New Tab Button in FF 3.1B2

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willens

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Dec 15, 2008, 2:31:22 PM12/15/08
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Since early versions of tabbed Firefox, I have always put a large "New
Tab" button and icon right next to the address bar, where I can easily
see it. With the new version, I am extremely dismayed that this can
no longer be done. Adding insult to injury, the "New Tab" button is
way off on the right-hand end of the tab bar, which is about the last
place I would ever look for it. Further, it can not be made large
enough to be seen easily. For God's sake, if you feel you MUST put it
there, at least give us poor users the option of putting another,
larger one in the Bookmarks toolbar.

Spiderman

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Dec 15, 2008, 2:47:14 PM12/15/08
to
willens schrieb:
I agree with you. It is going on my nerves too. I hope they make it
possible to add the "add a new tab" button on the left side where we
could add it all the time. If you know the rules of GUI design you would
know that the user is using/looking on the left top place of the desktop
at most so the button should be there. And the second thing is that many
users had the button there for a long time and don't want any changes.
So please make it possible to add the button at least in the final
version of Firefox 3.1. Thank you in advance.

Johnathan Nightingale

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Dec 15, 2008, 2:51:48 PM12/15/08
to willens, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
On 15-Dec-08, at 2:31 PM, willens wrote:

> ...Adding insult to injury... about the last
> place I would ever look ... For God's sake, ... poor users

I'm not sure why you imagine that coming into a developer newsgroup
throwing chairs around is a productive road to useful conversation and
meaningful interface change, but you may find bug 457187 interesting,
and you may find some of these addons help you make things more
livable in the interim - https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/search?q=new+tab+button&cat=all

Have a really great day, thanks for using Firefox.

Johnathan

---
Johnathan Nightingale
Human Shield
joh...@mozilla.com

Tony Mechelynck

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Dec 16, 2008, 1:54:45 AM12/16/08
to

Johnath mentioned the New Tab Button extension. Alternately, with the
Tab Mix Plus extension you get (among others) an option to move the new
tab button to the left end of the tab bar.


Best regards,
Tony.
--
GEMINI (May 21 - June 20)
You are a quick and intelligent thinker. People like you
because you are bisexual. However, you are inclined to expect too much
for too little. This means you are cheap. Geminis are known for
committing incest.

Spiderman

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Dec 16, 2008, 7:04:06 AM12/16/08
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Tony Mechelynck schrieb:

> On 15/12/08 20:47, Spiderman wrote:
>> willens schrieb:
>>> Since early versions of tabbed Firefox, I have always put a large "New
>>> Tab" button and icon right next to the address bar, where I can easily
>>> see it. With the new version, I am extremely dismayed that this can
>>> no longer be done. Adding insult to injury, the "New Tab" button is
>>> way off on the right-hand end of the tab bar, which is about the last
>>> place I would ever look for it. Further, it can not be made large
>>> enough to be seen easily. For God's sake, if you feel you MUST put it
>>> there, at least give us poor users the option of putting another,
>>> larger one in the Bookmarks toolbar.
>
>> I agree with you. It is going on my nerves too. I hope they make it
>> possible to add the "add a new tab" button on the left side where we
>> could add it all the time. If you know the rules of GUI design you would
>> know that the user is using/looking on the left top place of the desktop
>> at most so the button should be there. And the second thing is that many
>> users had the button there for a long time and don't want any changes.
>> So please make it possible to add the button at least in the final
>> version of Firefox 3.1. Thank you in advance.
>
> Johnath mentioned the New Tab Button extension. Alternately, with the
> Tab Mix Plus extension you get (among others) an option to move the new
> tab button to the left end of the tab bar.
>
>
> Best regards,
> Tony.
New Tab Button on Tab Right 0.5.9 is not what I want. New Tab Button on
Tab Bar 2.0 is what I want but it only supports FF2. So I will have to
take a look at Tab Mix Plus.

Tony Mechelynck

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Dec 16, 2008, 11:07:57 PM12/16/08
to

New tab Button
http://www.tom-cat.com/mozilla/firefox/extensions-newtabbutton.html is
supposed to install a _customizable_ button which you can drag wherever
you want on any toolbar or the menubar. You may have to get it out of
the Button Reserve (which appears on View => Layout => Customize).

Don't know why it isn't shown at AMO.


Best regards,
Tony.
--
Economics, n.:
Economics is the study of the value and meaning of J. K.
Galbraith ...
-- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"

CatThief

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Dec 17, 2008, 9:26:51 PM12/17/08
to
Tony Mechelynck wrote the following on 12/16/2008 11:07 PM:

> New tab Button
> http://www.tom-cat.com/mozilla/firefox/extensions-newtabbutton.html is
> supposed to install a _customizable_ button which you can drag wherever
> you want on any toolbar or the menubar. You may have to get it out of
> the Button Reserve (which appears on View => Layout => Customize).
>
> Don't know why it isn't shown at AMO.

Because I absolutely detest that site. <wink>

--
Regards, CatThief

To reply privately, please PM me at MozillaZine...
http://forums.mozillazine.org/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&u=25774

Kirk M

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Dec 31, 2008, 12:16:17 PM12/31/08
to
I think the initial point of this discussion was to find out why the
"New tab" button was removed in the first place from the customization
dialog box, to inform the dev's that we're seeing quite a lot of
negative reaction to this decision already (eg: seems like a lot of
folks want it back and am getting more negative responses as the days
go by) and to ask if it wouldn't be too much problem to put it back in
the way it was.

