Idea: Pin Commands into the User Interface


#1

Continuing the discussion from TaskPaper 3.6 Preview (282):

This is coming from the reminders UI discussion. There the problem is:

  1. Added new UI from quickly moving items between TaskPaper and Reminders.app
  2. First version of UI works, but it’s a whole separate UI.
  3. Becomes a lot cleaner if implement as standard Palette UI.
  4. Problem is that with standard palette UI can’t support drag and drop of TaskPaper items to send them to Reminders.

One idea is to create a dedicated icon in TaskPaper that will serve as a drop target for sending items to Reminders app. This nicely solves the problem, but adds it’s own problems. In particular not everyone wants to work with Reminders.app, and dedicating UI for that somewhat fringe feature doesn’t seem right.

So new idea. There are lots of TaskPaper commands that would be nice to include in the UI for some use cases. How about build some sort of standard way to pin commands that you want visually shown in the UI? This would enable you to include any command that shows in the Palette > Commands list to show in the UI where you can easily click it. Or if it operations on items (such as a Send to Reminders command would) then you can drag and drop items onto it to perform the command.

I don’t think this idea will make it into version 3.6. But maybe 3.7. I think it would make sense to dedicate a release to surfacing commands in the UI (and also assigning keyboard shortcuts).


#2

I’m not sure I get it all right, but you mean to add buttons somewhere on the window that are pinned commands ? Or you mean to have access to commands directly from the menubar ?

I think I would prefer the later option (having access to the commands from the menubar). This way we could add our own shortcuts with the OS preference pane. Myself, I was thinking that you could populate a menu to list all the commands (Maybe: “Palette” > “Commands” > “Show or Search Command Palette” … and under a list of all the commands)

But a way to have access to favorite one is great as well. And I’m sure you have a great idea on how to implement your idea with the UI, I just don’t get if you want to add the favorite commands to the menubar or as buttons on the sidebar or to get back a toolbar…

As for sending item to Reminder, wouldn’t it work to make the Command send the selected items or the item that the cursor is currently on instead of the drag and drop action ?


#3

As a workaround this drop zone could be enabled/disabled with a checkbox in the Preferences panel.

But this is awesome! As this is a broader solution, it brings benefits even for those that don’t want to use Reminders. Actually, this would be for the mousers similar to what the palletes are for the keyboarders, as it brings a sense of a dynamic UI.

This toolbar could be setup with a configuration file like tags.taskpaper and searches.taskpaper. Going further into this idea, I have some suggestion described below.

toolbar.taskpaper:

This is a configuration outline. Use it to store commands that you want to show in the toolbar for all TaskPaper documents. 
  Use projects to group commands. The groups will be separated by empty spaces in the toolbar.
  Use the tag @label to specify the label you want the command to present.
  Use the tag @icon to specify a Font Awesome icon to be associated to the command.

Group 1 - General:
  - Outline Editor: Archive Done @label(Archive) @icon(archive)

Group 2 - Focus:
  - Outline Editor: Focus In @label(Focus In) @icon(indent)
  - Outline Editor: Focus Out @label(Focus Out) @icon(outdent)

Group 3 - Reminders:
  - Outline Editor: Import from Reminders @label(Import from Reminders) @icon(calendar)
  - Outline Editor: Copy to Reminders @label(Copy to Reminders) @icon(calendar-plus-o)

Group 4 - Scripts:
  - User Script: Clear Archive @label(@Clear Archive) @icon(trash-o)

#4

this sounds interesting.


#5

Interesting idea - probably easiest to asses by an early implementation!


#6

Although Taskpaper’s keyboard-focused philosophy is one of the things I appreciate most about the app, I really like the idea of adding a customizable, Mac-standard toolbar option. It would be particularly helpful for newer users, since it takes some time to have the level of familiarity with the app where the available tools and their keyboard shortcuts are imprinted into one’s memory.

Along similar lines, newer users might appreciate the ability to make the Palette window always visible on the screen.