Ticket #4908 (closed defect: wontfix)
Basic Sugar UI primitive is bizarre: hover, then move, then click
|Reported by:||gnu||Owned by:||Eben|
|Deployments affected:||Blocked By:|
Sugar only has two ways of letting the user do something: clicking directly on a visible object; or something much more bizarre and unusual. You move the mouse to the object, but don't click on it. Hover there. Eventually, Sugar will pop up a menu of some sort (even though you didn't click anything). Sometimes it comes up in several pieces (e.g. first a name, then a fraction of a second later, some menu items). Now you can move the mouse onto that menu and click one of the popped-up things.
I wondered why I was having trouble with this UI. It's because nobody else ever does anything like this. "Tooltips" pop up from hovering, but you can never click on them; they're informational only, and disappear when your mouse moves. Everything else on every other UI I've used requires that you click on something before a menu will come up. (Linux uses right-clicks; Mac uses ctrl-click; etc.) You're free to move the mouse to anywhere on the screen, and bad things won't happen. Nothing will pop up and obscure the thing under it that you were about to click, for example. (If a tooltip obscures something, it doesn't matter much, since the click will go right through it.)
E.g. you have the Journal and another activity running in the donut. Your cursor is on the left side of the screen and you're slow at moving on the touchpad. (Or maybe the touchpad is jumpy and so you're moving very deliberately.) You want to resume the Journal, but as your mouse heads toward the Journal, it crosses the other activity. Your mouse ends up stopping over the Journal, but meanwhile, the other activity's pop-up has obscured it, and will no longer let you click on what you just aimed for. If you were a faster expert at using a touchpad, you wouldn't have this trouble -- but not every kid is. You end up having to move the mouse OFF the Journal, so the menu will pop down; but depending where you move it to, you could end up with a different menu popping up before you can get back to the Journal icon that you want to click.
This pop-up interference tends to happen a lot on crowded Mesh View screens too.
This form of pop-up seems like one of those random Sugar UI decisions that was made without much thought. But gradually, everything in the UI is starting to get these pop-up menus, which make it a pervasive bizarreness in the interface.
PS: Touchscreens, like what Gen 2 is currently presumed to have, are really terrible at "hovering" without "clicking".