I have moved my blog to Wordpress at theunixgeek.wordpress.com. I will still be checking back periodically on this one as well, though. 19 April 2009


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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

OpenOffice 3 "Aqua" Interface Problems

Overall, I really like OOo 3 on OS X. It's nice to be able to run it without X11, and the interface is faster, the new icons are nicer... but the interface can be terrible at points. Here is a list of the main "ugly spots" of the OOo "Aqua" interface.
  1. Just because it runs natively on OS X, it's not necessarily Aqua. The ability to have pictures in the menus? That's definitely anti-aqua. What's with the odd button sizes and spacing? Not Aqua, again.
  2. If the user didn't specify it in the System Preferences, buttons should not have an outer glow. It's available so users can tab between controls (SysPrefs > Keyboard & Mouse > Shortcuts > Full keyboard access). If the user didn't say he wants it, it shouldn't be there.
  3. In OpenOffice Draw, there's some odd coloring going on behind some controls.
  4. If I'm in the Help search tab, with the text field selected, and I press command-A, I expect all the text in the text field to be selected, not for the Database sub-application to open!
  5. Leopard and pinstripes don't mix.
  6. Why a Windows 2000 My Documents icon in the Templates window? In OS X, either have Documents there, or the Home folder. But "My Documents" and an ancient Windows icon? Sorry, but that was just a bad move.
  7. Here's the worst, in my opinion: the toolbars. The white OOo toolbars completely take away the ability for the app to be called "Aqua"! Take a look at all Aqua apps in Leopard. Unified toolbars, hello? I complained about the same thing in a previous post.

That's about it for the worst parts of the interface, but on a positive note, I think it's just about ready to be widely used, except for the interface! Please, please, please fix the interface!