#48 Select Tool improvements


IMHO, the Select tool should select all components and wires that intersect the selection rectangle instead of only selecting elements that are surrounded by the selection rectangle. At least on the Mac, this is generally the case in any graphical application.

It would also be nice if the selected elements would be highlighted in real time when dragging the selection rectangle. This would greatly reduce the number of tries I need to make a selection of all the parts I want to select.



  • Carl Burch

    Carl Burch - 2010-12-09

    I certainly agree it would be nice if selected elements were highlighted in real-time.

    However, determining inclusion based on intersection isn't as universal as you posit. In Inkscape - hardly an obscure graphical package - it works exactly as in Logisim: A component is selected only if it lies entirely within the selected rectangle. I understand, though, that other applications work as you describe - MacOS's Finder is I think a notable example of the intersection approach. Window's interface. (As an aside, the file browser in Windows also works something like this. But not quite - it is something of a hybrid that I don't entirely understand. Maybe it counts something as selected when it overlaps the selection rectangle by a certain number of pixels.)

    It might be nice if Logisim provided the intersection approach you describe at least as a preference. However, I don't foresee this appearing in Logisim in the near future - not because the intersection approach is bad, but because it's just quite complicated to implement. Logisim already maintains the bounding box of each component for other purposes; but determining whether an arbitrary shape intersects with a rectangle is a lot more complex. Logisim has many components that would need to support customized intersection algorithms, and it's just not easy to do.

  • Michael Schwarz

    Michael Schwarz - 2010-12-10

    Thanks for your response! It wasn't my intent to postulate that my proposed scheme for selecting elements is an universal truth. But I am having a hard time, finding an application, that I regularly use, that does it differently.

    A few examples from my dock: Mail (selection mails), iTunes (selecting albums in grid view), Preview (selecting PDF pages in thumbnail view), Terminal (selecting lines by tripple-click-dragging), iPhoto (selecting photos), OmniGraffle (selecting objects) and so on …

    I'm not sure, wether an accurate algorithm to determine intersection would be necessary, or if an approximation using the bounding boxes of elements would do the job. I think it would work, in combination with highlighting selected elements by drawing their bounding boxes in the users highlighting color.

  • Carl Burch

    Carl Burch - 2011-03-07

    Thanks for the suggestions! As I previously wrote, I don't foresee the Select tool working by intersection rather than by inclusion (though I agree that many applications *do* work that way - but certainly not all). But I did address the other request for highlighting elements as they enter the selection. That appears in version 2.7.0, which I released earlier today.

  • Carl Burch

    Carl Burch - 2011-03-07
    • status: open --> closed

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