As tiresome as it is to hear it still rings true in that it's always
the small things that make the difference. The feeling that I'm
getting from the feedback on the forums is that there was no real
reason to lose the "New tab" button at all and replace it with a small
"+" sign all the way to the right of the Tab bar. A large portion of
users seem to prefer two things here:

1. The Tab bar set to not always show when only a single page is
loaded therefor; no "+" sign is visible.

2. Having the larger and more visible "New tab" button on the toolbar
to the left of the location bar.

Understanding habits being habits and all, it's often not a wise thing
to attempt to force users out of their preferred way of customizing
Firefox by eliminating that particular ability to do so not that I
would think that would be done intentionally. But what seems logical
from a development point of view does not always jive with the users
point of view especially when it comes to UI changes.

So speaking from several years of hard experience, how about putting
the "New tabs" button back in to the tool bar customization dialog
box? Keep the "+" sign, no problem there but give the users the option
to add the "New tab" button to the tool bar as well. It may seem
frivolous and/or from a dev's point of view but it obviously means a
great deal to a great many users.

gNeandr

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Dec 31, 2008, 1:32:36 PM12/31/08
to
I second this posting ... have search and didn't found the "New Tab" ...
not only to open a new tab using the button, but -- and MUCH more
*important* -- with Drag&Drop a link on it to open a new tab!!!

So -- at least -- the customize dialog should support it, so each user
could decide by him/herself if that button should be displayed with FX.

Thanks to serve the customer needs.
Günter

Mark Gosdin

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Dec 31, 2008, 3:20:15 PM12/31/08
to dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org, Mark Gosdin
Kirk,

The Smart Location Bar elicited a similar negative reaction from the
user community. One estimate was of upwards of 2 million people that
were unhappy with how the Smart Location Bar was implemented in the
3.0.X Firefox series.

The New Tab Button changes seem to have sparked an even larger negative
reaction. Since it was a less invasive change a extension was created
to reverse the change in fairly short order. But that should never have
been necessary.

There seems to be a "We know what you want better than you do." bent in
some of the recent development of Firefox ( As well as other
applications, KDE 4 & Kubuntu come to mind. ) that was not present in
the past. Hopefully the blowback that is happening here will help to
moderate that trend.

Mark Gosdin

Johnathan Nightingale

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Jan 2, 2009, 10:56:03 AM1/2/09
to dev-apps-firefox
On 31-Dec-08, at 3:20 PM, Mark Gosdin wrote:
> There seems to be a "We know what you want better than you do." bent
> in
> some of the recent development of Firefox ( As well as other
> applications, KDE 4 & Kubuntu come to mind. ) that was not present in
> the past. Hopefully the blowback that is happening here will help to
> moderate that trend.


Help me out here, Mark, because that sounds like passive aggressive
name-calling and I'm pretty sure you didn't mean it that way, but I'm
having trouble coming up with a good example.

The new tab button, used to be invisible for most users, as was the
tab strip, which meant that a lot of users weren't taking advantage of
tabs, so in 3.1 we made the tab strip permanently visible, and gave
users the tab button on the right to help them use it. In the
process, we broke the ability to customize it, which is a bug (457187)
that we want to fix, not a self-indulgent power trip to annoy our
users, nor a giddy play at schadenfreude.

You also mentioned the changes to the location bar in 3.0, which
certainly did give different results than previous versions; we tried
very hard to make them better results (and by most objective measures,
in most cases, I think they are.) Nevertheless, people found some
behaviours surprising (like the appearance of bookmarks in location
bar searches after clearing history), so in Firefox 3.1 we're
listening to that, and improving people's ability to control it (bug
460343).

Again, without suggesting that you personally hold this opinion, I
confess I'm kind of baffled at the rapidity with which people are
ready to leap to "Mozilla doesn't listen to anyone, they think they
know better" when talking about a community project we all build in
order to give it away to people and make the internet better. The
project is not a democracy, there are people who make decisions, but
to suggest that those people don't listen to the community, or that
they don't care about what's best for their users is profoundly
misguided at best, and probably pretty insulting to many of them as
well.

I should think we could disagree about a thing, and still recognize
the commitment each of us felt to Firefox users, to the improvement of
the project, and to a strong community of discussion and consideration?

Happy new year,

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 2, 2009, 7:00:15 PM1/2/09
to dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org, Mark Gosdin
Johnathan,

I will gladly help you in any way that I can.

What I am saying here regarding the New Tab Button, as well as the
earlier Smart Location Bar, is that while those changes may serve a
laudable purpose the way that they have been implemented appears to
limit the end user's choices.

I've been a user of Netscape/Mozilla/Firefox for over 10 years. I will
admit to have entrenched habits and a certain expectation of how this
product is to behave. I notice when it changes, and I have definite
opinions as to which of those changes are good and which are not good.

By no means do I regard all change as being automatically not good.

Making "Tabs" more visible to end users is a good thing, but in doing so
you've touched the basic interface and made changes that are noticeable
and annoying to users who already make extensive use of "Tabs". What I,
and I think others as well, are asking is that you not release 3.1 with
the New Tab button missing from the menu bar customization dialog.

I'm not saying don't make "Show Tabs" the default or don't have a New
Tab button as part of the Tab Bar. I actually think both those are good
ideas.

