[Thunar-dev] Some ideas :)

Alexandre Moreira alexandream at gmail.com
Mon Feb 5 18:22:11 CET 2007

2007/2/5, "François K." <daitheflu at free.fr>:
> Hi all :)
> First, I would like to thank everyone for the work. Thunar is my
> favorite file manager. As a consequence, I would be glad to help it.
> I had some ideas using Thunar which I thought they could be interesting.
> The aim of this mail is to present you these ideas.
> I think it could be interesting to talk a bit about them and share
> points of view :)
> Also, I apologize if some were already made/studied but I'm new here, heh :)
> 1. Copy Manager :
> -----------------
[ snipped the idea number 1 full text]

I won't comment on this one since my use cases never deal with copying
files. I hardly copy them...
> 2. Location bar :
> -----------------
> As I'm very interested in computing, I tested M$ Vista a few days ago (I
> like to discover new things, new features, new ideas..).
> I don't really like their new explorer which is, for me, very very
> complicated. Nevertheless, there is a great thing in this explorer : the
> location bar.
> It combines the advantage of "the button system" and the "text field
> system". I think Thunar could use a system like this one rather than the
> option in the menu bar.
> For those who haven't tested it (I understand them :D ), the bar is like
> a text field but you can click on words. For example you have :
> /home/user/projects/thunar
> And you can click on "home","user","projects" and "thunar". Clicking on
> it will drop you in the directory, just like the "button system".
> But if you click in the blank area of the text field (after thunar for
> example), you can type in what you want. You don"t have to constantely
> switch between both options.

I don't know if you're aware of the Ctrl+l key shortcut, it displays a
go-to dialog where you can type locations there. Combined with the
buton bar it is a very powerful file management interface.

I do have some opinions on how to improve this dialog, though, and
since we are in the subject I felt like sharing them:

I don't know if you guys think the same but I believe the Ctrl+l
shortcut would be much more useful it it behaved much like a cd
command on the terminal. I mean, the command could open its window
with an empty text entry, and treat relative paths in it. That way, if
I wanted to go to "subdir" from here, all I had to type was ^l subdir

I understand the default behavior on "Launch with current dir on entry
and relative paths are always related to home" is useful, but we
already have (and thunar understands) the ~/ path shortcut to use, and
thunar already handles the "~" shortcut to open the same window with
the ~/ path pre-select (by the way, it would be nice to add the bar to
it when the user press ~, so we can start typing children from Home

Well, I am in haste right now, so I'll sum it up as a
"feature-request-wannabe" down here:

Intended behaviors I'd like to see in thunar shortcuts to the Open
Location (just a proposal)

1) user types '/', it opens Open Location dialog with / in it and the
cursor right after it. (already done)

2) user types '~', it opens Open Location dialog with ~/ in it, and
cursor right after it. (almost there, just needs the added / to it)

3) user types ^l, it opens Open Location dialog empty, paths are
treated the same way they would be from the shell. That is: ~/ uses
home, / uses root (they both work) and relative paths are relative to
the current directory in thunars view.

Why do I think the current ^l shortcut is bad: because when you type
Ctrl+l you (pretty much) always need to give it a ArrowLeft or
something like that, to let go the pre-defined selection and wrting
relative paths. And the relative paths get too big to be readable
while you write it. And I just think that relative paths in an Open
Location window would be more intuitive if they were relative to the
place I am right now :)

By the way, Thunar is a great piece of software, I never got used with
a file manager (and I tried too many of them, but I'm a terminal kind
of guy) but you sure got me converted. You guys rule.

Alexandre Moreira.

> OK, that's all for now, let me know what you think about those ideas.
> I'm sorry for my english (Im french). I was better a few years ago but I
> miss practice.
> Cheers,
> François
> PS : If someone feels patient enough to guide me and help me, I can try
> to develop those ideas. I know algorithmcs and I'm used to develop in
> PHP, XML and Java. So with help and time, I think I could play a bit
> with C or C++ :)
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