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Digitising icons

Tim Sutton
Hi Marco and others

Marco really great work on the digitising updates - its a huge
improvement! I have some suggestions to offer:

 - I would like to revise the digitising icons - they are not all
consistent and in retrospect that blue background I put behind icons
reduces contrast and makes it hard to visually separate one from the
other. I've made a quick mockup in the GIMP (attached). If folks are
happy with those as concept Ill do them more neatly (in particularly
anti-aliased) as svgs and then export to pngs. Any objections?

- The slow point for me in digitising now is atrribute data capture.
In particular working with keyboard or mouse involves extra clicks to
move between fiellds - when you capture a lot of data these all add up
to a chunk of time lost. I propose as a short term fix to make the
field names row headings rather than cell values to eliminate needing
to tab through field headings when jumping from cell to cell. In the
longer term I would like to change the ui to dynamically generate a
form with suitable widgets based on the data type being entered. Ill
come back to that in a future release though.

- the vertex marker cross hairs  are in my opinion too long and take
on the pen style of the layer which can look a bit strange at times.
As a short term fix I would like to suggest shortening the length of
the marker arms and use a standard red, 2px pen for rendering them. In
the longer term it might be nice to use little circles.

- we should aim to use a single icon for capturing point line or
polygon with its image being changed in accordance to the context of
the layer type being edited.

Once again, Its really nice work you have done, and the above comments
are just 'icing' rather than any major issue.

Regards

Tim

--
Tim Sutton
QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
openModeller Desktop Developer
Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
niche modelling tool
Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
Skype: timlinux
Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net

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Re: Digitising icons

Hugentobler  Marco
Hi Tim,

Thanks for your help. I also think that the digitising tools would benefit
from some polishing.

>  - I would like to revise the digitising icons - they are not all
> consistent and in retrospect that blue background I put behind icons
> reduces contrast and makes it hard to visually separate one from the
> other. I've made a quick mockup in the GIMP (attached). If folks are
> happy with those as concept Ill do them more neatly (in particularly
> anti-aliased) as svgs and then export to pngs. Any objections?

+1. The new icons look good and I think they are clearer. E.g. the difference
move features / move Vertex is clearer visible and also the meaning of 'add
ring' and 'add island' operation is easier to get.

> - The slow point for me in digitising now is atrribute data capture.
> In particular working with keyboard or mouse involves extra clicks to
> move between fiellds - when you capture a lot of data these all add up
> to a chunk of time lost. I propose as a short term fix to make the
> field names row headings rather than cell values to eliminate needing
> to tab through field headings when jumping from cell to cell. In the
> longer term I would like to change the ui to dynamically generate a
> form with suitable widgets based on the data type being entered. Ill
> come back to that in a future release though.

I don't understand what you mean with the short time fix. Do you mean to
enable the possibility to jump from the end of a column to the beginning of
the next with tab key?

> - the vertex marker cross hairs  are in my opinion too long and take
> on the pen style of the layer which can look a bit strange at times.
> As a short term fix I would like to suggest shortening the length of
> the marker arms and use a standard red, 2px pen for rendering them. In
> the longer term it might be nice to use little circles.

Yes, a circle or maybe a square with transparent fill would be nice. I'm going
to take a look at udig and jump to see what they use.

> - we should aim to use a single icon for capturing point line or
> polygon with its image being changed in accordance to the context of
> the layer type being edited.

Also in my opinion, the digitising toolbar takes too much space. I'd like to
use a dropdown list for the tools. So there would be only a button for
start/stop editing and a dropdown list for the tools.

Regards,
Marco

--
Dr. Marco Hugentobler
Institute of Cartography
ETH Zurich
Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
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Re: Digitising icons

Düster Horst
In reply to this post by Tim Sutton
Scalix message content
In addition to your mentioned ideas all layers in editing mode should be signed as toggled to editing in the legend list.

Regards
Horst

------------------------------------------------

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GIS-Koordinator, Stv. Amtschef

Kanton Solothurn
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Rötistrasse 4
CH-4501 Solothurn

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Telefax ++41(0)32 627 22 14

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-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: Marco Hugentobler [mailto:[hidden email]]
Gesendet am: Freitag, 11. Januar 2008 08:57
An: Tim Sutton
Cc: qgis-developer
Betreff: Re: [Qgis-developer] Digitising icons

Hi Tim,

Thanks for your help. I also think that the digitising tools would benefit
from some polishing.

