for post this link, it was original inspiration of this vision.

 
Reply to topic

Bookmarks



Who is online

Registered users: afiestas, arojas, avishekk, Baidu [Spider], Bing [Bot], bjoernbalazs, Cris70, edmael, einar, epsi1on, Exabot [Bot], ggael, Google [Bot], google01103, Hans, ivan, jgrulich, joshaughnessy, jstaniek, koriun, La Ninje, Majestic-12 [Bot], MSNbot Media, ooker, progdan, scummos, sinclair, Sogou [Bot], TheraHedwig, Tioz, Yahoo [Bot]