Moving notebook entries around - within the same window

Dirk Hohndel dirk at
Tue Nov 1 22:49:06 EDT 2011

On Tue, 1 Nov 2011 17:50:48 -0700, Linus Torvalds <torvalds at> wrote:
> Ok, sorry for the big html email, 

Good thing this isn't lkml which blocks html email :-)

> but I wanted to show a screenshot for
> this discussion in addition to the (totally broken) patch that is for
> discussion only, not for really applying (but it's "working" in the sense
> that you can actually re-create the GUI in the screen shot with it - even
> if it's not actually stable).
> So I really like the notebook pages, because they work on a small screen
> very well. At the same time, ripping off the notebook page so that it's a
> separate window solves the "big screen" issue pretty well, but I do find
> myself looking for a *single* window solution too.
> The trivial attached patch kind of does that - although in many ways in a
> really bad way. It would probably be better to use a hpaned/vpaned
> combination instead of a table, so that people can resize the different
> parts. Whatever - the patch is more seriously broken in other ways.
> But the patch is useful as a way to get to a mock-up of the interface I'd
> like to see, here also as a screenshot:
> [image: Screenshot.png]
> IOW, it actually allows us to rip off the notbook pages not as separate
> windows, but to become separate *parts* of the same window. I think I like
> this better than the separate window approach.
> Whaddayathink?

This gets us back to a layout that we started with a couple of months
ago - and which we KNOW doesn't work on small screens.  

So as a replacement for the current behavior it doesn't work. If we can
find a decent way to make them both work at the same time without being
retarded (sorry - drop the notebook page onto a tiny notebook that is
hiding somewhere? you're not serious) I might be more enthusiastic.

> Basically, the way the above was done was by just ripping out the dive
> profile tab, and moving it to the (very thin) area on the left of the
> original notebook, where an empty notebook is hiding. Then you rip off the
> dive list tab, and drag it to just below. Ta-daa!

> The patch currently results in gtk complaints like:
>   (subsurface:13938): Gtk-CRITICAL **: IA__gtk_selection_data_set:
> assertion `length <= 0' failed
> because my hacky patch doesn't do the proper drag-and-drop setup (see
> commit f4d50ffa3b42 where Dirk fixed my original separate window version
> that had the same issue), but I don't care. I'm wondering if somebody knows
> a better way to do this, and whether we should perhaps kill the "create
> separate windows" version entirely (or maybe people end up preferring that
> as an option - there's nothing that says you can't do both, and that is
> indeed what the attached patch does).

Definitely not. That version works extremely well on very small screens
(netbooks, all the idiotic 12 and 13in laptops that now have gone back
to ridiculously small screen resolutions just to save $1.24 in
production cost).

> Comments? Suggestions for better approaches?

How about this. Have two UIs and allow people to switch between them
with a preference. Or automatically switch based on screen resolution
and allow people to override this with a setting. And if we do this, we
don't need to do the silly "drop the page on a tiny notebook" but simply
make it a predefined layout that allows you to resize the three
components relative to each other.


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