[josm-dev] Do we need some principles for JOSM interface design?
c.morley at dsl.pipex.com
Sun Oct 14 20:38:28 BST 2007
Frederik Ramm wrote:
>> 4. Mistakes should be instantly correctable.
The undo is one of the best bits of JOSM (apart from its neglect of
selection, as mentioned eleswhere). But using it requires you to let go
of the mouse, and use (for normal people) two hands on the keyboard.
Would you use Ctrl-Z to clear a check box you had erroneously clicked?
With a high usage piece of software like JOSM we should aspire to go
beyond just being able to do something, to making it as easy and natural
as possible. I know this sounds pompous, but OSM also needs contributors
who find esoteric keystroke combinations less fun.
>> 6. The interface should prevent you making useless constructs. For
>> instance, a way with nodes ABCB or ABCDEB has no obvious use currently
> ABCB is useless, ABCDEB isn't!
Sorry, linear thinking I'm afraid :-)
>> and so should not be constructed. This gives the opportunity to use
>> these "illegal" situations to streamline the user interface. For
>> instance, if you added nodes A, B, C to make a way, and you clicked B
>> again, it would mean that you were starting a new way (a side road) there.
> Hm, the user would then expect that after ABCDE he can also start a
> side road by clicking B but instead would make the way circular by
There may be an argument for extending the "illegal" cases to "unusual"
cases. The "unusual" cases would be the ones handled by the modifier
>> 7. The possibility of multiple ways sharing the same nodes should be
>> central to the editing, not an afterthought.
>> So if a road and an adjacent area shared nodes and you wanted to
>> insert a new node in the road, it should be inserted in the area as
> Disagree - or at least there needs to be a way around that. Take, for
> example, a tram line and a road running over the same three nodes and
> assume you want to add a tram halt to the tram line: no reason in
> inserting the node into the road as well.
I think this would be an "unusual" case.
> It might also be worth giving a thought to some (possibly pluggable)
> special "mode wizards" that have all operations geared to a specific
> purpose, e.g. filling buildings and areas into an existing road grid
> with very little mouse clicks.
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