> - I would like to revise the digitising icons - they are not all
> consistent and in retrospect that blue background I put behind icons
> reduces contrast and makes it hard to visually separate one from the
> other. I've made a quick mockup in the GIMP (attached). If folks are
> happy with those as concept Ill do them more neatly (in particularly
> anti-aliased) as svgs and then export to pngs. Any objections?

+1. The new icons look good and I think they are clearer. E.g. the difference
move features / move Vertex is clearer visible and also the meaning of 'add
ring' and 'add island' operation is easier to get.

> - The slow point for me in digitising now is atrribute data capture.
> In particular working with keyboard or mouse involves extra clicks to
> move between fiellds - when you capture a lot of data these all add up
> to a chunk of time lost. I propose as a short term fix to make the
> field names row headings rather than cell values to eliminate needing
> to tab through field headings when jumping from cell to cell. In the
> longer term I would like to change the ui to dynamically generate a
> form with suitable widgets based on the data type being entered. Ill
> come back to that in a future release though.

I don't understand what you mean with the short time fix. Do you mean to
enable the possibility to jump from the end of a column to the beginning of
the next with tab key?

> - the vertex marker cross hairs are in my opinion too long and take
> on the pen style of the layer which can look a bit strange at times.
> As a short term fix I would like to suggest shortening the length of
> the marker arms and use a standard red, 2px pen for rendering them. In
> the longer term it might be nice to use little circles.

Yes, a circle or maybe a square with transparent fill would be nice. I'm going
to take a look at udig and jump to see what they use.

> - we should aim to use a single icon for capturing point line or
> polygon with its image being changed in accordance to the context of
> the layer type being edited.

Also in my opinion, the digitising toolbar takes too much space. I'd like to
use a dropdown list for the tools. So there would be only a button for
start/stop editing and a dropdown list for the tools.

Regards,
Marco

--
Dr. Marco Hugentobler
Institute of Cartography
ETH Zurich
Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
_______________________________________________
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[hidden email]
http://lists.qgis.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/qgis-developer

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Re: Digitising icons

Tim Sutton
In reply to this post by Hugentobler Marco
Hi Marco

> +1. The new icons look good and I think they are clearer.

Ok I will go ahead and do this...

>
> > - The slow point for me in digitising now is atrribute data capture.
> > In particular working with keyboard or mouse involves extra clicks to
> > move between fiellds - when you capture a lot of data these all add up
> > to a chunk of time lost. I propose as a short term fix to make the
> > field names row headings rather than cell values to eliminate needing
> > to tab through field headings when jumping from cell to cell. In the
> > longer term I would like to change the ui to dynamically generate a
> > form with suitable widgets based on the data type being entered. Ill
> > come back to that in a future release though.
>
> I don't understand what you mean with the short time fix. Do you mean to
> enable the possibility to jump from the end of a column to the beginning of
> the next with tab key?
Look at the before and after screenies Im attaching. Im suggesting as
a short term fix to use the field names and row headers so the table
effectively has one column. This should require minimal code changes
and substantially increase productivity when navigating with the
keyboard using tab. I realise you can use use down and up arrows to
move between fields, but many people instinctively use tab for this
purpose which requires 2 keypresses eaach time.


>
> Yes, a circle or maybe a square with transparent fill would be nice. I'm going
> to take a look at udig and jump to see what they use.

There is a qt demo that uses semi transparent circles to let you move
nodes on a spline. Something similar would be really nice.

>
> > - we should aim to use a single icon for capturing point line or
> > polygon with its image being changed in accordance to the context of
> > the layer type being edited.
>
> Also in my opinion, the digitising toolbar takes too much space. I'd like to
> use a dropdown list for the tools. So there would be only a button for
> start/stop editing and a dropdown list for the tools.
>

I dont think making it a drop down is a good idea. When digitising
those tools are frequently accessed and by moving them into a drop
list, we save space yes but we break Fitz' Law. Think about a typical
workflow:

 - enable layer editing (1 click)
 - choose line capture icon (1 click)
 - capture line (n clicks)
 - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
 - save layer editing (1 click)
 - resume layer editing (1 click)

Even in that simple scenario where other digitising tools arent being
used it becomes this with a drop down icon toolbox:


 - enable layer editing (2 click)
 - choose line capture icon (2 click)
 - capture line (n clicks)
 - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
 - save layer editing (2 click)
 - resume layer editing (2 click)

Perhaps worse than the number of clicks is the break in workflow as
you need to do the icon selection process. I think we can be more
smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.

