[Printing-architecture] Another Common Dialog

peter sikking peter at mmiworks.net
Sat Apr 18 02:57:06 PDT 2009

Till wrote:

> Hal V. Engel wrote:
>> On Friday 17 April 2009 11:54:28 am peter sikking wrote:
>>> Till wrote:
>>>> Sending faxes should be done by a print queue where the printing
>>>> dialog shows an appropriate widget for the fax number.
>>> even that is mind-boggling incomprehensible for users.
>>> I will fight tooth and nail to avoid that solution.
>> I also agree with Peter here.  A user sending a fax expects to see  
>> fax
>> specific dialogs.  Till however is correct that hidden below that  
>> fax specific
>> UI could be a print queue but the user should NEVER be aware of how  
>> it is
>> actually implemented.
> So fax should look like this: On the implementation side we have print
> queues for faxes, the PPD files of fax queues contain the following  
> extension:
> *cupsFax: true
> (see http://www.cups.org/documentation.php/doc-1.4/spec-ppd.html).  
> This
> allows distinguishing print queues and fax queues. Applications are
> supposed to have a "Print ..." and a "Fax ..." entry.

yes. this is the key to making things normal for users.

> If a queue type
> (printing, faxing) is not present, the corresponding menu entry gets
> grayed out.

both will need access installation workflow (the next project...)

> Clicking "Print ..." gives the printing dialog as Peter has
> designed it, but only print queues (and no fax queues) are listed.

yes. excellent.

> Clicking "Fax ..." gives a dialog (slightly) different to Peter's
> printing dialog, for example with an additional "zone" with one or  
> more
>  widgets to choose the fax destination (by typing in, calling address
> book, ...) and only the fax queues listed. The exact design for an  
> ideal
> fax dialog can also be left to OpenPrinting. WDYT?

just like I said for the pdf export dialog: it will be a cousin
of the print dialog, not a twin brother. we can recycle a lot of
good UI concepts and code for these dialogs, but sound UI practice
demands that the design of each is optimised for the particular


         founder + principal interaction architect
             man + machine interface works

         http://mmiworks.net/blog : on interaction architecture

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