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Better way to edit Settings

Better way to edit Settings

Postby n00ge on Fri Jan 06, 2012 2:01 pm

I think one of the tougher concepts for new adopters of Sublime is the handling of the settings. I get the way that they work but it's definitely awkward for newbies. Something I thought of that would probably be simple to do is to change the manner in which you present the editing of the files. People really shouldn't be editing the "Default" setting files and it's not that obvious. I think if you changed the manner in which they opened to always show both the Default and the User files in a 2 column view it would make more sense. If possible, I'd even set the Default file to read only. This way they could refer to the Default file and edit the User file at the same time.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby craigpatik on Wed Jan 11, 2012 5:30 pm

Even better, IMO, would be to pre-populate the user file with the contents of the default file. That's usually how I begin -- I copy and paste everything, then edit individual items and remove the ones I don't need to change.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby ajpalkovic on Wed Jan 11, 2012 6:28 pm

+1

Every time I try and pitch someone on sublime, one thing they get hung up on is editing settings. It's so unnecessarily complicated.

You should have a gui settings editor. It should list all the settings at their default values (file and global settings) and it should let them edit them. Some settings you know all the valid values for so you should have checkboxes/dropdowns for that. Use the existing UI paradigms to your advantage :)

The editor should take care of saving the settings in the correct place. Early on, users don't care about the difference between file and global settings. They don't care about they difference between syntax specific settings and package settings and what not. They don't care to remember to put that trailing comma on the 3rd line of the json file that they forgot. Power users can always edit the files directly, but there should be a dead simple gui for people that are just getting started.

I'll even code it for you if you let me :)
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby n00ge on Sat Jan 14, 2012 3:13 pm

I'm actually in favor of the json settings files. I think it's great that Jon can roll out new features and throw in settings quickly without taking the time to plan out and build the interface. If there were a dynamic interface that could just be a key/value editor for the json file that might be better as long as there were a way to look at the default settings that you can work with and override.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby bfarber on Mon Jan 16, 2012 6:41 pm

I agree the way settings are handled is very techy and old school. It makes perfect sense for us programmer types, but the vast majority of users I'm sure get confused how this is all handled. Some sort of GUI that handles it would be ideal (regardless of how it's handled on the backend - end users don't generally care about that sort of thing).

Further, it would be lovely if we could edit color schemes using a simple GUI as well. Every editor I've used until Sublime has a way to accomplish this.

Crimson Editor has View -> Set Colors, which lets you change the interface and syntax highlighting colors.

'e' Text editor had a way to do this too (no longer have it installed so can't verify where)

phpDesigner has Tools -> Preferences -> Syntax Highlighter. You choose the syntax highlighter you wan't to customize and then pick your colors.

Image

I like the power that is available in Sublime for further customizations (alpha channel control, cascading hierarchy, etc.) if you want, but for basic color selections an interface would be useful.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby Rivanni on Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:54 am

I totally agree here. I hope that there soon will be a GUI like most other programs have.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby skube on Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:06 pm

Isn't the whole philosophy of ST2 based on the keyboard paradigm? Other than the tabs and Find/Replace there is very little GUI at all. I doubt there ever will be. (But I don't know anything really)
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby agibsonsw on Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:41 pm

skube wrote:Isn't the whole philosophy of ST2 based on the keyboard paradigm? Other than the tabs and Find/Replace there is very little GUI at all. I doubt there ever will be. (But I don't know anything really)


I very much agree ;). People are always initially impressed with ST, but then want to make more and more changes (to imitate their previous editor/IDE) :cry:. There are many plugins available, but I am in favour of leaving the default installation pretty much "as is", especially in terms of the UI. Andy.
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby evanmoran on Tue Apr 03, 2012 6:36 pm

I'd recommend hiding the global preferences under a sub menu and list the user preferences (only) at the top level. Currently it is overwhelming having so many preferences and it isn't clear which you should change. It would be better to have:

Sublime Preferences

User - Global Settings
User - File Settings
User - Key Bindings

Default Settings -> (these on a sub menu)
Default - Global Settings
Default - File Settings
Default - Key Bindings
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Re: Better way to edit Settings

Postby nicktheandroid on Sun Apr 22, 2012 4:09 pm

When I first checked out sublime text 2 awhile ago, and saw the settings file, I uninstalled it.. I was more of a noob and would rather have a UI with checkboxes and dropdowns than the settings file. I'm blown away that one guy is behind sublimetext, but I think a UI for the settings would go a LONG way for people new to sublimetext. Kind of like e-text editor.
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