A blog about someones first time with a Linux desktop which mentions Pidgin

Felipe Contreras felipe.contreras at gmail.com
Tue Apr 29 10:15:21 EDT 2008

2008/4/29 Ethan Blanton <elb at pidgin.im>:
> Felipe Contreras spake unto us the following wisdom:
> > 2008/4/29 Phil Hannent <phil at hannent.co.uk>:
> > >  This blog entry is about a guy that got his girlfriend to try out ubuntu
>  > > 8.04 from a fresh install.  He gave her a set list of tasks to complete and
>  > > task eleven was to logon to MSN.  She used Pidgin but seemed to have a
>  > > little trouble with the add account screen (expecting add to create a new
>  > > account):
>  Some of the points in this post are things we have discussed several
>  times; for example, the text prompt in the buddy list and the open add
>  account dialog on startup with no configuration came from such
>  discussions.  We aren't sure how to "fix" some of the problems, though
>  -- for example, the confusion about multiple protocols in the add
>  account dialog.  A multiprotocol messenger just has multiple
>  protocols, and there's not a lot we can do about it.  We might be able
>  to make it "friendlier" (quotes intentional) by changing to a
>  wizard-style addition, but only at the expense of annoying a large
>  portion of our userbase (including most of the developers) who
>  *expect* Pidgin to me multiprotocol.  This part is tough.

Why does everything needs to have a compromise? Specially when you are
_adding_ something.

The old behavior would still be there: Ctrl+A, or Accounts in the menu.

>  > Right:
>  >
>  >  * The local alias field is completely confusing
>  It does seem to confuse some people, and not just on account addition.
>  (Some people set an alias and then are later upset that things like
>  nick changes on IRC are not reflected in the local UI.)  However, it's
>  also a useful and very Pidgin-esque feature; do you have any
>  suggestions for how to make it less confusing?

For starters move it away from the "Login options", which by the way
are not really options but actually properties of the account itself.

The account's "Local Alias" has been used as the user's private alias.
Create a field for the user's private alias and soon the usefulness of
an account's alias is diminished if not gone.

>  >  * The screen name field should be renamed to something
>  > understandable; like username
>  Maybe.  "Screen name" is very familiar to a huge number of users, as
>  well, because it's what AIM uses.  This assertion is another
>  protocol-centric assumption.
>  I'm inclined to agree that username is better on the whole, but
>  there's not just one side to this issue.

The name of Internet users surpasses by far the amount of AIM users,
and there username is the de facto standard.

Perhaps "screen name" is a remnant of the old gAIM. Still, nothing
that makes username not viable.

Even non-Internet users can infer what username stands for.

>  > I also don't understand why clicking on the X button moves Pidgin to
>  > the notification area. It should "close" Pidgin.
>  I completely agree here, as well.  Clicking on the X button moves
>  Pidgin to the notification area _because users asked for it_.  Maybe
>  this should be remembered the next time a user asserts that not
>  implementing their favorite behavior constitutes dictatorial refusal
>  to listen on the part of the developers.  ;-)  At the very least, this
>  behavior should not be default; I'm surprised that it is.

Probably because there is no "minimize to the tray area" button, nor

In anyway, I can't believe users really asked for it and developers
even though were strongly opposed to the idea changed the default
behavior out of the kindness of their heart. There is a difference
between empathic listening and user-stop-bitching strategies.

Best regards.

Felipe Contreras

More information about the Devel mailing list