Regards

Tim


> Regards,
> Marco
>
> --
> Dr. Marco Hugentobler
> Institute of Cartography
> ETH Zurich
> Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
>


--
Tim Sutton
QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
openModeller Desktop Developer
Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
niche modelling tool
Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
Skype: timlinux
Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net

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Re: Digitising icons

Hugentobler  Marco
Hi Tim,

>Look at the before and after screenies Im attaching. Im suggesting as
>a short term fix to use the field names and row headers so the table
>effectively has one column. This should require minimal code changes
>and substantially increase productivity when navigating with the
>keyboard using tab. I realise you can use use down and up arrows to
>move between fields, but many people instinctively use tab for this
>purpose which requires 2 keypresses eaach time.

Ah yes, this makes sense. I thought you were talking about the attribute table, not the attribute dialog. Therefore my confusion.

>I dont think making it a drop down is a good idea. When digitising
>those tools are frequently accessed and by moving them into a drop
>list, we save space yes but we break Fitz' Law. Think about a typical
>workflow:
>
> - enable layer editing (1 click)
> - choose line capture icon (1 click)
> - capture line (n clicks)
> - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> - save layer editing (1 click)
> - resume layer editing (1 click)
>
>Even in that simple scenario where other digitising tools arent being
>used it becomes this with a drop down icon toolbox:
>
>
> - enable layer editing (2 click)
> - choose line capture icon (2 click)
> - capture line (n clicks)
> - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> - save layer editing (2 click)
> - resume layer editing (2 click)
>
>Perhaps worse than the number of clicks is the break in workflow as
>you need to do the icon selection process. I think we can be more
>smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
>exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.

My suggestion was to have the toggle editing button outside of the dropdown list. Therefore, in your example, there would only be one additional click with the dropdown list (choose line capture icon (2 click)). The capture line button stays selected when toggling editing on/off.

But ok, in other situations where users change tools very often (e.g. alternate capture / vertex modifications), there will be more clicks. For those situations, a floating window could be nice.

>I think we can be more
>smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
>exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.

This is a good solution for the capturing icons, but that saves only two positions. Or are there other icons that could be removed like this? And the number of editing tools may still grow in future.

I had a look how other GIS handle the editing icons:

Jump: floating window
udig: dropdown list
arc gis: dropdown list

Regards,
Marco

> --
> Dr. Marco Hugentobler
> Institute of Cartography
> ETH Zurich
> Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
>


--
Tim Sutton
QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
openModeller Desktop Developer
Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
niche modelling tool
Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
Skype: timlinux
Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net

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Re: Digitising icons

Tim Sutton
Hi Marco (and anyone else interested)

I've more or less finished redoing the digitising icons:

Disabled:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/timlinux/2191818025/
Enabled:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/timlinux/2192605678/

I since discovered that features dont need to be selected first to
delete and move them so I will probably redo them. I also wanted to
suggest improving the logical grouping of the icons to:

Start / Stop editing
Capture points
Capture lines
Capture polys
Capture ring
Capture island
Move feature
Delete feature
Split feature
Cut
Copy
Paste
Add vertex
Move Vertex
Delete vertex


The rearrangement basically groups all feature based operations
together and all vertex based operations together. If folks approve of
that I can make the appropriate ordering changes.

Lastly, I wondered if the snapping distance in options panel can be
specified as a float rather since if you work in lat/long wgs84 as I
tend to do  the smallest snap distance I can have is 1 degree (which
is not very small).

Regards

Tim


2008/1/11, Hugentobler  Marco <[hidden email]>:

