I think the problem is similar to that with the design of menus within DP3, and why the DP3 menus look nothing like the old JMRI menus.
The traditional JMRI start window menus are a bit of a mess. They've grown over the years as people add something new onto JMRI. Individually, any addition can be justified as "a small change and not to bad a fit considering what we have", but collectively the result is messy.
The solution, but its not trivial, is to redesign the JMRI start window menus, to group things together better. AND to remove things which are considered outdated (or at least push them down to a sub-menu of things which are nearly obselete). A few things will need renaming.
That solution will have a degree of complaint from experienced users who have learned the old interface, you will recall that DP3 had a load of complaint when it was first floated, but those seem to have disappeared and the few comments which are now seen are positive (see Microsoft Office 2003 to MS Office 2007, the transition for experienced users is initially difficult, though most seem to decide that the 2007/2010 interface is generally better once it's been learned).
Randall has a fair point about "DP3" being a set of start preferences, and "PanelPro" being a different set of start preferences. Possibly "Roster" or "Roster Manager" is the right term for the primary window in DP3, though the term "Roster" is very American-centric.
Walter Thompson wrote:
>I see. It just not intuitive what clicking Roster is going to do. But that about a clear as it can get.
>>From: Randall Wood <randall.h.wood@...>
>>Sent: Apr 12, 2012 5:07 PM
>>To: Walter Thompson <wsthompson@...>, Discussions between JMRIdevelopers <jmri-developers@...>
>>Cc: Discussions between JMRI developers <jmri-developers@...>
>>Subject: Re: [Jmri-developers] DP3 in file menu of DP & PP
>>On Apr 12, 2012, at 12:50, Walter Thompson <wsthompson@...> wrote:
>>> Are we changing the name of DP3 to Roster?
>>No. Decoder Pro x is remaining Decoder Pro x. What we are getting rid of us the notion that it's possible to launch one JMRI program from within another. Specially since its obviously not happening (prefs are different, no new dock icon in OS X, etc).
>>> If that is the plan I would suggest "Roster Programer".
>>I wouldn't do this. It's not meaningfully possible in the contexts we run in to program a roster.
>>> If not I think the link under the Roster tab should be "DP3", that is what opens.
>>The jmri.jmrit.roster.swing.rosterframe (or something similar, I'm not at my computer) is what opens. This component, while being the primary UI element in DP3, is not apps.apps3.dp3, which can be programmed with distinct preferences, system connections, etc.
>>> IMHO as it is now is going to confuse users.
>>This change will be less confusing to new users, since DP3 behaves differently, potentially in significant ways, than the roster window in DP or PP does.
>>Scenario: PP is connected to CMRI, DP3 is connected to a PR3. Why doesn't DP3 have access to the PR3 when started from the PP file menu?
>>In this change to having a Roster window instead of a DP3 window in PP (or DP), that Confusion is eliminated: Each JMRI application has unique system connections, and these connections are consistent no matter how the application is launched.