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WHY would you do this (bad interface decision)???  RSS feed

 
lowercase baba
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I was working the other day, typing something into an email. I had one of those "something needs to be installed, which may require a re-boot. Do you want to do this now?" windows appear. (This is how updates are pushed out to all our machines - it's a legitimate window).

Unfortunately, this window appeared with focus, and the 'accept' button enabled. It just happened to appear the instant before I hit the 'enter' key. So, before I could even register that it was there, I had accepted the message. two minutes later, I got a 'your machine will re-boot in 2 minutes. Save all your work now' messages, with no way to abort it.

WHY WOULD ANY INTELLIGENT PERSON THINK IT'S A GOOD IDEA TO SET THE FOCUS ON THAT WINDOW AND THAT BUTTON? SURELY someone has realized by now that people may actually be TYPING on their PCs at that moment, yes?
 
Ranch Hand
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Because I think annoying my users is a good thing, or something.

I hate that, Windows is the wost with automatic updates. At least it does force a reboot but a pop up every minute or so it more than annoying. I will reboot when I am ready.
 
Rancher
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Originally posted by fred rosenberger:
WHY WOULD ANY INTELLIGENT PERSON THINK IT'S A GOOD IDEA TO SET THE FOCUS ON THAT WINDOW AND THAT BUTTON?



But that is what a System Modal Dialog box does. Its been doing that since at least Windows 386/2.11, which is the first Windows that I wrote code for.

A better question might be: why in the world hasn't the System Modal Dialog Box been deprecated since, say, Windows 3.1?
 
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
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I have no problem with that window being modal. My problem is why would you set a default focus on any button? i would force the user to pick a button with the mouse, rather than default on one or he other.

or build in a delay at least where the control wasn't active for a few seconds, but visible.
 
Pat Farrell
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OK, I'll let you have it be modal, but it seems to be acting like System Modal, rather than App Modal.

The focus think is natural, if they only have the "OK" button in the box.

Almost as idiotic is having such a box with "OK" and "Cancel" without explaining what does what. Cancel mean cancel the reboot? OK mean OK to not reboot? or reboot now? Since it is trivial to change the copy on the buttons, it should be fixed to something like:

Click to reboot now
Click to reboot later.

Which would work for you as long as the default focus is on later
 
Pat Farrell
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More fundamentally, making the user reboot for anything besides installing a new kernel is a sin.
 
author and cow tipper
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I think you should be able to hot-swap kernels as well.

-Cameron McKenzie
 
Rusty Shackleford
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Originally posted by Cameron Wallace McKenzie:
I think you should be able to hot-swap kernels as well.

-Cameron McKenzie



Wouldn't that be exciting?
 
Pat Farrell
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Originally posted by Cameron Wallace McKenzie:
I think you should be able to hot-swap kernels as well.


That was one of the drivers for the micro-kernel model, have as little as possible in the kernel, so you can change all the rest.

I think the telco switch guys can swap kernels, they do amazing stuff to keep it up 24/7, no joke, no excuses.
 
Bartender
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I think the Amiga had "safe" pop-up dialogs that didn't steal focus. I know that the command windows were sensitive to whether or not you were actively typing. I also had it set so that the mouse pointer would disappear when you started typing near it. Supposedly there's a Linux version of that, but not not as a Fedora RPM last time I looked. I miss that stuff.

Speaking of Linux, if I remember correctly, somebody actually was playing around with hot-swappable kernels.

Linux doesn't require reboots as often as Windows in large part because Windows locks DLLs by name and Linux locks by inode. And Windows does hard locks on a lot of DLLs. The only time that many DLLs are unlocked is in the early boot stages.

Also Linux can support multiple library versions at the same time. Which not only avoids a lot of that mess, it also cuts down on DLL Hell.
[ July 02, 2008: Message edited by: Tim Holloway ]
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
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