> Hi Tim,
>
> >Look at the before and after screenies Im attaching. Im suggesting as
> >a short term fix to use the field names and row headers so the table
> >effectively has one column. This should require minimal code changes
> >and substantially increase productivity when navigating with the
> >keyboard using tab. I realise you can use use down and up arrows to
> >move between fields, but many people instinctively use tab for this
> >purpose which requires 2 keypresses eaach time.
>
> Ah yes, this makes sense. I thought you were talking about the attribute table, not the attribute dialog. Therefore my confusion.
>
> >I dont think making it a drop down is a good idea. When digitising
> >those tools are frequently accessed and by moving them into a drop
> >list, we save space yes but we break Fitz' Law. Think about a typical
> >workflow:
> >
> > - enable layer editing (1 click)
> > - choose line capture icon (1 click)
> > - capture line (n clicks)
> > - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> > - save layer editing (1 click)
> > - resume layer editing (1 click)
> >
> >Even in that simple scenario where other digitising tools arent being
> >used it becomes this with a drop down icon toolbox:
> >
> >
> > - enable layer editing (2 click)
> > - choose line capture icon (2 click)
> > - capture line (n clicks)
> > - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> > - save layer editing (2 click)
> > - resume layer editing (2 click)
> >
> >Perhaps worse than the number of clicks is the break in workflow as
> >you need to do the icon selection process. I think we can be more
> >smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
> >exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.
>
> My suggestion was to have the toggle editing button outside of the dropdown list. Therefore, in your example, there would only be one additional click with the dropdown list (choose line capture icon (2 click)). The capture line button stays selected when toggling editing on/off.
>
> But ok, in other situations where users change tools very often (e.g. alternate capture / vertex modifications), there will be more clicks. For those situations, a floating window could be nice.
>
> >I think we can be more
> >smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
> >exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.
>
> This is a good solution for the capturing icons, but that saves only two positions. Or are there other icons that could be removed like this? And the number of editing tools may still grow in future.
>
> I had a look how other GIS handle the editing icons:
>
> Jump: floating window
> udig: dropdown list
> arc gis: dropdown list
>
> Regards,
> Marco
>
> > --
> > Dr. Marco Hugentobler
> > Institute of Cartography
> > ETH Zurich
> > Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
> >
>
>
> --
> Tim Sutton
> QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
> Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
> openModeller Desktop Developer
> Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
> niche modelling tool
> Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
> Skype: timlinux
> Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net
>
>


--
Tim Sutton
QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
openModeller Desktop Developer
Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
niche modelling tool
Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
Skype: timlinux
Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net
_______________________________________________
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Re: Digitising icons

Hugentobler  Marco
Hi Tim,

The new icons look great, thanks a lot!

>I since discovered that features dont need to be selected first to
>delete and move them so I will probably redo them

they don't need to be selected to move, but to delete.

>The rearrangement basically groups all feature based operations
>together and all vertex based operations together. If folks approve of
>that I can make the appropriate ordering changes.

+1, this rearrangement seems logic to me

>Lastly, I wondered if the snapping distance in options panel can be
>specified as a float rather since if you work in lat/long wgs84 as I
>tend to do  the smallest snap distance I can have is 1 degree (which
>is not very small).

Right. The (detailed) snapping distances in the project properties can be double, but the standard tolerances in the options panel not. I'm plan to change that in the next time.

Regards,
Marco

-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: Tim Sutton [mailto:[hidden email]]
Gesendet: Mo 14.01.2008 14:19
An: Hugentobler  Marco
Cc: qgis-developer
Betreff: Re: Digitising icons
 
Hi Marco (and anyone else interested)

I've more or less finished redoing the digitising icons:

Disabled:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/timlinux/2191818025/
Enabled:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/timlinux/2192605678/

I since discovered that features dont need to be selected first to
delete and move them so I will probably redo them. I also wanted to
suggest improving the logical grouping of the icons to:

Start / Stop editing
Capture points
Capture lines
Capture polys
Capture ring
Capture island
Move feature
Delete feature
Split feature
Cut
Copy
Paste
Add vertex
Move Vertex
Delete vertex


The rearrangement basically groups all feature based operations
together and all vertex based operations together. If folks approve of
that I can make the appropriate ordering changes.

Lastly, I wondered if the snapping distance in options panel can be
specified as a float rather since if you work in lat/long wgs84 as I
tend to do  the smallest snap distance I can have is 1 degree (which
is not very small).

