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Feature #17077

Consider replacing the "Applications" menu with a button to the "Activities" overview

Added by sajolida 3 months ago. Updated 7 days ago.

Status:
Confirmed
Priority:
Low
Assignee:
-
Category:
-
Target version:
-
Start date:
Due date:
% Done:

0%

Feature Branch:
Type of work:
Test
Blueprint:
Starter:
Affected tool:

Description

See the discussion on https://lists.autistici.org/message/20190831.084510.f7549ca4.en.html.

I should be relatively easy to replace the "Activities" button with a "Applications ⏷" and thus have the exact same discoverability for it.

We should still be careful about the usability of the Activities overview itself and make sure that it's actually better than the current state of things before doing the change.

It might be possible to always display a dock, like Ubuntu does.


Related issues

Related to Tails - Feature #14544: Spend software developer time on smallish UX improvements In Progress 08/31/2018

History

#1 Updated by intrigeri 2 months ago

We should still be careful about the usability of the Activities overview itself and make sure that it's actually better than the current state of things before doing the change.

I won't argue endlessly here, but with the info I have in hand, IMO you're setting the bar needlessly high with "better than the current state of things": from my perspective, as long as the new thing is not worse for users than the current state of things, we have other motivations to justify the move. That is, mostly: making the Tails code base easier to maintain, so we can focus development resources in other areas… where we can for example improve UX :)

This being said, I also understand that you may prefer not to spend your limited UX work time on something that will actually not improve UX directly.

Cheers!

#2 Updated by sajolida about 2 months ago

Yep. Any change that we'd do in this area will imply cost in UX, help
desk, and technical writing work PLUS change aversion and possible
frustration in our users (if it's not clearly better). We need to make
sure that all this extra burden on non-coders and users are well
balanced by the effort saved to coders.

#3 Updated by sajolida about 2 months ago

The release of GNOME 3, which replaced the Applications menu (along with many other changes), resulted in a huge shit storm and even a bunch of forks. I attribute it to poor user research and change management, not to the design itself. I really don't want something like this to happen to Tails. Changing only the Applications menu is unlikely to trigger something this big but it's an example of a pretty bad UX process, which I want to avoid.

#4 Updated by sajolida about 1 month ago

  • Related to Feature #14544: Spend software developer time on smallish UX improvements added

#5 Updated by sajolida about 1 month ago

  • Description updated (diff)

#6 Updated by sajolida 7 days ago

From the interview with Roberto:

T: What would you like to change in Tails if you could?

R: I find the menu system cumbersome. I lack something more intuitive like
the application bar in Ubuntu, like in Apple. It's complicated to access the
right application with the touchpad as it sometimes jumps from one menu to
the other. Sometimes I use a mouse because it's more comfortable.

T: I open the Activities overview. Have you seen this screen before?

R: No. It's like a multitask screen. But it's an application that will disappear
so I don't think that's is a good solution. It's still 1 extra click.

https://tails.boum.org/contribute/how/user_experience/interviews/roberto/

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