[Sugar-devel] [DESIGN] Show file size in Journal

Eben Eliason eben.eliason at gmail.com
Thu Apr 8 09:29:03 EDT 2010

On Thu, Apr 8, 2010 at 8:35 AM, Bert Freudenberg <bert at freudenbergs.de> wrote:
> On 08.04.2010, at 13:47, Eben Eliason wrote:
>> On Thu, Apr 8, 2010 at 7:18 AM, Sascha Silbe
>> <sascha-ml-ui-sugar-devel at silbe.org> wrote:
>>> On Wed, Apr 07, 2010 at 08:43:29PM -0300, Kenny Meyer wrote:
>>>> Bernie and I have been discussing about showing the file size in Journal
>>>> view
>>>> of Sugar 0.84.x, [...]
>>> As already mentioned on the ticket, Sugar 0.86+ does that (in the details
>>> view). The commits are 85b833 [1] and 6c3fd034 [2]. A quick look suggest
>>> they should be easy enough to backport.
>> Yeah, that's certainly one place it makes sense to show it; the
>> palette for Journal objects also makes sense. I like the idea of
>> exposing it as blocks, and agree with Bert that its essential that
>> those blocks be linear. With that approach, maybe the details view is
>> the only place that there is room to illustrate size that way.
> In the details view you only see a single entry, I'd expect the exact size shown numerically there. The graphical form is much more useful for visually comparing multiple entries.
>> One approach to showing size might be to "pretend" that we're in base
>> 9, so that one "big block" is 1MB, and 9 small blocks stack together
>> in a 3x3 grid to form a big block. I'm not sure granularity needs to
>> be more precise than that (though we could also show a precise value
>> as a number, too).
> Just to be pedantic: that would still be linear, not base-9 logarithmic ;)


> Otherwise the idea is sound, at least for entries up to a few MB. But what about larger ones? Given that Sugar runs on netbooks that frequently have a 160 GB disk, there should be some theory about dealing with large files IMHO.

Well, for arguments sake, we could assume that 1 unit (about 114
bytes) is 5px square. So 1MB (9 units) would be, say, 5*3 + 2 (for
spacing) = 17px square, and therefore up to 9MB is representable
within 17*3 + 4 (again, for spacing) = 55px square. That's exactly the
maximum area of an icon within one grid cell. Maybe that's too small,
but maybe not.

The real problem is that "linear" (which we both want) is
fundamentally non-scalable in a fixed screen size. Without a
logarithmic scale for size, we'd need to have a zooming factor to
continue to fit more blocks into fewer pixels. Perhaps we could drop
down to 3px squares for the smallest unit after some critical point.
Or, we could try using colors/values to convey the difference in block
sizes. Unfortunately, it's a bit harder to educate that 9 blue blocks
equals one red block than that 9 small blocks equals one large block.


> - Bert -
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