I am saying to not remove the existing behavior / options and then
release the software with a bug fix being needed to restore the original
functionality ( Like the Smart Location Bar & Bug 460343 ). Change can
be good, change that ends up needing a Bug Fix not so.

If you are baffled at the "Mozilla doesn't listen to anyone, they think
they know better" response you aren't looking in the right place or
talking to the right people. This design debate, and many of the other
previous debates, needs to be held in part in the MozillaZine forums,
not exclusively here. I've pointed out to the MozillaZine forum users
how to access this mailing list and encouraged them to do so. But to be
honest, you need to be there, communicating regularly with the
thoughtful people that use Firefox and contribute to those forums.

I hope this is taken in the helpful way it was intended.

Mark Gosdin

Alex Faaborg

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Jan 2, 2009, 8:12:59 PM1/2/09
to dev-apps-firefox, Mark Gosdin, Mark Gosdin
It sounds like there are really two separate issues here:

> This design debate, and many of the other
> previous debates, needs to be held in part in the MozillaZine forums


I've heard other people make this request as well. People on the
mozillazine forums feel that we are ignoring them, because we very
rarely post there. From the brief amounts of time I've spent on
mozillazine, there seems to be a tremendous amount of resentment
there, where developers and designers are discussed as distant
unreachable people who toss down decisions from on high and ignore
feedback. This of course isn't a fair assessment of the project as a
whole, just a fair assessment from the perspective of people on
mozillazine.

I don't know if we ever came up with an official stance on trying to
make this the developer group, and allow mozillazine to continue as an
unofficial forum for people interested in Firefox, or that is just how
things naturally evolved over time. Either way, I can see how if
people were expecting us to show up and discuss changes in
mozillazine, they would end up really disappointed, because for the
most part design discussions occur just in this forum, and on blog
posts on planet.mozilla.org. I'm not sure what the best way to fix
this divide is, or if people are interested in trying to fix it, but
the current setup does seem really broken.

> regarding the New Tab Button, as well as the
> earlier Smart Location Bar, is that while those changes may serve a
> laudable purpose the way that they have been implemented appears to
> limit the end user's choices.

The problem here is that we are often limited to only two choices due
to resource constraints:

1) Don't change anything
2) Modify the default UI in ways that break customization

The obvious problem with option 1 is that forces us to be paralyzed in
a competitive marketplace. Not everyone liked the changes to the
location bar, but most reviews mentioned it along with performance
enhancements as a flagship feature. Also, we are now subsequently
more competitive with other browsers who have implemented a similar
way of quickly accessing pages through searching titles in bookmarks
and history.

The problem with the second choice is that obviously users who have
made customizations, or who really prefer the previous interface feel
like we are not listening to them.

So Mark is completely correct to assert that we are intentionally
limiting user's choices. It's not that we want to do this (Johnathan
mentions bug 457187), but that we feel it is the lesser of two evils.

-Alex

> _______________________________________________
> dev-apps-firefox mailing list
> dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-apps-firefox

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 2, 2009, 9:04:30 PM1/2/09
to Alex Faaborg, Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Alex,

I've been told repeatedly that Firefox and it's other Mozilla siblings
are community projects. I would think that having as wide a community
as possible would be desirable. Admittedly a wider community will
include individuals who take the "You dolt!" approach to providing
feedback. That may be a price that needs to be paid for Firefox &
Mozilla to move forward, without this divide we both see, waiting to
trip it up.

Is Firefox so resource constrained that it absolutely can not support
retaining existing functionality, like the New Tab Menu button, and
provide new functionality, like the New Tab Tabbar button?

There are some sharp minds and good programmers on the MozillaZine
forums. Those people represent a resource that Firefox could maybe use
to great benefit, even if they want to argue with you about the UI and
how it evolves.

Thanks for your time.

Mark Gosdin

Alex Faaborg

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Jan 2, 2009, 10:12:58 PM1/2/09
to Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
> a wider community will include individuals who take the "You dolt!"
> approach to providing
> feedback.


Plenty of people call me a dolt here as well :) We have no desire to
avoid criticism, although I think we should try to keep development
discussion and support questions separate, just MozillaZine also
separates them.

> Is Firefox so resource constrained that it absolutely can not support
> retaining existing functionality, like the New Tab Menu button, and
> provide new functionality, like the New Tab Tabbar button?

I believe the specific issue is that we currently can't have two
buttons (even if one of them is in the customization menu) that
perform the same action. We ran into this same problem when we wanted
to create an integrated back/forward control, and still give the user
access to separate navigation controls in the customization palette.

> There are some sharp minds and good programmers on the MozillaZine
> forums. Those people represent a resource that Firefox could maybe
> use
> to great benefit

Yes, I completely agree, and the few times I've participated in long
threads about the theme design for Firefox 3 on MozillaZine, we did
pick up a few really great contributers.

-Alex

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 2, 2009, 10:50:36 PM1/2/09
to Alex Faaborg, Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Alex,

> I believe the specific issue is that we currently can't have two
> buttons
> (even if one of them is in the customization menu) that perform the
> same
> action. We ran into this same problem when we wanted to create an
> integrated back/forward control, and still give the user access to
> separate navigation controls in the customization palette.

