Bug Hunting Session
Bug 126618 - More explanatory title for "Compare documents" file select dialog
Summary: More explanatory title for "Compare documents" file select dialog
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: UI (show other bugs)
Version:
(earliest affected)
6.2.3.2 release
Hardware: All All
: low minor
Assignee: Not Assigned
URL:
Whiteboard:
Keywords:
Depends on:
Blocks: Document-Comparison
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Reported: 2019-07-30 09:51 UTC by h.goebel
Modified: 2019-08-23 09:51 UTC (History)
7 users (show)

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Description h.goebel 2019-07-30 09:51:59 UTC
When selecting "Edit - Track Changes - Compare Document", a file dialog for the selecting the other document opens.

The title of this dialog reads just "Compare with". I always wonder (and stumble opon) whether the file I select here is the "new" or the "old" document. And if I to it the wrong way around - which happens most of the time - interpreting the insertions and deletions is very hard since they are the wrong way round.

The LibreOffice help says: "You should always start with opening the newer document and compare it with the older document". Thus the document to be opened in this dialog is the "old" or "original" one.

I suggest changing the title of this dialog to be more explanatory. Like:

  Compare with (original document)
  Original document to compare with
Comment 1 Heiko Tietze 2019-08-19 08:44:05 UTC
"Original" would be correct when you compare versions but not in case of different documents (source A and B).
Btw, we have File > Versions, which stores all versions together proving also a compare function.
Comment 2 h.goebel 2019-08-19 09:36:45 UTC
> "Original" would be correct when you compare versions but not in case of
> different documents (source A and B).

I'm not sure what exactly you want to say with this. For me this sounds like "leave the text as it is now".

I'm in strong favour of changing the text since it is not helpful.

1) The help text <https://help.libreoffice.org/6.3/en-US/text/shared/guide/redlining_doccompare.html> (which should be the same as used within LibreOffice), uses "original" or "older".

> Comparing Versions of a Document
> …
> … you can compare the changed document to your original document.
> 1.  … compare it with the older document.

And this is what I want to see as a hint in the dialog.

2) I predicate most times, a "newer" document is compared to an "older" one - which is exactly the case the help describes. Yes, one could also use this function to compare completely unrelated documents, in which case "older" or "original" would not be appropriate. But IMHO it better have a text suitable for 95% of the use-cases instead of one only half suitable.
Comment 3 Thomas Lendo 2019-08-21 07:27:47 UTC
As you never can say what the user is comparing, it feels wrong to label the dialog with terms like "original", "new" or "old".

I would prefer a short help text in the bottom part of the dialog as tutorial what the user can do here. Will the now opened document be compared with the already opened one or in reverse? But I know that such text in a dialog is no standard manner in LibreOffice. (Such help text is similar to the extended quickinfo text of buttins in Autodesk products where the behavior of a command is described in text and graphics.)

Instead of changing the dialog title I also would prefer to better describe the commands in the "Manage Changes" dialog that opens afterwards. What will be the result of accepting or rejecting changes? Does this mean the changes in the second opened document will be accepted or rejected or that one from the first document? The data of what document will be changed?
Comment 4 Heiko Tietze 2019-08-22 12:42:33 UTC
Such an explanatory text would spoil the system dialog, if possible at all. And to some extend I agree with the OP that in most cases the document is compared with the original. Together with the fact that our documentation talks about this term we should change the label to "Compare to original document".

That's definitely an easy hack.
Comment 5 sophie 2019-08-23 09:51:51 UTC
(In reply to Heiko Tietze from comment #1)

> Btw, we have File > Versions, which stores all versions together proving
> also a compare function.
For information, this file containing versions can't be shared with somebody else, it's only local and for own use