ASU software - pre-pre-release impressions

Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) raster at
Thu May 22 02:04:01 CEST 2008

On Tue, 20 May 2008 11:36:30 -0400 Ian Darwin <ian at> babbled:

> Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) wrote:
> > On Mon, 19 May 2008 10:27:25 -0400 Ian Darwin <ian at> babbled:
> > 
> >> 2) The ASU software features a qwerty-keyboard. It is switchable between
> >> alphabetics and numerics; unfortunately the gesture  needed to do this
> >> (a triangle drawn counter-clockwise from lower left) is a bit hard to
> > 
> > it is? the gesture is just "slide finger up". no triangle :) not sure how
> > you got the triangle thing :) (place finger at kbd bottom, slide, lift
> > finger)
> Ah, the benefits of documentation :-)  There was no doc, so I looked at 
> QTopia's doc, and was mislead for my efforts. Thank you for correcting this.

imho this is a major problem with the kbd design - the fact that you NEED a
document to tell you how to use it. there is no obvious way to put in a return
or a space or change layout...

> There is no triangle, and no spoon. There is only the finger, sliding up 
> and down.
> >> the current version of ASU uses QTopia's input manager, offering what
> >> looks like a predictive style but is  actually doing a dictionary
> > 
> > actually - it doesn't - i wrote one from scratch :) the code is ugly - but
> > it works. 
> That's impressive!  And again, I presumed incorrectly. Sorry.

well not so impressive if you read the code. man it's UGLY. but i was busy
getting the algorithms working. they now work. now i need to clean it up into
nicely isolated code blocks that have good interfaces between eachother and
later can be plugged in and out easily.

> > it does use standard linux dict files though for the dictionary - the
> > one we ship is an abbreviated one with only 5000 words - but they also have
> > extended frequency counts. have a dig around the illume package files and
> > see - it's just a text file. :) it also maintains a user dictionary for
> > personal words you added in ~/.e/e/ :) same format.
> > 
> >> lookup; I find this very distracting compared to a plain do-what-I-type
> >> keyboard, and would welcome an easy way to turn this off
> I'd still very much like to see a way to turn it off, so it works the 
> same for letters as for numbers. It's annoying 90% of the time because 
> most of the person or street names I need to enter into Contacts are not 
> going to be listed.  I promise not to write my next 850-page book on my 
> Neo, so word lookup is of limited use.  I suspect that Contacts, Todo 
> and Calendar is the most common use case for most people, and that 
> writing normal text is the least common for most people.

and how does turning it off help? that's my question? in the list of matches is
ALSO "exactly" what you typed with all its typos (or lack of them) so to enter
that - select it. i am just failing to see the need to turn it off? you may not
need it now as u are busy entering a mountain of contact stuff - but later u
will thank the lord for it. then again - maybe in your culture or social group
people don't sms much - i know that here sms is done much more often than
calls. :)

> >> 3) It's easy to accidentally start an application (thus slowing down
> >> what you're trying to really do) while scrolling the home screen in icon
> >> grid mode.
> > 
> > there is an adjustment for this - its in the interaction dialog, yes its
> > ugly - i know. i keep fiddling with it every now and again to see if i
> > can't make it behave a bit more like i "intend". :)
> Ah, thanks.

and now its got a big, easy to read and change gui config - at least in
upstream svn for illume :)

> >> 4) The Preferences that are in the top slide-down panel's Wrench icon
> >> should presumably be merged with the Preferences App.
> > 
> > currently those are preferences for enlightenment - and thus it has its own
> > settings dialog/panel like all applications anywhere on any desktop do :)
> Logically I agree with you, but for the hypothetical end-user, who 
> doesn't know that there is such a concept as a window manager, there is 
> an un-necessarily fine distinction between "what belongs to E (which 
> applies window behavior to the phone as a whole)" and "what belongs to 
> the phone as a whole".  I think it's going to be confusing.

sure - BUT doing it elsewhere is also jumping through hoops. right now that
would mean some dbus or ipc messaging system to pop up e's dialogs, or
vice-versa (everyone else's config gets rolled into e's and e execs each config
tool just like it execs all applications). but neither of those exist currently.

> >> 5) The shutdown dialog does not have a cancel or Back button.
> >> And, it often doesn't actually shutdown.
> > 
> > that may actually go - that's just qtopia's default dialog - the # of app
> > icons will likely reduce by a lot as we trim out things we don't really
> > need.
> Great. Speaking of the app icons, I'd love to see a way to hide ones I'm 
> not using, and move ones I use frequently to a non-default order (my 
> five-year-old Blackberry has this feature, for one). This is probably 
> there and I don't know how, or something Carsten can do with a bit of 
> EFL code, right? :-)

you could maintain a .order file... as the apps are simply in a directory and u
see a filemanager view :) but really - this is getting into feature land we
don't need right now. as such the icon view mode is more temporary as the other
option (slide mode) is really hard to use. i don't intend to sink any more time
into icon view mode :)

Carsten Haitzler (The Rasterman) <raster at>

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