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XView Conventions

The look and feel of the UNIX implementation of COGENT derives from XView, the underlying widget set in which it was developed. XView is a freely available widget set developed by Sun Microsystems and based on Sun's original SunView graphical toolkit. Although Sun is no longer supporting XView, it is still widely available, and is distributed with Solaris (the current Sun operating system) and XFree86 (an X11 windowing system often distributed with the Linux operating system). The source code of XView is available and can be compiled for other UNIX environments (though this is a major task).

Mouse Buttons

XView assumes that the mouse attached to the machine being used has three buttons. The buttons are sometimes labelled, from left to right, ``select'', ``adjust'' and ``menu''. The intuitive meaning of these labels is adhered to by COGENT: that the left button is used for selecting objects, the middle button for adjusting objects, and the right for popping up menus. I your machine only has a two-buttoned mouse, and X know this, then the effect of pressing the middle button can be obtained by pressing both buttons simultaneously.

Notational Conventions

Three dots following the name of a panel button indicates that pressing the button will pop up a window. A small triangle following the name of a panel button indicates that it is a menu button. Clicking the right mouse button (i.e., the menu button) over such a button will result in a menu being popped up. If the triangle points down, then the menu will appear below the menu button. If the triangle points to the right, the menu will appear to the right of the menu button. When the user selects an item from the menu, the menu will normally automatically disappear.

Push pins

Many pop-up menus have an image of a push-pin in their top left corner. These pins allow pop-up menus to be pinned up, so that they don't disappear when an item from them is selected. Once a menu with a push-pin has been popped up (by pressing the right mouse button over a menu button), it may be pinned in place by pressing the left mouse button over the push-pin. A pinned menu can be moved anywhere on the screen by left clicking on the label of the menu and dragging it. Left clicking on the push-pin itself will cause the menu to disappear.

Menu Defaults

Each menu has a default item which is activated when the left mouse button is clicked over the menu button. The default item is usually the first menu item, but this can be changed by popping up the menu, pressing the left button over the desired new default, and then pressing the control key before releasing the left mouse button.


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