Bug#371882: [Usability] search is not easy to find aka "a few minutes with gnome virgins"

Michael Gilbert michael.s.gilbert at gmail.com
Sat Jun 17 02:19:21 UTC 2006

Alan Horkan wrote:
>The run dialog can be useful in this case.  If you know the application
>name and type it in then if it is installed the icon will appear in the
>dialog and when you hit okay the application will run.  If you do not know
>the application name (why not?) the run dialog (or some versions of it at
>least) have an expander which opens to show a flat list of available

The users were having trouble finding a "find files" application in
the applications menu.  The did not even attempt to find the program
they were looking for in the applications menu.

>A package manager like Synaptic might be a good way to check what programs
>are installed, it also includes a search tool.

Synaptic is a confusing mess.  If I were a new user, I would totally
avoid it.  I still avoid it...but only because I apt-get is so much
easier and direct.

> A file search is intended for documents and other user files

> If you are looking for programs you are not expected to use the file
> search.

I don't think we should be in the game of telling the user how she is
to use her computer.  We should be making it as intuitive and broadly
useful for the user to user her computer.  If she expects to search
for executables or system files (due to her poor os upbringing) then
it should be perfectly reasonable and obvious for her to do so.  we
should not be forcing anyone to learn the unix way (find and locate).
well maybe it would be useful for the find dialog to say something
like, this is what i'm doing 'find / 2>/dev/null | grep fname' click
here to learn more about how to use the power of the unix shell to
enhance your computing expertise.

thanks you for your thoughts.


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