How is it that one of the theme developers was able to create an
extension for the New Tab that does just that? I have a difficult time
believing that it is impossible to have two buttons in different parts
of the UI do the same thing. ( However, I won't say that it isn't a bad
idea, knowing that sometimes bad ideas become the standard. )

I don't believe, based on my experience as a programmer & developer,
that this is truly an either / or situation. I suspect that the either
/ or aspect is the result of a decision being made to treat the choice
that way. It is not intrinsic to the choice itself.

I'd be happy to see an explanation as to why you can not have two
buttons in the UI that do the same thing.

Thanks for taking the time to respond.

Simon Bünzli

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Jan 3, 2009, 12:14:21 AM1/3/09
to
Alex Faaborg schrieb am 03.01.09 04:12:

> I believe the specific issue is that we currently can't have two buttons
> (even if one of them is in the customization menu) that perform the same
> action. We ran into this same problem when we wanted to create an
> integrated back/forward control, and still give the user access to
> separate navigation controls in the customization palette.

Actually, the problem with the Back/Forward button was either a
performance one (when we would have offered two separate buttons that
merged when put side-by-side) or a confusion one (when we'd have one
unified and two separate buttons).

In this case, it seems to be once again an issue of potential confusion.
Of course we could display the new tab button on the tab bar and offer
it in the customize toolbar list as well. The problem is that however
the button on the tab bar can't be removed (the tab bar not being
customizable, see bug 347930) and you'd suddenly have two such buttons
when putting it back where you want it (which is bad from a UI point of
view).

One potential fix I'm not sure has been discussed already (bug 457187
being far too noisy) would be to offer the New Tab button for
customization and just hide the new button when it's actually put on a
toolbar.

Alex: Would this be an acceptable stop-gap measure?

Cheers,
Simon

Alex Faaborg

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Jan 3, 2009, 5:48:52 AM1/3/09
to Simon Bünzli, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
> One potential fix I'm not sure has been discussed already (bug
> 457187 being far too noisy) would be to offer the New Tab button for
> customization and just hide the new button when it's actually put on
> a toolbar.
>
> Alex: Would this be an acceptable stop-gap measure?

Yeah, I think that could be a decent intermediate solution until we
are able to make the tab strip customizable (which I think we are
holding back on due to the fact that it would break extension
compatibility). Although going farther I would like to literally have
multiple forms of the same control in the customization palette, like
individual stop and reload buttons, the two pushed up against each
other (on OS X), and a single control that toggles between the two.
Also it would make more sense if the new tab button appeared in the
customization palette in both the toolbar button style and the tab
strip style. Unfortunately this isn't currently possible.

-Alex

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 3, 2009, 9:09:59 AM1/3/09
to Alex Faaborg, Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Alex,

I agree with you that the customization dialog is the logical place for
multiple controls.

For the sake of the average Firefox user, who I am willing to bet does
not make any attempt at changing the Out-of-the-Box Firefox UI
appearance, there should not be any duplications of controls in the
default appearance. I'm fairly certain that none of us wants to confuse
another user, not if it can be avoided at all.

However, by having a customization dialog, complete with all the
alternate controls Out-of-the-Box, the users that are accustomed to
making changes to the UI to suit themselves can do so. This without
having to potentially resort to multiple extensions, which can grow to
be a compatibility and/or performance issue in and of themselves.

I expect to hear from others who believe that extensions are the proper
place for many, if not all, UI customizations. I don't believe that is
the correct approach.

Again, thank you and Simon for your responses.

Mark Gosdin

Simon Bünzli

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Jan 3, 2009, 12:06:55 PM1/3/09
to
Alex Faaborg schrieb am 03.01.09 11:48:

> Yeah, I think that could be a decent intermediate solution until we are
> able to make the tab strip customizable

I've reopened bug 456984 to that end.

One thing I noted, though, is that should we in fact add the original
button back and give the new one a different ID, all themes targetted at
Beta 2 and Beta 3 will have to be (minorly) adjusted for 3.1 final (OTOH
it will be easier to reuse the same code for both Firefox 3.0 and 3.1).

And to restate the reasons why IMO this is the right thing to do in this
very specific case:

* The current state is a regression for people who keep the tab strip
hidden when only one tab is open (which remains an official option in
our UI).

* The current state is a regression for people needing an easy to hit
target (e.g. by moving the button to the very right/left of the toolbar
to enjoy some Fitts'y goodness).

* Adding the button back won't add any additional button to the
Customize Toolbar set than what we've already had with Firefox 3.0.

* Most people never even attempt to customize their toolbars and thus
won't be confused by the seemingly double existence of the new tab button.

The only draw-back will be that people who actually start customizing
their toolbars might get confused by the new New Tab button apparently
(dis)appearing for no good reason when the original New Tab button is
moved to/from the toolbar. That link should be somewhat obvious in
hindsight, though...

Cheers,
Simon

Gervase Markham

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Jan 3, 2009, 4:43:54 PM1/3/09
to
Alex Faaborg wrote:
> I don't know if we ever came up with an official stance on trying to
> make this the developer group, and allow mozillazine to continue as an
> unofficial forum for people interested in Firefox, or that is just how
> things naturally evolved over time.

The newsgroups/mailing lists/Google Groups triads, of which this is one,
are here to be the official discussion forums for the Mozilla project.
If there's some technical problem, such as spam, preventing that, then
that's a high priority for me, at least.

If the MozillaZine folks or any other group need telling loud and clear
that here's where to be if you want to provide constructive input, I'm
happy to go over there and let them know.

