Bug 66792 - UI: Better integration of font styles into the toolbar
Summary: UI: Better integration of font styles into the toolbar
Status: NEW
Alias: None
Product: LibreOffice
Classification: Unclassified
Component: LibreOffice (show other bugs)
(earliest affected)
Inherited From OOo
Hardware: Other All
: medium enhancement
Assignee: Not Assigned
URL: https://alistapart.com/article/user-i...
Keywords: needsDevEval, topicUI
: 60741 80694 87871 (view as bug list)
Depends on:
Blocks: Fonts-Name-Combobox
  Show dependency treegraph
Reported: 2013-07-10 20:00 UTC by Emir Sarı
Modified: 2020-01-08 09:47 UTC (History)
10 users (show)

See Also:
Crash report or crash signature:
Regression By:

screenshot from pages (107.75 KB, image/png)
2013-07-10 20:00 UTC, Emir Sarı
Font Styles Mock-up 1 (136.27 KB, image/png)
2013-07-26 13:44 UTC, Emir Sarı
Font Styles Mock-up 2 (108.65 KB, image/png)
2013-07-26 13:45 UTC, Emir Sarı
InDesign font styles picker (33.94 KB, image/jpeg)
2015-04-19 13:56 UTC, Carsten

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Description Emir Sarı 2013-07-10 20:00:12 UTC
Created attachment 82295 [details]
screenshot from pages

Currently selecting font styles is a very long process involving several clicks and dialog boxes. 

By adding a drop-down toolbar button next to font combo box, this process could be easily simplified.

Considering we could get rid of the bold, italic, and underline buttons, this could open up space on the formatting toolbar. 

Attaching a SS from Pages, which has a drop down menu for selecting font styles.
Comment 1 Cor Nouws 2013-07-10 21:02:17 UTC
Hi Emir Sari,
Thanks for the report.
Looks as a useful idea to me.

I set the version to 3.3.0 since the current situation is here as long as we know.

(Personally, I intend to take a look at the 'Side bar' (expirimental at the moment) to rework that idea to make it work effectively with styles, rather then consume space to show the direct formatting tools another time ;) )
Comment 2 Emir Sarı 2013-07-26 13:42:58 UTC
It would be useful to add such a menu to sidebar as well.

But in order to save buttons and space, this could be directly integrated into the font drop-down menu directly.

Two scenarios:

1. User places the cursor on the Font, another sub menu opens and shows the available styles. If user clicks on the font name, default style is applied.

2. User starts to type the font name on the box, available styles appear under the text box, allowing user to navigate with arrow keys or the cursor to select the font style. 

This approach would both save space and provide an intuitive interface I think.
Comment 3 Emir Sarı 2013-07-26 13:44:04 UTC
Created attachment 83035 [details]
Font Styles Mock-up 1

Mock-up using MS Word menus.
Comment 4 Emir Sarı 2013-07-26 13:45:16 UTC
Created attachment 83036 [details]
Font Styles Mock-up 2

Mock-up using partial MS Word menus. 

This shows how it would look if a user starts typing a font on the box.
Comment 5 Stefan Knorr (astron) 2013-07-27 11:48:20 UTC
Well, this is indeed useful, especially for everyone working with professional fonts. Otoh, most fonts still ship with Regular/Bold/Italic/Bold Italic only, for which we have buttons already.

Personally, it always pains me to see that I have ~10 entries for Univers alone in my font picker (which I have in a various weights/condensations). But I have a thing for fonts, most people don't.

As for the resolution, maybe it would make sense to complement the Bold/Italic/Underlined buttons with fourth buttons for more style that would pop open a menu to choose from..?
I am not so fond of your mockups, Emir, as they would create an odd look together with scrollbars and require quite complicated widgets (which never looks good in LibreOffice).
Comment 6 Emir Sarı 2013-07-27 11:55:27 UTC
Fourth button makes sense. 

