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Re: Feedback on Cut, Copy, and Paste in Siag

---Scott Wedel <swedel@Tymnet.COM> wrote:
> J. J. writes:
>    IMHO, it would be smoother though simply to have the filling done
>    directly by the pasting operation.
> There are two philosophies for dealing with stuff like this.  One is
> to provide a means to do whatever desired in one step which has the
> drawback of leading to a huge number of commands and hence users end
> up learning a limited subset that works for them.  The other is to
> provide a robust set of limited simple functions which can be combined
> to do everything which has the drawback of requiring more steps and
> users might not be able to figure out the needed sequence of commands
> to do something.
> The programmer almost always prefers the second since it keeps the
> code simple, easy to modify and improve.  Marketing generally prefers
> zillions of commands since then they can demo doing anything in one
> step.

I'm not sure that this applies to Cut, Copy, and Paste. They're fairly
basic operations.

> Probably, the best compromise is the ability for user to define
> which are a combination of commands.  So then each user can define the
> a set of specialized commands which works for them without forcing
> programmer to maintain a huge command set.

I kind of disagree on this point. There is nothing wrong with being
able to create new commands out of other commands, but this is more
something for a power user. The best compromise is to only have as
many commands as the user will actually need, plus a few shortcuts for
the most common operations, and a means for the power user to
customize the functionality. Siag seems to have done this just fine.
(I suppose that if one were to take this to its logical conclusion,
either cut/copy/paste or block-fill/copy-fill would have to go,
although practically speaking, I think Siag can handle the 'bloat':-)) 

The main reason that I gave the feedback that I did, namely

>    IMHO, it would be smoother though simply to have the filling done
>    directly by the pasting operation.

is because Cut, Copy, and Paste work that way in most commercial
spreadsheets. I'm not saying that Siag should be a carbon copy of
other spreadsheets--that would be pointless--but if you guys are going
to be implementing a typical convention of spreadsheets, one might as
well implement it all the way.

--J. J.
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