Is the ribbon going to make an appearance?

I have heard rumours that the dreadful ribbon is going to be added to LibreOffice. This is a sad day if that’s the case. Many people use LibreOffice because it doesn’t have the ribbon and I feel many will look for something else if it’s put in place. Myself included, or I will just continue with the last version not to have it.

If you go ahead and install that dreadful screen hogger, will it be optional? Will it make it’s presence know in Linux? I’d hate to move from LibreOffice, but there is no way in the world I want to use something as unintuitive and slow as a ribbon menu.


(Editing partly with respect to the comments below:)
The most highly esteemed contributor ever to this forum was @oweng. Despite the fact that he retired about a year ago, he is still by far - and rightly - the one with the highest karma in this “meritocratic community”. We should probably not dismiss his statements. Maybe the answer he posted about three years ago concerning a question about the ribbon UI is still worth to read at least. It was one of the last contributions he updated (2016-03-29) before retiring, and it was upvoted 9 times. Imo it is even still valid. You may go to that answer using the link. There is just a couple of sentences I would like to emphasize from my point of view of an old teacher (The old question contained “Students are baffled”.) :

I am dismayed that students at a school, that presumably go there to learn, are so easily “baffled.” Either the teachers or the students are not fulfilling their role effectively. The world is a diverse place. It contains lots of different things. The road to disappointment is paved with expectations.

(Italic by oweng. I would tend to insert “undue” in front of “expectations”.)

(End edit)

(This is, as far as I can remember, my firts post for which I ask for upvoting.
For interseting comments I ask as well, of course, as implicitly always.)

A quiet submission in uneasy mood.

Might it be part of the current riding on the wave to decide “This but That as well.” or “Let’s make it optional.” “Go ‘Personal’.” In my opinion productive software shouldn’t go that way. Think alone of providing help. Will I have to hence fork when answering knowing of two or three ways and not knowing how many else there may be? (I already give alternatives sometimes.) Will I have to know about significantly different UI options to be able to help a beginner? There isn’t even documentation yet correctly regarding all the changes made to the standard UI within the last few years. “Where is ‘Window Freeze’ gone?” “Was naming ranges or expressions abolished?” “I can no longer find ‘Fill Right’.” Software for the real world must be teachable and supportable. Free software cannot get the average user to pay for support either directly or by “buying” a new version every other year.

If competitors go the way of “individualize everything” LibO might take advantage of its orignal strategy: “Let’s look the same and work the same way on every system.” We might better add: “And have users see the same surface while they are communicating about the usage.

Of course, MS is strong in marketing. They aren’t idiots, and they themselves will know best that “Ribbon Interface” is an extreme mischief with respect to the needs of conscious users. They didn’t invent it to make their software better but to fight competitors. A few pleasant feelings for the jabbers and not too much obvious trouble for teachers and deciders. Just enough for luring.

A suspicion of mine put into a thesis: A commercial software vendor to the general public, if already leading in a market, should never make his software better than absolutely neccessary to not lose market share. Competition insofar is not about quality but about ruling the expectations.

There’s always a price to pay for something.

And both options (either keeping status quo, i.e. go without new interface options, as well as the opposite - to introduce new options) has their price.

But those who pay are different. In first case, it’s the user who pays. Especially new inexperienced (to this software) user who has personal preferences brought from outside. We force them to learn our way, and not only the new concepts (that the software is built on, like styles etc.).

In second case, the users (both new and existing) are free to choose, and only supporters (mostly already experienced) have some extra load. I prefer second.

Another case.
A: Let’s get OOXML approved as an additional open standard.
B: One open document format standardised is preferrable.
C: Let the user decide.
Lupp: Those with the biggest market share in advance will steal the stake, even if they do not keep their promises concerning mutual support, persistence and whatever. In addition they will change something substantial as soon as competitors succeed with compatibility.
No chance to catch up. Must be better.

Arbitrary analogy isn’t a good argument. (Even aside from fact that it’s not universally accepted that two open document standards is a wrong thing.)

A good wish to be better isn’t supported by an adequate driving force, and without it, avoiding the catch-up doesn’t make any good for LO.

Very Interesting. Especially the last line. … It was that ribbon that I paid much money for in an Access update (2007 I think) and then came to hate so much that I abandoned the update in favor of the previous version, Access 2003, which I still use today. I remain sure that the ribbon was invented by amateurs, kids let loose with power and trying to masquerade as pros, but they had no idea what production looks like. Windows 10 is the same bs, writ large, and so I am here w/ Linux/LO.

In my opinion, some of the new options for the new GUI, there are 4 options if I remenber correctly are quite good looking and shinny. But you guys have a point, that trying to modify the interface to make it look prettier and shinier can be a waste of time, since the competitor (full of cash from the proprietary world) will make new changes and will ultimately make unfruitful all the LO efforts to look ‘prettier’. It’s like a loop that has no end, a cat and mouse kind of thing…

The solution is a more pragmatic approach: focousing on improving LO itself and make it functional. Perhaps, instead of spending so many resources on attempting to create a shinny Ribbon interface, the LO team shoud focous more on deciding which of the bugs that are sitting in bugzilla for years actually need fixing. The LO team should be focousing more on ‘simple and mundane tasks should be made simple’ and not on increasing the complexity of the code (which is already the size of the solar

This work cannot be unfruitful. Before the work started, we had no extensible framework. Now we have it. So extending it in arbitrary direction is easier than before the effort. And for us, it’s easy to keep all UI options, while for competitor, a change was “one and the only option available” which means a new learning curve and much disappointment from users.

system) and adding stuff to it, like table styles (in LO 5.3) for example. There are more important things to do.

And what is “so many resources”? A couple of developers? Who are interested in the work, and (you should remember - we are volunteer-based project!) possibly, if they were not allowed to work on this, they would leave the project. You seem to misunderstand how the things are done here.

you have a good point. But isn’t the Document Foundation a guiding light for LO? If they are, they should guide towards simplicity and functionality of use. This, in my opinion, should be their main priority.

You may like to get familiar with the goal of TDF, and its role. It is not there to restrict what may be done with the project.

“So many resources” could be the 250,000 euros they spent in 2015 on staff and freelancers, you can find that in their report.That is more (hopefully) than a couple of developers.

:smiley: So do you think that these money were spent to develop Muffin? wow…

The most resources to develop Muffin was from Google… as they payed the GSoC student to do the work over summer. Other resources were from volunteers to mentor the student and design the thing.

We are experimenting with new UI concepts (1) (2) to make it easier for user to work with the LO as they feel comfortable, but adding new UI options doesn’t mean the old one will be removed. Toolbar / Sidebar will still be available and we don’t plan to remove it.

BTW. you can choose other options already in LibreOffice 5.3, if you enable experimental features.

I know of a few topics out there that cause similar religious fear.

Do all LO users use Base? And if they don’t, do they fear of its presence that much so they would describe it “I hear rumors that the dreadful Base is going to be installed with LibreOffice! Is that true? I’m afraid many people would look for something else because of that, myself included”?

What I expect from a sensible user is a question like “I heard LO is going to have Ribbon. I don’t want to use ribbon, so will it be optional?” This doesn’t make the question, and answer, something polarized.

And the answer to “Will it be optional?” is yes.

To impute “religious fear” to critics and sceptics who well substantiate their point of view should be regarded bad style.
That myself and other critics also talk about some suspicions or a personal attitude you may regard as honest insofar as everyone of us knows he has to expect such accusations.
I personally don’t feel offended but I am stunned by the idea of imputing unobjective and short-sighted thinking to oweng.