Re: Generic term for menu/toolbar/status-bar items

Subject: Re: Generic term for menu/toolbar/status-bar items
From: TechComm Dood <techcommdood -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 10 Dec 2004 11:11:33 -0500

> The basic question is: What is a generic term for items that appear in a
> menu, toolbar, or status bar (including separators)?

The Microsoft Manual of Style for Technical Publications covers this
nicely, as does the documentation for the Windows Development Platform

> The issue is what to call the abstract class that all these things inherit
> from. Neither I nor our UI designer could come up with a generic term that
> covers all of them. Microsoft's "official" UI guide has a section on "Menus,
> Controls, and Toolbars" --- in other words, they don't have a generic term,
> either.

That's because they are different. ;-)

> For now, we've settled on a solution that I'm not quite happy with, because
> it mixes levels a bit. The menus, toolbars, and status bars themselves are
> represented by classes called MenuManager, ToolbarManager and
> StatusLineManager. Each of these contains a list of items (Actions,
> Controls, and Separators). The parent class for these "managers" is called
> ActionManager.
> Consequently, we're calling the parent class for the items
> "ActionManagerItem", to indicate that it represents "things that an
> ActionManager manages". I don't like this solution because it uses the name
> of a specific class ("Action") in the name of a class that is more general.

I don't see anything really wrong with this.

> It's possible that this naming problem indicates a deeper flaw in the logic
> of the architecture. It's unlikely that I could convince the developer to
> change the architecture, but if someone has an argument, I'm interested in
> hearing it.

The logic of the architecture might be an issue, but it has nothing to
do with the class names used. Names and architecture are different
issues and need to be looked at individually for flaws and then
together for overall logical representation.



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Generic term for menu/toolbar/status-bar items: From: Janet Swisher

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