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The Keyhole Problem (2002) [pdf] (aristeia.com)
17 points by innot 5 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 9 comments

I'm not completely sold on the argument that software should aways fill the user's screen. Many websites, for example, don't use the full width of the screen for text, and I think I personally like it that way because I don't have to sweep the entire screen to read. Screens are landscape, rather than portrait like books, so it can be annoying to read overly wide lines of text.

I think that the software should fill the window, not the entire screen unless the user has used the full screen mode or if it is not on the window system (e.g. for full screen DOS software).

If it is a window system but the software may use a fixed screen size, then whether it is window or full screen depend what resolution is set, and may have a user option to set integer zoom. However, this is usually for a computer game, and if you can, it is best to allow the user specified size.

I don't like the websites to don't use the full width of the screen for text; the user can resize the window to put the width that they want instead. If a website does not use the full width, I will use the Stylish extension to override it.

However, many program doesn't need GUI, it can be command-line interface, and does not need to deal with screen space at all (and you can use for example "| less" if it doesn't fit on the screen and want to scroll through it).

I also think that a maximum password length of four digits is way too short, although maybe that can be reasonable as the minimum length.

Does a PDF complaining about fixed-width content qualify as irony?

Maybe. Perhaps it would have been better as a HTML document or plain text document, although perhaps they did PDF because they want to print it out on the paper (although HTML documents can also be printed out).

I got so fed up with the fixed size of the Outlook Rules dialog that I wrote a batch script to to resize it using cmdow[1]. (I have over 50 rules.)

[1] https://ritchielawrence.github.io/cmdow/

I got so fed up with Outlook that I surveyed the bigger half of the office population to find out the outbound server and switched to Thunderbird under a linux vm. Not sure whether it helped with the keyhole problem tho.

Thunderbird is by far the best MUA I've used. I use a Chromebook as my daily workstation and I cannot wait for it to support Linux applications so I can run Thunderbird rather than my current situation (a mix of web-mail and ALPINE).

I don't own a chromebook, but have you tried [0]? Looks like it allows to run linux programs fairly easily.

[0] https://github.com/dnschneid/crouton

It requires disabling a fair amount of the benefits of a Chromebook to enable. Yes, I have tried it. Also, the method it uses to display X11 applications is fairly terrible.

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