Regards

Tim


2008/1/11, Hugentobler  Marco <[hidden email]>:

> Hi Tim,
>
> >Look at the before and after screenies Im attaching. Im suggesting as
> >a short term fix to use the field names and row headers so the table
> >effectively has one column. This should require minimal code changes
> >and substantially increase productivity when navigating with the
> >keyboard using tab. I realise you can use use down and up arrows to
> >move between fields, but many people instinctively use tab for this
> >purpose which requires 2 keypresses eaach time.
>
> Ah yes, this makes sense. I thought you were talking about the attribute table, not the attribute dialog. Therefore my confusion.
>
> >I dont think making it a drop down is a good idea. When digitising
> >those tools are frequently accessed and by moving them into a drop
> >list, we save space yes but we break Fitz' Law. Think about a typical
> >workflow:
> >
> > - enable layer editing (1 click)
> > - choose line capture icon (1 click)
> > - capture line (n clicks)
> > - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> > - save layer editing (1 click)
> > - resume layer editing (1 click)
> >
> >Even in that simple scenario where other digitising tools arent being
> >used it becomes this with a drop down icon toolbox:
> >
> >
> > - enable layer editing (2 click)
> > - choose line capture icon (2 click)
> > - capture line (n clicks)
> > - enter attributes (+1 click for ok)
> > - save layer editing (2 click)
> > - resume layer editing (2 click)
> >
> >Perhaps worse than the number of clicks is the break in workflow as
> >you need to do the icon selection process. I think we can be more
> >smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
> >exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.
>
> My suggestion was to have the toggle editing button outside of the dropdown list. Therefore, in your example, there would only be one additional click with the dropdown list (choose line capture icon (2 click)). The capture line button stays selected when toggling editing on/off.
>
> But ok, in other situations where users change tools very often (e.g. alternate capture / vertex modifications), there will be more clicks. For those situations, a floating window could be nice.
>
> >I think we can be more
> >smart about combining tools into single icons where they are mutually
> >exclusive and win toolbar space back that way rather.
>
> This is a good solution for the capturing icons, but that saves only two positions. Or are there other icons that could be removed like this? And the number of editing tools may still grow in future.
>
> I had a look how other GIS handle the editing icons:
>
> Jump: floating window
> udig: dropdown list
> arc gis: dropdown list
>
> Regards,
> Marco
>
> > --
> > Dr. Marco Hugentobler
> > Institute of Cartography
> > ETH Zurich
> > Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
> >
>
>
> --
> Tim Sutton
> QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
> Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
> openModeller Desktop Developer
> Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
> niche modelling tool
> Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
> Skype: timlinux
> Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net
>
>


--
Tim Sutton
QGIS Project Steering Committee Member - Release  Manager
Visit http://qgis.org for a great open source GIS
openModeller Desktop Developer
Visit http://openModeller.sf.net for a great open source ecological
niche modelling tool
Home Page: http://tim.linfiniti.com
Skype: timlinux
Irc: timlinux on #qgis at freenode.net

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Re: Digitising icons

Chris Barker
Hugentobler Marco wrote:
>> Lastly, I wondered if the snapping distance in options panel can be
>> specified as a float
>
> Right. The (detailed) snapping distances in the project properties can be double, but the standard tolerances in the options panel not. I'm plan to change that in the next time.

For that matter, when you're looking at snapping distance for selection
of a vertex, for example, the distance should really be in pixels, not
in whatever the coordinate system your data is in. Is this possible now?

-Chris


--
Christopher Barker, Ph.D.
Oceanographer

Emergency Response Division
NOAA/NOS/OR&R            (206) 526-6959   voice
7600 Sand Point Way NE   (206) 526-6329   fax
Seattle, WA  98115       (206) 526-6317   main reception

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Re: Digitising icons

Hugentobler  Marco
Hi Christoph,

I agree that it would be more convenient to have the snapping tolerance in
pixels.
One thing that I'm not sure about is if, in case of reprojected layers, the
pixel_distance / layer_distance ratio is constant over the whole map view and
in each direction. If it is not, then I think it will be problematic to
specify the tolerance in pixels.

Regards,
Marco  

Am Donnerstag 17 Januar 2008 22:54:20 schrieb Christopher Barker:

> Hugentobler Marco wrote:
> >> Lastly, I wondered if the snapping distance in options panel can be
> >> specified as a float
> >
> > Right. The (detailed) snapping distances in the project properties can be
> > double, but the standard tolerances in the options panel not. I'm plan to
> > change that in the next time.
>
> For that matter, when you're looking at snapping distance for selection
> of a vertex, for example, the distance should really be in pixels, not
> in whatever the coordinate system your data is in. Is this possible now?
>
> -Chris



--
Dr. Marco Hugentobler
Institute of Cartography
ETH Zurich
Technical Advisor QGIS Project Steering Committee
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