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> A New Gui/wm For My Z, I whipped this up this morning...
post Jan 20 2007, 02:11 PM
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I have been thinking of building a new GUI for my Z. All of the others have tried have little things that bugged me, so instead of complaining I decided to work on it. If I never finish it, maybe I can inspire someone else to so. Here is what I want out of my GUI:

1) Scriptable
I'm going to see how much I can do in python
2) Everything in one screen.
I don't need a bunch of open windows on a PDA
3) Different
Why do everything over again?

A uploaded some of the mock ups to show for criticism. I know they are rough, but as a proof of concept they work.

So here are my mock ups and quick descriptions.

*The right side of the screen reserved is for icons that launch the most important functions. This puts the items that users use the most right in front of them. A user can tap these icons without covering the rest of the screen with their hand. The center data area is grayed slightly for contrast. It is sized for widescreen data with a ratio of 16:9
*The bottom menu is for user notification. The icon show here lets the user know he has new email.
*The "today" screen is the best example of moving items to the desktop. Instead of launching a new window, your schedule is displayed in a data area. The mock up could use a darker grey in the data area.

Playing media is one of my favorite uses for my zaurus. This mock up shows a movie playing in the data area. For video the default behavior will be to play in the data area, but the ability for users to violate the rule single window rule, by adding a fullscreen function, may be necessary. It looks fine in the mock up, but on the Z it is much smaller.

While it would be nice to have all apps in the data area of our GUI's window, we need to let users start the old programs they need. One day it might not be necessary to use multiple windows but for a start the GUI will launch X programs with a light WM like fluxbox.

Cool idea? Waiste of time?
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post Mar 7 2007, 01:14 AM
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This looks like a really great idea.
Very clean and appealing look! And very functional, too. The user will have no troubles with window sizes etc.

However, I would definitely enlarge the area for program display and make the cons smaller...

Programs probably have to be modified and recompiled in order to adapt to this screen area size and to be compatible with the only-one-window paradigm, right?

Are you using pdaXrom as a basis?
Which programs could you make run cleanly in this environment already?

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post Mar 7 2007, 08:55 AM
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It turns out getting married takes more time the I thought. I had what I thought was I good idea and opened my mouth, on the forum, before I should have. I'll have more time to work on it latter this month, when I get back from the honeymoon.

I think I'll play with expanding the windows area to cover most (all?)of the screen width. That means smaller Icons, but I love pretty icons.

I'm actually planning to test this on my Mac in a nested X session. But I'll move it over to the Z when I get enough of it done to actually use. Unless there are specific obstacles, I hope this will run on any ROM that can run X and python.

I've shifted the idea slight away from a window manager. Its more of a data display manager. Most programs just wouldn't work in this format, so I'll use what I can and add everything else. Think iLife + PIM integrated into one simple GUI. Later I'll try to shoehorn specific programs like abiword, into the GUI.
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