[GRASS-dev] Feedback from a FOSSGIS course

Michael Barton michael.barton at asu.edu
Wed May 23 12:20:20 EDT 2007

This is a good discussion.

On 5/23/07 1:23 AM, "Glynn Clements" <glynn at gclements.plus.com> wrote:

>> I too find it ugly and a pain to have 4-6 windows cluttering the
>> desktop. IIUC in the new wx GUI the output window is a tab on the GIS
>> Manager window, and if the command prompt window is minimized, then
>> there is usually just the display and control panel to deal with.
> One option would be to use wxAUI, which allows the user to move panes
> around within a window, or detach them into separate top-level
> windows.
> The wxPython demo includes two AUI demos (AUI_DockingWindowMgr and

We're using wxAUI in wxgrass currently. At the moment, it permits tear off
toolbars from a display window (which of course makes *more* frames on the
screen). I was thinking that it might be a good way to create a cartography
system (drop and resize various displays inside a main display), but haven't
got beyond that preliminary concept stage.

>>> 7. GRASS startup
>>> First time use of GRASS is confusing, as we need to a location to
>>> start with. I suggest to copy the spearfish location and use it as a
>>> base. It is better if GRASS provides a demo location by defult, even
>>> without any data.
>> Package download size. Probably the startup text could be more helpful
>> explaining where to get data and what to do with it.
> I disagree with the "default location" idea; there is no sensible
> default. You cannot use GRASS without having read at least an
> introduction, and trying to trick the user into believing otherwise
> wouldn't be doing anyone any favours.
> A more reasonable solution would be to have a prominent HELP button on
> the startup screen which takes the user to an introduction describing
> database, location, mapset, projection, region. This could be
> especially prominent (e.g. large, flashing, bold, red text) if $GISRC
> doesn't exist or no existing locations are found.

This is a nice idea. We also need an error trap for cases where someone has
deleted or renamed a location that was the last one used.


Michael Barton, Professor of Anthropology
School of Human Evolution & Social Change
Center for Social Dynamics & Complexity
Arizona State University

phone: 480-965-6213
fax: 480-965-7671
www: http://www.public.asu.edu/~cmbarton

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