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Custom push actions (gestures)

asked 2013-12-24 22:24:16 +0300

FireFly gravatar image

updated 2014-01-10 20:51:41 +0300

lk gravatar image

This is a bit of a complex one, so bear with me. The whole concept of the Sailfish OS sort-of puts pushes from screen edges as an OS-level way to control applications and move between screens. Although the defaults are pretty good and make sense, some users probably feel that they'd want to customise these actions in one way or another. So, what I propose is some kind of interface to remap these actions. Good values to use as defaults would probably be "move to screen X" (lock screen, home screen, notification screen, favourite ambiences screen), "move to last application (that is not currently visible)", "put phone to sleep", "launch application X".

Customisation would be separate for "built-in screen" and "application", each having one action for each direction (so, a total of 8 actions). The "move to screen X" options would act as "move to last visible view" if it's the current view already. "last application (not currently visible)" would be restricted to applications, and is useful to bind to an application push-action to quickly switch between two applications (say, paste a link in IM, chat some more, go back to browser, etc).

As an example, I've been complaining loudly about having to move my thumb all the way to the top of the screen (when holding the phone in one hand) in order to close an application. On the other hand, I haven't found too much use for 'notifications' yet (as I don't want facebook/twitter feeds in my phone, at least not yet). I'd probably prefer to remap "close application" to push-up, and perhaps I could move the notifications view to push-right as I'm rarely using that anyway.

One potential downside with this suggestion is that it makes Sailfish OS less "uniform" in that you can't just pick up any Sailfish device and expect it to have the same actions. Of course, most people probably won't remap the defaults (not too much, anyway), and the current behaviour would remain the default so it wouldn't impact the "average user" I think. I just like being able to customise my phone to have just the shortcuts I want it to.

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I really like the original swipes, but it's best to give options for people who want them.

parasemic ( 2013-12-24 22:49:17 +0300 )edit

Agreed. I'm having real problems with one-handed use, which is the vast majority of how I use the phone. I'm especially having problems with top-down swiping with the thumb which interfears with pull-down menus as well.

msknight ( 2013-12-27 08:02:45 +0300 )edit

I was just about to write what you already have written :) How about if we break some different ideas on this into answers and start voting?

simo ( 2013-12-30 12:43:57 +0300 )edit

I like this idea very much and was thinking just the same. Ease of use could be improved, if user could arrange gestures by his/her taste and by which hand Jolla is operated.

Jolla095 ( 2014-06-03 23:05:07 +0300 )edit

1 Answer

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answered 2013-12-30 15:40:36 +0300

simo gravatar image

I'd like to see the gesture customization working like this:

A new option "Customize" would be added above "System settings" to the Settings. Tapping that opens:

  • Gestures

  • (Possible other customization option, not handled within this question)

Selecting "Gestures" opens a list including all gestures...

  • tap / double tap / triple tap / short hold / long hold / (tap+hold)

  • one finger + multi finger swipes within screen, 4 directions

  • one finger swipes from outside the screen, 4 directions

  • custom drawn gesture (like letter-look a likes). If selected, a drawing box opens. Before saving, the drawing is compared to existing gestures to avoid any mixups. Too close look-a-likes would be shown with options "redraw" or "cancel"

... and their current status, marked as:

  • Red circle: Unable to edit / remove (gesture is system reserved, and offers the only access to a certain place or event)

  • Orange circle: Can be removed or edited, but is a reserved, default gesture

  • Green circle: Already saved custom gesture in several / all screens use

  • Clear circle with a green square inside: Already saved custom gesture in a single screen use

  • Clear circle with a small green dot inside: Already saved custom gesture, but in only local object use

  • Clear circle (or unmarked): Free gesture, not attached to any screen/object yet

When the desired gesture is tapped, selection "On which screen(s) the gesture launches an event?"

  • A view of all existing screens opens to select from. On reserved gestures, existing selections would be active

  • A small "select all" icon to the top corner. Prompt user: "Attach this gesture to work on all screens?"

  • Removing all selected screen would prompt the user "Remove the gesture? ok/cancel" (Another way to remove would be a HOLD on the previous list instead of tapping)

Next: Select where on the screen the gesture launches an event

  • on whole screen

  • only on body / header / footer

  • only on top of an object (selectable only if the gesture is attached to only one screen)

(Next, and only if "only on top of an object" is selected)

  • On which object (visit the screen to select). Like for example on top of clock / battery on the lock screen. All Selectable object would be highlighted. After the object is selected, return to the customization.

Next: Select Action, followed by Select Object. All actions and objects:

  • Go to...: Show list of existing screens to select from. Only one can be selected.

  • Show...: Notifications / Quick settings bar / Time / Battery status / next events / next ToDo's / current date+time / battery info ( / Latest apps / latest calls / latest messages / latest music / latest pictures )

  • View... Zoom+ / zoom- / font size +...- / icon size +...- / objects size +...- / transparency +...- (On these event, a swipe gesture with opposite direction would be saved (if free). Popup user for that, or prompt user to select the opposite gesture (visit to the gesture list)

  • Switch setting(s): List of ON/OFF settings. Several could be selected with turn ON / turn OFF option

  • Adjust setting +...- : List of adjustable settings, lke brigtness, vloume. (Selectable only for swipe gestures)

  • Open setting: List of other settings

  • Open App(s): List of all applications (or a visit to the launcher view from where to select)

  • Close App(s): All running / All but latest / All Android apps / All Sailfish apps / All not prevented (preventing certain apps from closing would be another customization, not hadled within this question)

  • ... / ... (If the ideas in this post seems good but you'd like to add one, please comment)

Next: End Action (selectable only for swipe gestures on show/view events.)

  • Save the view (leave as it is, save the zoom level/icon size/font size/brigtness level etc...)

  • Undo & return (undo any changes, hide the showed items and show the screen as it was before the gesture)

**note: On +- events, two custom gestures are needed. In swipe gestures, backward gesture is automatically saved to do the opposite (popup user for that). In tapping gestures, user needs to save another one (popup about that too)

And finally:

  • Prompt user to save the custom gesture or to preview it (try it)

  • When saved, update the new status to the gesture list and return user to the list. huh...

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Hmm, while I'm not opposing further customisation options, I think I put an extra weight to the edge push gestures personally since they are OS-wide and not being able to easily reach some edges is a realistic problem. Oh, and I'm afraid I find your gesture indicators a tad complex... maybe keeping it simpler is a better idea.

FireFly ( 2013-12-30 20:52:49 +0300 )edit

Thanks for your comment @FireFly , it might be a good idea. How about you copy, edit and send another answer more simplified for people to vote?

simo ( 2014-01-01 21:57:10 +0300 )edit
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Asked: 2013-12-24 22:24:16 +0300

Seen: 715 times

Last updated: Dec 30 '13