This is not to diss MozillaZine or say that there's no role for
unofficial forums. But there's no benefit in spreading core discussion
over multiple venues.

Gerv

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 4, 2009, 10:27:55 AM1/4/09
to Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Gerv,

Do you really think that "telling loud and clear" to the MozillaZine
forums group will do any good thing for Mozilla?

Their forums may be "unofficial", but they are where the opinions and
feedback that you are missing here can be found.

I've pointed MozillaZine members to these email lists and I will
continue to do so.

I will also make every effort to spread these "core discussions" as far
as possible to the benefit of Mozilla's products.

Mark Gosdin

Kirk M

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Jan 4, 2009, 11:28:55 AM1/4/09
to

From my viewpoint I would think that the MozillaZine Forums
(especially the FX Builds threads) should be at least regularly
monitored in some way by the developers as it's a great source for
monitoring almost real-time feedback and reactions on the latest
performance/UI changes and additions that are made.

I've found over the 3 years that I've been part of the FX Builds
threads that the regular testers/users there are intelligent,
experienced and steadfast in their using and testing of what the dev's
are putting forth on a day by day basis. By not regularly monitoring
at least the FX Builds threads at the forums is a loss of a fine
opportunity for constant and consistent feedback.

On that note I do believe that regular posting by the dev's is not
necessary nor is arbitrarily sending too many users/testers here in
the risk of turning this group into a duplicate effort as had been
said here previously. However, it should be easy enough to let at
least the FX Builds forum know that the dev's will be monitoring these
threads on a regular basis in order to get a more complete picture of
how these users/testers are reacting to the changes/fixes/enhancements
that are made to the nightly builds. If the dev's indeed focus on
certain
reactions at these Builds threads that cause concern then the
particular subject
can be brought here to be hashed out.

Just an experienced suggestion.

Ed Hume

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Jan 4, 2009, 6:03:31 PM1/4/09
to
"add the original button back and give the new one a different
ID . . ."

Speaking as a themer, this is what I would like you to do. I and other
themers often will skin buttons added by various extensions. I have,
for example, sometimes seen three Print Preview buttons sitting in my
Customize window. My colleagues and I will have no difficulty adding
an ID selector to the stack we currently maintain for the New Window
buttons. However many specimens you make, we will skin.

Of course, we always beg you to make your major changes early (e.g. -
the graphic all-tabs display is now aimed at 3.2 - thank you very
much), but minor changes like this make so little trouble that showing
up late is not a problem.

So do it this way. In fact, go ahead and make a third button, if you
think it will be useful.

Gervase Markham

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Jan 5, 2009, 9:43:20 AM1/5/09
to
Mark Gosdin wrote:
> Do you really think that "telling loud and clear" to the MozillaZine
> forums group will do any good thing for Mozilla?

I don't know - that's what I was asking. If they are under the
impression that Mozilla developers are distant, uncaring and deaf, that
might correct their misunderstanding.

> Their forums may be "unofficial", but they are where the opinions and
> feedback that you are missing here can be found.

Without wanting to be rude, I don't see too many developers sighing
"Wow, I wish we had _more_ feedback on our products." We put quite a lot
of time into managing the feedback we get already. That's not to say
their feedback is not welcome, but if they are expecting people to come
and seek it out, they might be disappointed.

> I've pointed MozillaZine members to these email lists and I will
> continue to do so.

Great :-)

Gerv

Mark Gosdin

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Jan 5, 2009, 2:21:03 PM1/5/09
to Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Gerv,

I think I read a strident note into your earlier message that on
reflection was not really there. My apologies for having been snippy in
my response.

I do believe that a showing of good will by the Devs in posting to, and
more importantly reading, the MozillaZine forums would do a lot to
disperse any mis perceptions.

I don't believe you can get too much feedback regarding any project.
Admittedly the quality of the feedback can vary quite a lot and a huge
amount of low quality feedback ( Those messages that start out, "You
dolt!" ) can really bog you down.

In light of my own experiences as a software developer I have cautioned
the MozillaZine contributors that want to post here to be on their best
behavior, to be concise and clear in posting their feedback. With some
luck at least a few of them will do so.

After all, the goal here is to have Firefox be as high a quality product
as possible. Right?

Thanks for your time.

Mark Gosdin

Michael Lefevre

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 3:34:22 PM1/5/09
to
On 05/01/2009 19:21, Mark Gosdin wrote:
> I don't believe you can get too much feedback regarding any project.
> Admittedly the quality of the feedback can vary quite a lot and a huge
> amount of low quality feedback ( Those messages that start out, "You
> dolt!" ) can really bog you down.

Well, I would think that a huge amount of high quality feedback can also
bog you down.

> In light of my own experiences as a software developer I have cautioned
> the MozillaZine contributors that want to post here to be on their best
> behavior, to be concise and clear in posting their feedback. With some
> luck at least a few of them will do so.

That might work. But thinking of the Mozillazine forums, I can still
see it being "too much" feedback. Looking in the forums at, for
example, the tab function discussions - there are over 180 posts there.
A lot of those posts are indeed clear and concise, but if you take them
all as a whole, then it ceases to be either clear or concise - you don't
need dozens of minor variations on the same feedback, especially not if
the same people are making the same points repeatedly.

> After all, the goal here is to have Firefox be as high a quality product
> as possible. Right?

