GUI / CLI / Quicksilver (was Windows -- what would you change in interaction?)

9 Apr 2008 - 3:02pm
6 years ago
3 replies
824 reads
Jeff Garbers
2008

On Apr 9, 2008, at 12:52 PM, Brandon E.B. Ward wrote:

> ... The GUI brought computers to the rest of us who couldn't be
> bothered to learn command-line syntax and the mystical inner-
> workings of an 'invisible' machine.
>
> ... for me, as a GUI-user, I have also found that once I've mastered
> a task in the GUI, the next step is to find a way to do my mastered
> tasks faster. That's where Quicksilver comes into play ...

To me the interesting thing about Quicksilver is how it *combines* a
keyboard-based interface with rich visuals in a really novel way.
It's totally different from a traditional command line in how it
provides visual feedback on matches and builds "commands" according to
its own simple syntax as keys are pressed. I've talked to the local
Apple Store about offering an introductory Quicksilver class there
some evening -- it'd be interesting to see who came and how they
reacted to its unique approach.

Comments

9 Apr 2008 - 8:16pm
jeff
2008

On Wed, Apr 9, 2008 at 2:02 PM, Jeff Garbers <jgarbers at xltsoftware.com> wrote:

> To me the interesting thing about Quicksilver is how it *combines* a
> keyboard-based interface with rich visuals in a really novel way.
> It's totally different from a traditional command line in how it
> provides visual feedback on matches and builds "commands" according to
> its own simple syntax as keys are pressed.

Interesting subject... this actually relates quite strongly to my
reasons for starting the "history of interaction" thread a couple days
ago.

Inspired by Quicksilver and Don Norman's recent article on the
subject, I'm doing my masters research on ways to combine GUI/WIMP
interfaces with CLI-esque interaction to receive the benefits of both.
I'm in the very early phases of research, and what I'm doing right
now is trying to nail down exactly what the benefits of command lines
are, what was lost when GUIs took over, and how it the benefits can be
brought back.

I made a prototype of such a thing, which basically ended up being
"ugly Quicksilver for Open Office", for a class project and got pretty
decent results from KLM-GOMS modelling as well as a real user
evaluation. Unfortunately, the code isn't anywhere near stable enough
to release, but there are some pictures and charts as well as a 20
page paper for the truly brave here (no nasty comments on the web site
design please, I am absolutely not a web developer :) )

http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~jchendy/ate.htm

-Jeff

10 Apr 2008 - 4:07am
Diego Moya
2005

In case that you don't know it yet, you absolutely have to review
Humanized's Enso Launcher (www.*humanized*.com). It provides an interface
similar to Quicksilver but based on principles developed by Jef Raskin (one
of the original Mac designers) which are briefly explained in the Archy
wikipedia page ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archy ).

Enso is an alternate approach to the same problem, allowing the flexibility
and consistency of a CLI but with better learnability, feedback and GUI
integration.

The main benefit of the Unix CLI were that it allows for easy integration of
small compontents, each one tailored to make well a single task. But GUIs,
being compartmented in separate applications, often reinvent the wheel (i.e.
how many different spell checkers do you have between your desktop, web apps
& office suite? With a CLI you could have just one, and use it at every
place where it is needed). People at Humanized write several blogs with many
insights into these subjects.

On 10/04/2008, Jeff Hendy <jchendy en cs.ubc.ca> wrote:
>
> On Wed, Apr 9, 2008 at 2:02 PM, Jeff Garbers <jgarbers en xltsoftware.com>
> wrote:
>
> > To me the interesting thing about Quicksilver is how it *combines* a
> > keyboard-based interface with rich visuals in a really novel way.
> > It's totally different from a traditional command line in how it
> > provides visual feedback on matches and builds "commands" according to
> > its own simple syntax as keys are pressed.
>
>
> Interesting subject... this actually relates quite strongly to my
> reasons for starting the "history of interaction" thread a couple days
> ago.
>
> Inspired by Quicksilver and Don Norman's recent article on the
> subject, I'm doing my masters research on ways to combine GUI/WIMP
> interfaces with CLI-esque interaction to receive the benefits of both.
> I'm in the very early phases of research, and what I'm doing right
> now is trying to nail down exactly what the benefits of command lines
> are, what was lost when GUIs took over, and how it the benefits can be
> brought back.
>
> I made a prototype of such a thing, which basically ended up being
> "ugly Quicksilver for Open Office", for a class project and got pretty
> decent results from KLM-GOMS modelling as well as a real user
> evaluation. Unfortunately, the code isn't anywhere near stable enough
> to release, but there are some pictures and charts as well as a 20
> page paper for the truly brave here (no nasty comments on the web site
> design please, I am absolutely not a web developer :) )
>
> http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~jchendy/ate.htm
>
>
> -Jeff
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss en ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

10 Apr 2008 - 8:46am
russwilson
2005

We are working on a very interesting project related to this subject that I
hope to be able to share very soon.
- Russ

On Thu, Apr 10, 2008 at 5:07 AM, Diego Moya <turingt at gmail.com> wrote:

> In case that you don't know it yet, you absolutely have to review
> Humanized's Enso Launcher (www.*humanized*.com). It provides an interface
> similar to Quicksilver but based on principles developed by Jef Raskin
> (one
> of the original Mac designers) which are briefly explained in the Archy
> wikipedia page ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archy ).
>
> Enso is an alternate approach to the same problem, allowing the
> flexibility
> and consistency of a CLI but with better learnability, feedback and GUI
> integration.
>
> The main benefit of the Unix CLI were that it allows for easy integration
> of
> small compontents, each one tailored to make well a single task. But GUIs,
> being compartmented in separate applications, often reinvent the wheel
> (i.e.
> how many different spell checkers do you have between your desktop, web
> apps
> & office suite? With a CLI you could have just one, and use it at every
> place where it is needed). People at Humanized write several blogs with
> many
> insights into these subjects.
>
>
> On 10/04/2008, Jeff Hendy <jchendy at cs.ubc.ca> wrote:
> >
> > On Wed, Apr 9, 2008 at 2:02 PM, Jeff Garbers <jgarbers at xltsoftware.com>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > To me the interesting thing about Quicksilver is how it *combines* a
> > > keyboard-based interface with rich visuals in a really novel way.
> > > It's totally different from a traditional command line in how it
> > > provides visual feedback on matches and builds "commands" according
> to
> > > its own simple syntax as keys are pressed.
> >
> >
> > Interesting subject... this actually relates quite strongly to my
> > reasons for starting the "history of interaction" thread a couple days
> > ago.
> >
> > Inspired by Quicksilver and Don Norman's recent article on the
> > subject, I'm doing my masters research on ways to combine GUI/WIMP
> > interfaces with CLI-esque interaction to receive the benefits of both.
> > I'm in the very early phases of research, and what I'm doing right
> > now is trying to nail down exactly what the benefits of command lines
> > are, what was lost when GUIs took over, and how it the benefits can be
> > brought back.
> >
> > I made a prototype of such a thing, which basically ended up being
> > "ugly Quicksilver for Open Office", for a class project and got pretty
> > decent results from KLM-GOMS modelling as well as a real user
> > evaluation. Unfortunately, the code isn't anywhere near stable enough
> > to release, but there are some pictures and charts as well as a 20
> > page paper for the truly brave here (no nasty comments on the web site
> > design please, I am absolutely not a web developer :) )
> >
> > http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~jchendy/ate.htm
> >
> >
> > -Jeff
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
> >
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Russell Wilson
Vice President of Product Design, NetQoS
Blog: http://www.dexodesign.com

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