For the mock-ups, I am not so fond of them either, I just put them together to give an idea of how it would look. Plus, it would require the implementation of native drop-down menus, or custom menus. Of course if someone would come up with a nicer mock-up, always welcome.
Comment 7 Owen Genat (retired) 2013-11-09 22:59:07 UTC
This enhancement request deals with the same issue as bug #60741. This one uses Pages as inspiration, while the other bug uses NeoOffice, but both are seeking to combine Family, Name, and Weight information for a font into a single selector. I just wanted to make the connection visible, because if this enhancement is implemented (and it seems more likely) the other one will need to be closed.
Comment 8 Stefan Knorr (astron) 2013-11-10 20:12:21 UTC
*** Bug 60741 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 9 Adolfo Jayme Barrientos 2014-06-30 04:18:10 UTC
*** Bug 80694 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 10 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2014-06-30 14:36:21 UTC
Hi Adolfo,

I wasnt suggesting expandable trees in my bug report, i trying to show indentation in my mockup [attachment 101991 [details]].
Comment 11 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2015-03-20 11:53:38 UTC
*** Bug 87871 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Comment 12 Carsten 2015-04-19 13:56:03 UTC
Created attachment 114907 [details]
InDesign font styles picker

Nice, I was trying to file this enhancement just now. It really is a pain to change to "light" or "black" styles for me.

I think integrating this into the font family picker has problems (as already discussed here) - it is just not logical that you would have to change the font family to select the style/weight and it bloats the ff picker.

From my UX Design perspective, I would prefer a separate dropdown menu just after the font family (or size) picker and get rid of the bold / italic buttons. Adobe got this very right with InDesign (and others, e.g. Photoshop) - see attachment.

Please keep in mind that most "free" fonts now also come with lots of more styles than just bold or italic. Also, people seem to pay more attention to fonts nowadays.

I don't think a button would be appropriate, as it is very difficult to find an instantly recognizable iconic depiction of "font styles"...

But even if you disagree with a dropdown and go for a button, I would be very very happy to at least have a shorter way of selecting font styles in LibreOffice! :)
Comment 13 Fred 2015-10-08 15:56:11 UTC
Maybe bug 94886 I just filed offers a different route?  The main challenge is avoiding significant and potentially confusing changes to the UI - in this context I like the idea of adding new "typeface" button better but it still leaves the issue of "bold" and "italics" mapping to functions that actually make sense to the user.
Comment 14 Yousuf Philips (jay) (retired) 2015-10-09 13:27:09 UTC
This bug report has 3 suggested improvements of integrating font styles into the toolbar.

1) Create a separate font style drop down menu that lists font styles and keep the current font name drop down menu exclusive to font families similar to iWork Pages (OP description) and inDesign (comment 12). This would make the toolbar similar to the controls in the font tab of character dialog, which should be easy to implement, but would take up more room in the toolbar and would be confusing to users who are used to having a single drop down menu for everything, which is the default for most apps.

2) Change the font name drop down menu to only show font family names and have a submenu that expands from each font family to select the font styles (comment 3). This would likely be more difficult to implement as we dont have any implementation of a similar submenu in the combobox.

3) Change the font name drop down menu so that font style editions of a font family are indented after the main entry (attachment 101991 [details]).
Comment 15 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2015-12-13 11:24:17 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 16 Robinson Tryon (qubit) 2016-08-25 04:44:58 UTC Comment hidden (obsolete)
Comment 17 Heiko Tietze 2018-02-19 00:09:05 UTC
The design team discussed the various options of a) access to style variations in submenus, b) splitting into two dropdowns similar to InDesign, and c) indentation of the variations. All solutions are not easy to handle, and most fonts have just R/B/I/BI that are addressed by the toggle buttons bold and italic. Plus, we have the two dropdowns solution implemented in the character dialog. So the recommendation is to 'ignore' variants meaning to collapse all DejaVu fonts into one (regular).
Comment 18 Heiko Tietze 2019-03-11 15:24:43 UTC Comment hidden (off-topic)
Comment 19 Mihkel Tõnnov 2020-01-07 12:26:25 UTC
Has the design team also discussed the proposed additional button, for accessing the styles beyond R/I/B/BI?
Comment 20 Heiko Tietze 2020-01-08 09:47:20 UTC
(In reply to Mihkel Tõnnov from comment #19)
> Has the design team also discussed the proposed additional button, for
> accessing the styles beyond R/I/B/BI?

As stated in c17, the recommendation is to access attributes beyond RIB per existing dropdown.