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Ubuntu GUI

Ubuntu 14.04 Brings Back Menus In Application Windows 255

sfcrazy writes "Canonical is bringing back menu integration with application windows. In 14.04 there will be an option for users to enable menus in application windows. That's a huge u-turn from Mark's stand on Global Menus which upset a lot of Ubuntu users."
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Ubuntu 14.04 Brings Back Menus In Application Windows

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  • Like it matters? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I did not realize people still use Ubuntu.

    • What do you suggest instead?
      • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

        Mint. Debian. Fedora.

        HELL. Those morons at Canonical just decided they will refuse to support video decode support in libre drivers because of 8M of "bloat". Unf*ckingbelievable.

        Way to kick multi-media users in the balls there Mark.

      • by Lumpy ( 12016 )

        Debian. it works a lot better.

    • by mrvan ( 973822 )

      I use xmonad as window manager, which AFAIK is not installed out of the box on any distro but on ubuntu takes me around 2 minutes to set up (using existing .files). I use it mainly for programming but also some gaming, but I never have bleeding edge hardware.

      I figure I could just as well use debian or mint, I don't really think I would notice any difference as long as the package repository is reasonably stocked. I use ubuntu because it is my first linux experience that I used for more than a week, and beca

  • Focus follows mouse (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sunderland56 ( 621843 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @09:48PM (#46301045)

    As a big fan of focus-follows-mouse, this will finally make Ubuntu at least *usable*, if not pretty. FFM is in direct odds with global menus.

    Bonus points if they label the configuration settings "be like a Mac" and "be like every other computer on the planet". Maybe this signals the end of the continual macification of Unity?

    • by zakkudo ( 2638939 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @10:56PM (#46301381)

      FFM is not actually fundimentally incompatible with focus-follows-mouse. Gnome 3 works around it by providing an option called 'focus-change-on-pointer-rest'. It works extremely well on a trackpad because you general lift your finger once the pointer is over a window. With a mouse, it gives a slight lag because your hand isn't as steady.

      Why does this work well with global menus? Because when you use global menus, you throw the pointer to the top of the screen, using fits law.

      The reason I use FFM to begin with is because I hate having to aim and make sure I hit a tiny widget or make sure I don't accidentally click a link on a webpage when trying to give focus to the window. Having menubars in windows is an extension of that problem. I would probably care less if mouse motion was actually one-to-one, but it isn't.

      • Fitt's law is bullshit however. It's stupid to throw your mouse against the top of the screen to access a menu. It's a lot smarter to reserve a button on the mouse (maybe the fourth or fifth, eg to use with your thumb), and have the menu just appear where you are. It's faster and there's less focus switching overall. Basically you get a "menu" button on your mouse, and your eyes get to stay looking at the place on the screen where they were looking before.
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward

          There's experience with that, it's called RiscOS. The mouse buttons were called "Select", "Adjust" and... "Menu".
          And it worked like a charm.

      • by brunes69 ( 86786 )

        Fits law only makes sense when using a mouse on the desktop.

        When using a laptop trackpad it makes no sense at all because of how the motion tracking works.

        It makes even less sense when using a touch interface, where there is no "throw" action at all. With a touch interface, the controls should be as close to the object they are manipulating as possible so your eyes don't need to move.

    • by X10 ( 186866 )

      I don't like FFM and I don't like global menus. I want a menu to be close to the window it belongs to. Currently, when there's a little shell window on the lower right of my big screen, the associated menu is in the upper left, and I need to make hugs mouse swipes to get to the menu and back to the window. Why did they change the way Ubuntu works when everybody was more than happy with the way it worked?

    • by Kirth ( 183 )

      It make Unity finally usable. Nobody prevented you from doing "apt-get instal xfce4" beforehand.

      Apart from being unusable for us Fcous-Follows-Mouse guys, it's kind of an "I told you so", because I never could fathom why I would need to mouse all the way to the top of the screen to find the menu of a window.. It always was user-unfriendly.

  • by manu0601 ( 2221348 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @09:48PM (#46301049)
    A good property of UI is to remain stable so that user can get used to it. It would be nice if they could stop changing stuff on every release.
  • I jumped ship too (Score:4, Informative)

    by jones_supa ( 887896 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @10:02PM (#46301135)
    I've been mostly fine with the UX of Unity, but it really is a damn laggy and slow desktop, and also buggy as heck. I thought Canonical had the resources to set things straight but the quality assurance is just horrible. The Fedora KDE spin is my current happy place in Linux world.
  • But, when you use a real computer with multiple programs/windows it's anoying to switch from one another app to perform act like transfering content from Writer and Calc.

  • by Richard_J_N ( 631241 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @10:28PM (#46301279)

    I've never understood why we can't get the window-manager and the application to play nice, and share one bar. Usually, there's plenty of space horizontally, and too little vertically. So, why not have the combination of:
    [icon] File Edit View History Bookmarks Tools Help ....... "The window title goes here" ....... _ [] X

    • If you click the title bar to move the window around, the area you have to hit would be smaller (must avoid menus) and would vary from one application to another due to differing number of menus. I don't know if that's the "official" reason; it's just a hypothesis.

      • You could still drag on the window title, and if collapsed, drag on the icon. If that's too small for some people, they could always include an option where dragging on the menu bar text would drag the window.

