#716 [bug] Tab context menu is opposite of what is should be.

v1.23
open
nobody
5
2014-03-21
2014-03-21
pythonista
No

Bug:
The tab context menu (right-click menu on a tab) is displayed opposite of what it should be.

Description:
When you right-click on a tab the context menu is displayed with the following three sections (separated by dividers):

  • shortcuts to switch to other tabs
  • 'Open in New Window'
  • 'Close', 'Close Other Documents', 'Close All'

The correct order should be..

  • 'Close', 'Close Other Documents', 'Close All'
  • 'Open in New Window'
  • shortcuts to switch to other tabs

..because of usability reasons. Tab-related functions that are specific to that tab should appear at the TOP and always remain IN THE SAME PLACE. The 'Close' & 'Open' sections should not move to different areas of the context menu.

If a user has many tabs open the first section (shortcuts to other tabs) dynamically grows - forcing the remaining two sections of the context menu to the bottom. In the attached picture there are only three documents but imagine how unwieldy this would be with 10, 15 or even 20 tabs open in a larger project.

This is a usability issue and really should be fixed. Imagine if a light switch in your home moved vertically up and down the wall depending on how many other lights were on in the house. Sure - you could still turn off the lights but I'm sure you'll agree that it's better when the switch is in the same spot (especially if the lights are out and you can't see). Right?

Steps to reproduce:

  1. Start Geany
  2. Preferences > Interface > Notebook tabs > uncheck 'Show close buttons'
  3. Open 10-15 documents in the editor
  4. Try to close a tab(s) efficiently and quickly using the right-click dialog menu

Other related thoughts:

The 'Close All' option probably should be removed from the tab context menu. Anything in that menu should be 'in context' to the selected tab. 'Close All' is sufficiently broad enough and the end result is essentially a blank workspace - this can already be accomplished from the 'Close All' option in the 'File' menu. I don't know anyone who actively uses the 'Close All' option from the tabs themselves.

Also..

I've never been fond of how the shortcuts to the other tabs section are implemented. It just seems that a dialog menu should be clear, clean and easy to find what you want - quickly. My suggestion would be to move that whole section to a submenu/flyout under the option 'Switch to..'. When a user right-clicks a tab the new dialog menu sections would look similar to this:

  • 'Close', 'Close Other Documents'
  • 'Open in New Window'
  • 'Switch to..'

When the user clicks (or optionally hovers over) 'Switch to..' they see the list of shortcuts to the other tabs that exists now as the first section of the tab context menu . I think it would be more useful if this list was alphabetized because in my experience I find it easier to remember what a document was called then to remember the order in which I last opened it (this is especially true in a long session). Maybe add a 'Sort other tabs alphabetically in the "Switch to.." menu' option in preferences and let the user decide which works better? What do you think?

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