Bug Hunting Session
Bug 66472 - A suggestion for better ergonomics for column, row, and cell actions in Calc
Summary: A suggestion for better ergonomics for column, row, and cell actions in Calc
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: Calc (show other bugs)
Version:
(earliest affected)
unspecified
Hardware: Other All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
URL:
Whiteboard:
Keywords: needsUXEval
Depends on:
Blocks: Calc-UX Cell-Management
  Show dependency treegraph
 
Reported: 2013-07-01 20:47 UTC by Laurent Lyaudet
Modified: 2019-02-03 22:32 UTC (History)
3 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:


Attachments
Height comparison between the proof of concept and LibreOffice (57.56 KB, image/png)
2013-08-18 15:40 UTC, Laurent Lyaudet
Details

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Description Laurent Lyaudet 2013-07-01 20:47:11 UTC
Hi,

The ergonomics of Calc could be made more efficient (need less click, movements from the user to do the same action).
When you want to apply an action to all columns, all rows, or all cells, you have to do the following :
click the X zone
X|B|C
-
1|
-
2|
then right click on columns headers for column actions,
right click on row "headers" for row actions, 
right click on cells for cells actions.
Then you must add the number of clicks for each action.

I'll take an example :
Suppose you want to unhide all hidden columns and all hidden rows.
You have to click 5 times
- X zone
- right click column, click unhide
- right click row, click unhide

I propose the X zone to be replaced by the following visual element,
split the X zone in 3 parts like this
  __
 | /|
 |/\|
and make all three zones clickable and right clickable:
- right part selects all columns and make it possible to apply actions (from contextual menu or other actions) to all columns
- lower part selects all rows and make it possible to apply actions (from contextual menu or other actions) to all rows
- upper left part selects all columns, rows, cell and make it possible to apply actions (from contextual menu or other actions) to all columns and/or all rows or all cells

I would like to name this element of ergonomics a triforce as a tribute to Zelda :D
(ok it doesn't exactly looks like a triforce but... Imagine saying to someone "click the triforce on your spreadsheet !"  It's much better than clicking "upperleft corner")
Hence, we could say right triforce, down triforce and triforce for right part, lower part, and upper left part respectively.

While the contextual menu when right clicking right triforce or down triforce is the same as right clicking columns or rows (after clicking X zone),
the contextual menu for the triforce is new.
It must be split in two parts :
- actions that can apply to both rows and columns
- actions that apply to cells

Back to the example, now you just need 2 clicks instead of 5 (right click triforce, click unhide)
The number of mouse movements required would similarly be decreased.

Note that there is no UI regression. Any user can still work the old way by left clicking the triforce then right clicking rows, columns or cells.

We can rename the triforce or ask Nintendo permission to use this name in official documentation, it would just be the cheery on the cake.
But what is truly important is the ergonomics.
I hope I clearly presented my idea.

Best regards,
   Laurent Lyaudet
Comment 1 Laurent Lyaudet 2013-07-11 17:43:07 UTC
Alternativaly, we could use the following design
  ___
 |_| |
 |  \|
instead of
  __
 | /|
 |/\|
Comment 2 Urmas 2013-08-12 22:32:46 UTC
How do you imagine a segmented button having a height of a header row? There's no space for that.
Comment 3 Laurent Lyaudet 2013-08-13 18:05:29 UTC
(In reply to comment #2)
> How do you imagine a segmented button having a height of a header row?
> There's no space for that.

Wow! That's a balanced comment ><. I already tought about this problem and in fact the second design is an idea I had while thinking about this problem.
I thought it would do no harm to increase the height of column headers.
When I look at the size of the X cell, I think it's just near the limit to make it easy (note that it will require less precision than dragging the limit between two columns...). 
I need to try to see what it gives. I'll try to do a proof of concept this week-end in html to validate the dimensions that are needed.

In fact, there could be an option to choose between the two "triforce" designs (with a small increase in headers height) or no triforce.

What do you think of the gain of time (energy, muscular stress, etc.) for all the users? Is it negligible?
Comment 4 Laurent Lyaudet 2013-08-18 15:38:16 UTC
Hi, 

I did a proof of concept here:
http://lyaudet.olympe.in/proofOfConceptTriforce_eng.html

You can try it, it is easy to do despite of the size.
Of course it would be easier if we decide to increase the height.

I join a screen capture to show the height in pixels corresponds to the height in Libre Office.

Best regards,
   Laurent Lyaudet
Comment 5 Laurent Lyaudet 2013-08-18 15:40:16 UTC
Created attachment 84203 [details]
Height comparison between the proof of concept and LibreOffice
Comment 6 Bernhard Dippold 2013-10-30 10:08:58 UTC
Hi Laurent, I don't know if you already joined the Design team at LibO (look at http://www.libreoffice.org/get-involved/ux-visual-designers/) - perhaps you could get supporters for your idea over there...
Comment 7 Laurent Lyaudet 2013-10-30 19:51:56 UTC
(In reply to comment #6)
> Hi Laurent, I don't know if you already joined the Design team at LibO (look
> at http://www.libreoffice.org/get-involved/ux-visual-designers/) - perhaps
> you could get supporters for your idea over there...

Hi Bernhard,
Many thanks for the suggestion.
Comment 8 Laurent Lyaudet 2017-05-25 11:34:45 UTC
Hi,

My old website at lyaudet.olympe.in has been down for a few years.
The proof of concept is now available on my new website :
http://lyaudet.eu/laurent/proofOfConceptTriforce_eng.html

Best regards,
   Laurent Lyaudet
Comment 9 Thomas Lendo 2019-02-03 22:31:24 UTC Comment hidden (no-value)