Indeed. But one should bear in mind that it's a product aimed at a mass
audience, not one aimed at the type of people who inhabit MozillaZine
forums...

--
Michael

Mike Shaver

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 5:01:44 PM1/5/09
to Gervase Markham, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
On Mon, Jan 5, 2009 at 9:43 AM, Gervase Markham <ge...@mozilla.org> wrote:
> Without wanting to be rude, I don't see too many developers sighing
> "Wow, I wish we had _more_ feedback on our products."

I can't speak for people others than myself, but I often wish we had
more feedback on our products. I also wish that we had better tools
and processes for managing and mining that feedback, and for people to
understand how valuable their feedback is (both to encourage it and to
help shape it to be more valuable in the future).

On the specific topic of MozillaZine, I've found the discussions of
some of Mozilla's work in there extremely distasteful and laden with
personal attacks (I was accused of taking bribes at one point), and
didn't see any effort on the part of moderators to quell it. Indeed,
one of the more vicious participants in a thread I made the mistake of
joining was a moderator, I was informed shortly after.

So I won't be going back there any time soon, and I would have a hard
time recommending that others do, unfortunately. If the issue is
really that developers of themes and extensions want to be heard, they
know how to reach us here with their distilled and clear thoughts.
If, as I have come to sadly believe, many of them wish to throw stones
and vilify people without productive or respectful intent, then I
think it's best that they don't.

Mke

Mark Gosdin

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 5:02:17 PM1/5/09
to Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Michael,

I would hope that what we end up with is a good amount of high quality
feedback for the devs that includes a MozillaZine component. I agree
that it's easy to get too much feedback and loose sight of what you were
hoping to find in the resulting noise.

I know Firefox is aimed at as wide an audience as possible, and rightly
so. However, one of the first places that users of Firefox end up
looking for help in getting the most out of this great software is, you
guessed it, the MozillaZine forums.

I'm not saying that you should tailor Firefox to the Forum Users'
tastes, but it would help quite a bit for those Forum Users to be able
to say with confidence that when Firefox problems come up in the
MozillaZine forums those issues really are going to be seen by the Devs.

Thanks for your time.

Mark Gosdin

Mark Gosdin

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 5:21:25 PM1/5/09
to Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Mike,

I'm sorry that you had a bad experience.

In the several years that I've been a regular reader and contributor in
the MozillaZine forums, I have seen times where the discussion gets into
personal attacks and hack jobs on posters. It's been my experience that
the moderators ( At least the current crew. ) crack down on that kind of
thing fairly hard.

When I've pointed people to this list I have cautioned them to be on
their best behavior. I expect that the truly serious contributors that
may come here will do so.

It isn't a perfect world, unfortunately.

Thanks,

Mark Gosdin

Mike Shaver wrote:

Justin Dolske

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 5:41:36 PM1/5/09
to
On 1/5/09 2:01 PM, Mike Shaver wrote:

> On the specific topic of MozillaZine, I've found the discussions of
> some of Mozilla's work in there extremely distasteful and laden with
> personal attacks

Ditto. While many users there may be reasonable, I think there has been
a long-standing problem with a number of trolls who irrevocably taint
discussions, and that makes the site useless for me -- I'm not
interested in participating in that.

Justin

Message has been deleted
Message has been deleted

Pardal Freudenthal

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 6:34:47 PM1/5/09
to
As far as I can see, the complains about the new tab button and other
issues on "Discovering tab browsing" is the lack of customization on
this stuff. I think a good level of customization could be:

1. Add the original button back and give the new one a different
ID . . . as pointed before from Ed

2. Create a section on Options Window > Tab called, e.g., Tab Bar
Options with:

a. hide the tab bar
b. show tab close button
c. show all tabs button
d. show new tab button:
1. on the left end
2. on the right end
3. on the right side of last tab

I made a quickly mockup showing what I'm thinking:

http://img110.imageshack.us/my.php?image=tabbaroptionsfw7.png

Regards

Pardal

Martijn

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 6:54:04 PM1/5/09
to Pardal Freudenthal, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 12:34 AM, Pardal Freudenthal <par...@gmx.de> wrote:
> As far as I can see, the complains about the new tab button and other
> issues on "Discovering tab browsing" is the lack of customization on
> this stuff. I think a good level of customization could be:
>
> 1. Add the original button back and give the new one a different
> ID . . . as pointed before from Ed

I think this would be the best thing to do, as things stand.

> 2. Create a section on Options Window > Tab called, e.g., Tab Bar
> Options with:
>
> a. hide the tab bar
> b. show tab close button
> c. show all tabs button

You mean an option to disable tab overflow? I would love that, personally.
Setting browser.tabs.tabMinWidth to 0 in about: config sorta seems to
do that already.

But it's probably wise to start a new thread about this if you want to
discuss it.

> d. show new tab button:
> 1. on the left end
> 2. on the right end
> 3. on the right side of last tab

This would clutter up the options window, while this would be made
possible by itself by the fix for
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=347930
However, the patch in that bug is not going to make it for 1.9.1, unfortunately.

Regards,
Martijn

> I made a quickly mockup showing what I'm thinking:
>
> http://img110.imageshack.us/my.php?image=tabbaroptionsfw7.png
>
> Regards
>
> Pardal

> _______________________________________________
> dev-apps-firefox mailing list
> dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
> https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/dev-apps-firefox
>

--
Martijn Wargers - Help Mozilla!
http://weblogs.mozillazine.org/qa/
http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mozilla_QA_Community
irc://irc.mozilla.org/qa - /nick mw22

Martijn

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 6:59:33 PM1/5/09
to Michael Lefevre, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org

I see them as existing users. I think it is important to keep existing
users (that are upgrading) happy.
How do you see the Mozillazine forums people?

