[Aptitude-devel] Bug#613794: aptitude: cursor position in textfields. Usability improvement.

Antonio Ospite ao2 at ao2.it
Thu Oct 1 22:07:03 UTC 2015

On Thu, 1 Oct 2015 20:42:02 +0100
"Manuel A. Fernandez Montecelo" <manuel.montezelo at gmail.com> wrote:

> Control: tags -1 + moreinfo
> Control: retitle -1 aptitude: consider setting cursor position at the end of text fields (e.g. search box)
> Hi Antonio,
> 2011-02-17 10:15 Antonio Ospite:
> >Package: aptitude
> >Version: 0.6.3-3.2
> >Severity: wishlist
> >
> >Hi,
> >
> >maybe we can improve the cursor position in textfields (search box, limit
> >display box): currently it is always at the _beginning_ of textfields, even
> >when there is text in them already.
> >
> >Here is how aptitude behaves now:
> > 1. Open the Search box (For example with the '/' key)
> > 2. Insert some text and press OK
> > 3. Open the Search box again, the cursor is shown at the _beginning_ of the
> >    previously inserted text.
> > 4. To replace the text the user can:
> >    a. Insert a new text directly, _replacing_ the current one altogether
> >    b. Use the right arrow key to put the cursor at the end of the text and
> >       use Backspace to delete it (Del/Canc does not seem to work).
> >
> >I observed myself doing 4b. most of the time (I should really say "always"),
> >and moving the cursor is kind of annoying.
> >
> >However, if it was decided that the cursor has to be shown at the _end_ of the
> >text box then 4a. would not be look right either, the user would expect to
> >_append_ new characters to the text when inserting something new.
> >
> >Bottomline, I propose to put the cursor at the _end_ of the text in textfields
> >and only allow to delete the text with backspace, in order to follow what IMHO
> >are the "expectations" of most of the users.
> >
> >If the current behavior depends on ncurses and not directly on aptitude, then
> >sorry for the noise.
> I was never very happy about this behaviour, but now that it's been like
> that for more than a decade, I am not sure if it's a good idea to change
> it, breaking the assumptions of users.
> Thus marking as +moreinfo to give it some consideration about what to
> do.
> Also, if you haven't discovered that yet, note that you can use keys
> "End" and shortcut "Control-e" (as in emacs, bash, etc) to go to the end
> of the line, or "Home" and "Control-a" to move to the beginning.
> "Control-u" removes the line from the beginning to the position of the
> cursor, and "Control-k" from the current position until the end of the
> line.  Possibly other shortcuts work as well.

Hi Manuel, thanks for getting back on this issue.

Ctrl-k is a good work-around for my use case and the current behavior,

I still think that the natural position of the cursor should be at the
end of the already inserted text, and I would like to hear the opinion
of others about it, but I will survive even without all that :)

Ciao ciao,

Antonio Ospite

A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
   See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Posting_style
Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?

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