Category Archives: overview

Away

I’m away on business until the middle of next week, so posting here will be scarce.

Extra buttons

Listen to this. Sometimes, as in GNOME bug 562650, people ask for extra buttons on the titlebar to go along with the standard set.  On the face of it, if you may bind a keystroke to some action, there is no reason why you should not be allowed to add it to the titlebar.  The […]

Window matching

Window matching is the process of identifying a new window as one we’ve seen before.  Of course every new window is new, and so we’ve never seen it before, but there’s an intuitive understanding that if you open a document in OpenOffice and then come back to it a week later that the window is […]

Annotations

Many people, from various programming communities, have come to the conclusion that if functions are first-class objects they should be allowed properties. For example, if a function in a test suite is checking for regression of the fix to a particular ticket, it could have a property for the ticket number. Then other parts of […]

Constraints

When a window changes position or size, there are rules of thumb about how it should happen.  The trouble is that sometimes in real life these rules of thumb are contradictory, and we need a way to decide between them.  This all used to be done in an ad-hoc way, but in 2005 Elijah swooped […]

The overview series: Drag and drop. You complain, we explain.

If there are two overlapping windows on the screen, people would like to be able to pick up an object from the lower window and drag it to the upper without bringing the lower window to the front, because if that happens the lower window will obscure the upper, and you won’t have anywhere to […]

Understanding Metacity themes

This is an article about how to theme Metacity. It is a work in progress, and I have had to dig deeply to find some answers; I may well have made mistakes and I welcome corrections and suggestions. GNOME lets you theme a bunch of different things, but we’re only talking about window border themes […]

Start reading here

This is not the Metacity home page. There is no Metacity home page. This is for the same reason there is no flashy logo: Metacity strives to be quiet, small, stable, get on with its job, and stay out of your attention. But this is a place where you can find out about Metacity. The […]

How Metacity creates an alt-Tab list

I’ve been asked to explain how to add new items to the list of programs which appears when you use alt-Tab to switch between programs in Metacity. This is a bit of a simplification, but it goes like this: When the user is switching between applications using alt-Tab, Metacity has what’s called a “keyboard grab” […]