Regards,
Martijn

> --
> Michael

Martijn

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 7:02:20 PM1/5/09
to Pardal Freudenthal, dev-apps...@lists.mozilla.org
On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 12:54 AM, Martijn <martijn...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 6, 2009 at 12:34 AM, Pardal Freudenthal <par...@gmx.de> wrote:
>> d. show new tab button:
>> 1. on the left end
>> 2. on the right end
>> 3. on the right side of last tab
>
> This would clutter up the options window, while this would be made
> possible by itself by the fix for
> https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=347930
> However, the patch in that bug is not going to make it for 1.9.1, unfortunately.

Forgot to say, this also wouldn't solve the problem that this new tab
button is too small for a lot of people, making it difficult to click
upon.

Regards,
Martijn

> Regards,
> Martijn


>
>> I made a quickly mockup showing what I'm thinking:
>>
>> http://img110.imageshack.us/my.php?image=tabbaroptionsfw7.png
>>
>> Regards
>>
>> Pardal

Pardal Freudenthal

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 7:17:47 PM1/5/09
to
>
> Forgot to say, this also wouldn't solve the problem that this new tab
> button is too small for a lot of people, making it difficult to click
> upon.
>

For this people the new tab button from the customization palette
stills available.

Martijn

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 7:18:09 PM1/5/09
to Alex Faaborg, Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox, Mark Gosdin
On Sat, Jan 3, 2009 at 2:12 AM, Alex Faaborg <faa...@mozilla.com> wrote:
>> regarding the New Tab Button, as well as the
>> earlier Smart Location Bar, is that while those changes may serve a
>> laudable purpose the way that they have been implemented appears to
>> limit the end user's choices.
>
> The problem here is that we are often limited to only two choices due to
> resource constraints:
>
> 1) Don't change anything
> 2) Modify the default UI in ways that break customization

You mean with resource constraints the fact that
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=347930 wasn't able to get
fixed for 1.9.1?
It seems to me that adding the "New Tab" button back in the satchel
would unbreak customization.
There is then the issue that you can end up with 2 "New Tab" buttons,
but I don't think that would be too bad.

> The obvious problem with option 1 is that forces us to be paralyzed in a
> competitive marketplace. Not everyone liked the changes to the location
> bar, but most reviews mentioned it along with performance enhancements as a
> flagship feature. Also, we are now subsequently more competitive with other
> browsers who have implemented a similar way of quickly accessing pages
> through searching titles in bookmarks and history.
>
> The problem with the second choice is that obviously users who have made
> customizations, or who really prefer the previous interface feel like we are
> not listening to them.
>
> So Mark is completely correct to assert that we are intentionally limiting
> user's choices. It's not that we want to do this (Johnathan mentions bug
> 457187), but that we feel it is the lesser of two evils.

It seems to me there should be an option 3 in the choices you mentioned:
3) Modify the default UI, but keep customization (allow going back to
the old default UI)
What now has been done is option 2). If
https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=347930 would be fixed,
then we have succeeded in option 3.
Or am I wrong here?

Regards,
Martijn

> -Alex
>
>
>
>
>

Frank

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 7:26:43 PM1/5/09
to
On Jan 6, 12:02 am, Martijn <martijn.mart...@gmail.com> wrote:

> Forgot to say, this also wouldn't solve the problem that this new tab
> button is too small for a lot of people, making it difficult to click
> upon.

True, but this would :) .....

http://img143.imageshack.us/img143/2951/cap102yr7.png
http://img143.imageshack.us/img143/1091/cap101zc8.png

This is using the existing 'New Tab' graphic, which can be shared
between 2 or more button IDs. The coding for this, just a couple of
lines, uses the full height of the tabbar,but without actually
breaking it, and gives the button some room on the left/right of it to
get around that existing 'squeezed in' feeling. In addition to aiding
user functionality (in reality, the active areas are near identical)
this will also aid users, especially existing ones, as to the function
of this button that will appear on the tabbar, in due course.

Frank.

Mark Gosdin

unread,
Jan 5, 2009, 7:51:51 PM1/5/09
to Martijn, Alex Faaborg, Mark Gosdin, dev-apps-firefox
Martijn,

It's like the saying, "Dance with the one that brought you to the
dance." There is a need to remember where this all started and to not
walk away from that entirely.

I'm all for improvements, like the changes that we are talking about to
Tabbed Browsing. There are some really good things, such as having the
Tab Bar be fully customizable, that make me want to seem them done.

But ... is it a real requirement that what has been in place since
Tabbed Browsing was introduced must be removed? Choice is what it is
about. I can believe that the majority of Firefox users are happy with
the default interface, the devs have really worked to make that so. I
would just like to see the New Tab Button customization stay in place
until the Tab Bar becomes fully customizable, then the issue goes away.

Thanks,

Mark Gosdin

Spiderman

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 5:35:38 AM1/6/09
to
Mark Gosdin schrieb:
I only hope that we get the button back on the left top side. The new
one can be also there. I didn't read all the comments. Have not so much
time. And don't want to read so much.