  • Oh thank god (Score:3, Interesting)

    by CryptDemon ( 1772622 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @10:34PM (#46301297)
    I've been okay with the dash and the side bar look of new ubuntu. It's mostly been the same for me. I switch between different desktops all the time, so I'm not particularly attached to any one or the other as long as it doesn't really impede my workflow. What I hate and still can't get used to is the global menu. I accidentally close out of so many applications because I don't realize I'm actually focused in another window. It annoys the piss out of me, and takes away the concept of the window. The window is it's own little self contained world. Menus for that window should be with that window. I still can't get used to clicking for focus on a window, and then dragging my mouse all the way back up to the top of the screen to get a menu for a window. It really only works well for a full maximized applications.
    • Exactly. I like the global menu in general, but almost once a day I close some underlaying window by accident, since it still has focus.
  • It still has Unity (Score:5, Insightful)

    by koan ( 80826 ) on Thursday February 20, 2014 @10:39PM (#46301325)

    So the rest of the menu complaints are irrelevant.

  • All of these menu's are driving me crazy. I's don't need so many menu's. You's should all's agree with me.

    I miss the craftsmanship of professional journalists sometimes, and if not the journalists, then at least their attentive copy editors who know basic English pluralization rules.

  • There actually are some good reasons for going with a global menu bar. When developing the original interface for the Mac, Apple studied the various options for the menus in depth. What they found is that when the menus are at the top of the screen, they are significantly faster to access, as they have infinite depth, thus you do not have to be anywhere near as accurate in your pointing to access them. In effect, you only need to have to worry about the left-right position of the cursor, as you can just

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Fascinating, fascinating. And they did these tests on 2048x1536 dual-monitor setups, you say? Impressive research. Definitely relevant to modern users.
    • by organgtool ( 966989 ) on Friday February 21, 2014 @12:26AM (#46301693)
      And yet it is a terrible violation of Fitt's Law, especially on large high-res monitors and multi-monitor setups. Not to mention that accessing the menu of a non-focused app requires dragging the mouse over to that window or dock icon to click for focus and then dragging the mouse all the way up to the menu bar and then back down to the window to resume work. I should install a mouse-odometer app on my Mac and my Linux box just to see how much extra movement Mac OS requires. After years of working with all three major OSes, Mac OS has quickly become one of my least favorite.
      • I work on dual screen 1920x1200 at work and I use a 27" higher res monitor at home. Mousing to the top left of the screen in MATE doesn't require more than an inch of mouse movement with my settings on any of these machines. (medium sensitivity and a tiny amount of acceleration).

        What is your mouse sensitivity set to? I'm genuinely interested rather than trying to troll you. Perhaps the aversion people feel to a global menu is something related to personal mouse sensitivity preferences and those of us who ne

    • by DrXym ( 126579 )
      I'm quite certain that Apple made a good decision when the Mac had a teeny tiny black and white screen and every pixel of vertical space was precious and when people were essentially single tasking most of the time. And even when Finder let people multitask, apps jumped to the front in an all or nothing way so it was very clear which one had focus. Delegating the menu to the OS made sense in that context.

      It doesn't mean it applies as screen sizes increase, or where users may use two apps side by side, or

  • by aethelrick ( 926305 ) on Friday February 21, 2014 @05:01AM (#46302403)

    Diclaimer: I use Linux every day for work. I use Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. I don't use Unity.

    The usability problem with Unity menus is not that they are either local or global, it's the fact they they disappear every time you take your mouse away from them, please don't make me have to mouse over the window title to get the menu to appear. While this sounds simple enough to do, it causes you to haltingly mouse over the general area of the menu bar, then wait for the thing to render, then visually locate what you want, then mouse over it and click. In the good old days, one could just mouse over to the precise menu location and click-it in a single move

    Unity now provides the user with a choice as to whether they would like to break your menu in either a local way or a global way, sadly the problem still exists. Please stop breaking user interfaces with stupid design!

    For the record, I use MATE as my desktop because all this new fangled sausage-finger friendly crap is simply not a productive place to work


  • Acorn mice had a dedicated middle button for bringing up menus wherever you were in a window.

    The other thing I really miss is being able to use the right button ("Adjust") to select a menu option and keep the menu open. I've never seen this in any other OS (not that I've seen many).

  • Good!
    Continuing in this direction, Ubuntu 18.04 might be as good as Ubuntu 10.10!

  • Global menus are fine on low resolution, space constrained screens. For example a netbook might such low resolution that a user appreciates combining the system bar, the app frame and the app menu all into one strip instead of 3. And the chances are on that size of screen that I probably have one app open and maximized the whole time more often than not.

    But the bigger the screen, the stupider a global menu becomes. Users more likely have more than one app open at a time, and they're more likely to be unma

    • That's true. Unity is basically building on what was started with Ubuntu Netbook Remix which had to work on very constrained screen sizes. They'd be better off makiing it more dynamic, so it picked an apppropriate default based on the screen size but let itself be fixed to a particular mode by flipping a few toggles in the options.

  • They should get rid of the rest of the annoying Mac rip off features too. And MS should ditch that hot corners crap that nobody likes on Apple computers in the first place.
  • Menus should have been solved by now.

Were there fewer fools, knaves would starve. - Anonymous