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[Poll] Retera Model Studio GUI Question

Discussion in 'Warcraft Editing Tools' started by Retera, Aug 9, 2020.

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How do you prefer to choose the file type when saving a file?

  1. I prefer to type the extension to determine the format the file will save in

    3 vote(s)
    17.6%
  2. I prefer to choose the format from a dropdown list, discarding any file extension that I type

    14 vote(s)
    82.4%
  1. Retera

    Retera

    Tool Reviewer

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    Hi! I am Retera, author of Retera Model Studio tool. I was doing some updates and I thought of a problem in my program that is small, but it affects anyone who uses it. Furthermore, my tool never "calls home" like some modern software. So I have no data metrics about who is using it and what they want. I only make the features I want.

    So I reached a feature that is probably better to be informed by the data -- by asking users -- rather than by just letting myself decide what I want. Here's the problem:

    For any avid users of Magos over the years, everyone knows that to save a model as ".mdx" the user must type ".mdx" in the save dialog to tell the program which format to save the model under. Likewise, for ".mdl", the user must tell Magos to save this format by explicitly typing the three letters, ".mdl" when saving.

    In my program, when it was first created, I did not use Magos much and did not realize how much of a user habit this was to expect the program output to be based on the three letters typed by the user. So, as a result, in my program if a user types ".mdl" in the save popup, the program will forcibly swap the extension back to ".mdx" and then save the model in the MDX format. It does this until a dropdown at the bottom of the file save dialog is changed to a separate "MDL" dropdown option, and then it will forcibly swap extension to "mdl" when saving.

    Now, that has been fine for a few years -- users of the program just had to learn to use the dropdown on my tool instead of typing in an extension.

    But, because it appears Magos is not going to come back and is not going to add Reforged support to his tool anytime soon, I'm working on updating my program to replace more of the features, and I was just working with the texture editing stuff and was reminded that right now almost everything in my program that exports a texture uses the Magos style of file choosing when saving to a texture file. Users have to type ".bmp" if they want a BMP, or ".png" if they want a PNG, rather than selecting via the dropdown. So, I was thinking I could just change the texture exporter to match the rest of my tool, but then it occurred to me that maybe I should change the main save behavior to work like Magos for choosing what file type to save instead.

    So that brings me to this poll: how do you prefer to choose the file type when saving a file?
     
  2. Zwiebelchen

    Zwiebelchen

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    I prefer typing it out. But i wouldnt mind either way.
     
  3. Drake53

    Drake53

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    What would happen in the first option (typing in manually) if you don't give the filename an extension?
    Also, a third option could be to use radiobuttons instead of a dropdown.
     
  4. ThompZon

    ThompZon

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    I prefer to type it out, but a dropdown can help to show the available options that a program can handle if you are unfamiliar with it.
     
  5. Macadamia

    Macadamia

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    I voted for a dropdown.

    This said, I am with @Drake53 on this one, the easiest would definitely be a set of radio buttons that would automatically add the proper extension IF it is not already there (unlike some applications that wouldn't mind things like .mdx.mdx - really annoying).

    As for the typed extension to define it (like in Magos for example), this is really horrible design and unpractical.
    There are many issues that this can bring forward, including the cases where the user does not type an extension, but also all the cases where the user makes a typo, types an extension that is not supported...

    I am sorry for the typed extension supporters, but that's plain outdated design, and requires typing the extension when a simple click could have done the job with a radio button.

    The idea of a single click is also what drives me to support radio button over the drop down.

    Just my two cents :)
     
  6. ThompZon

    ThompZon

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    That's the problem right there. I prefer less clicking, more action.
    If I have to write something, and I know what I want. It'll be faster to continue to write than to move the hand to the mouse and click, possibly more than once (once to open the dropdown, and once to select whatever).

    But I really, really like having that dropdown there if I'm unsure of supported formats though.
     
  7. Drake53

    Drake53

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    Tbh this problem could easily be solved by supporting both methods.
    Take winrar for example, when I enter a supported file format, it automatically selects the corresponding radiobutton, and when I click a radiobutton, it automatically changes the filename's extension.
     
  8. Macadamia

    Macadamia

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    Yes Drake has it right there, best of both options, nobody would be disappointed !
     
  9. Kyrbi0

    Kyrbi0

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    I agree with Drake as well; both/automatically is almost certainly superior to either option.

    However of the two I voted for "drop-down". The Magos way seems pretty bad (& always trips me up).
     
  10. Power

    Power

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    Good to hear that you're updating this GODLIKE program, thanks Retera for making our lifes easier :)
     
  11. FeelsGoodMan

    FeelsGoodMan

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    Pls also consider adding support for .tga textures ;)
     
  12. deepstrasz

    deepstrasz

    Map Reviewer

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    Yes please since we also have .dds now.