Philip Chee

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 6:22:17 AM1/6/09
to

I have been keeping SeaMonkey users in the mozillazine forums informed
of upcoming changes in SeaMonkey (for example
http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=1023055) and I've
found that if you maintain a calm, rational, and non confrontational
attitude, the other participants tend to calm down and start discussing
issues rationally. Even such contentious issues as landing the smart
location bar in SeaMonkey
(http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=983445&st=0&sk=t&sd=a&hilit=location)
have settled down into what preferences would be required to adjust some
(or all) of the new features.

I've also found that starting a thread *before* things are set in stone,
e.g. while a bug is still being worked on (for example my customize
toolbars work in SeaMonkey) and posting occasional WIP screenshots tends
to engage users in a positive way. They may not be too happy at the
direction certain features are heading, but giving the impression that
there are developers (OK it's just me[1]) listening appears to mollify
most users.

[1] I've tried to encourage other SeaMonkey developers to post to the
SeaMonkey forums in Mozillazine but the usual response is "But Phil you
are doing such a good job, so there is no reason for the rest of us to!".

Phil

--
Philip Chee <phi...@aleytys.pc.my>, <phili...@gmail.com>
http://flashblock.mozdev.org/ http://xsidebar.mozdev.org
Guard us from the she-wolf and the wolf, and guard us from the thief,
oh Night, and so be good for us to pass.
[ ]He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.
* TagZilla 0.066.6

Philip Chee

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 6:27:05 AM1/6/09
to

I have not encountered that. Perhaps SeaMonkey attracts a better class
of trolls. Or perhaps if you go in with a confrontational attitude,
people will respond with confrontation?

Phil

--
Philip Chee <phi...@aleytys.pc.my>, <phili...@gmail.com>
http://flashblock.mozdev.org/ http://xsidebar.mozdev.org
Guard us from the she-wolf and the wolf, and guard us from the thief,
oh Night, and so be good for us to pass.

[ ]Why is "abbreviated" such a long word?
* TagZilla 0.066.6

Omega X

unread,
Jan 6, 2009, 4:17:14 PM1/6/09
to
Philip Chee wrote:

> I have not encountered that. Perhaps SeaMonkey attracts a better class
> of trolls. Or perhaps if you go in with a confrontational attitude,
> people will respond with confrontation?
>
> Phil
>
> --
> Philip Chee <phi...@aleytys.pc.my>, <phili...@gmail.com>
> http://flashblock.mozdev.org/ http://xsidebar.mozdev.org
> Guard us from the she-wolf and the wolf, and guard us from the thief,
> oh Night, and so be good for us to pass.
> [ ]Why is "abbreviated" such a long word?
> * TagZilla 0.066.6
>

Not at all. Trolls are still trolls.

At one point, SeaMonkey trolls used to be setup in Firefox General ready
to talk down upon unsuspecting Firefox users. Now they just wait around
in SeaMonkey areas.

Often times the very few developers that show up at MozillaZine are
often cold. (excluding the few contributors that I know of.) I see quite
a bit of that in Bugzilla and sometimes here in the news groups. Alex
was quite different though. I'm surprised that he defended MozillaZine
here. When the theme work was underway, People were just ready to chew
him up at first. But they eventually came around the more he showed up
to discuss the issues at hand and kept them updated.

Its not every day that they get to participate in constructive
discussion where it actually accomplishes something with Firefox and
related projects. To them, Its usually "some committee" that decides the
changes/additions and if they had anything(even remotely constructive)
to say about it then tough because developers don't read the forums.

We usually just try to redirect them here to the news groups. But I
don't think many of them bother to do so and probably see it as being
brushed off or quashed.


--
------------------------------------------------------
~Omega X
Mozillazine Nightly Tester

Robert Kaiser

unread,
Jan 7, 2009, 2:17:07 PM1/7/09
to
Gervase Markham wrote:
> Mark Gosdin wrote:
>> Their forums may be "unofficial", but they are where the opinions and
>> feedback that you are missing here can be found.
>
> Without wanting to be rude, I don't see too many developers sighing
> "Wow, I wish we had _more_ feedback on our products."

I think we sometimes lack feedback esp. on changes in nightlies, and
then, the feedback we get is sometimes laden with what sounds like
something between ignorance of innovation and trolling, and then it's
hard to filter out what the real problems are. I know, it's quite often
hard to make your criticism constructive, when at first you see
something's different than what you were used to and you just
intuitively think "WTF?" and want to shoot this feeling back to devs.
But just shouting at us (devs, project leaders) doesn't help, and that's
something a number of people around here and even more on mozillaZine
fall into far too often, and what leaves us feeling we get too little
feedback and opinions, when what we lack is constructive feedback, i.e.
something we can work with (and which doesn't tell us to just throw away
weeks of hard work).

My specific problem with mozillaZine forums is something different,
though: logging in and reading web forums takes way longer for the same
amount of messages as reading newsgroup messages - and for someone on
the limit to overworking that's a good reason to not bother with the web
forums. I'm not sure what we could do against that, actually.

Robert Kaiser

John J. Barton

unread,
Jan 7, 2009, 2:58:35 PM1/7/09
to
Gervase Markham wrote:
> Without wanting to be rude, I don't see too many developers sighing
> "Wow, I wish we had _more_ feedback on our products."

Wow, I wish we had _more_ feedback on Firebug and Chromebug alpha releases.

jjb