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Note on keyboard shortcuts

 
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IrlSmith



Joined: 14 Oct 2008
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:31 am    Post subject: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

The help file correctly points out that one can add shortcuts for any menu item via the Keyboard and Mouse System Preferences pane. It would be helpful to point out that an item such as
Amplify...
contains an "ellipsis", not three periods, and that the ellipsis is available as option-semicolon. This will be obvious to a subset of your users but not to all.
Yours,
Irl
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Ron Fleckner



Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 41
Location: Melbourne Australia

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 1:44 am    Post subject: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

On 25/01/2009, at 12:31 PM, IrlSmith wrote:

Quote:
The help file correctly points out that one can add shortcuts for
any menu item via the Keyboard and Mouse System Preferences pane. It
would be helpful to point out that an item such as
Amplify...
contains an "ellipsis", not three periods, and that the ellipsis is
available as option-semicolon. This will be obvious to a subset of
your users but not to all.
Yours,
Irl

Hello Irl,

in fact the three dots ARE three periods, or full stops. An ellipsis
is not used in menus, I think because it looks too small. Here's an
ellipsis: …, and here's the three full stops: ...

Ron
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IrlSmith



Joined: 14 Oct 2008
Posts: 18

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:30 am    Post subject: Red faced Reply with quote

Ron --
You're right. I got tricked by (a) vaguely remembering from long ago (or mis-remembering) that ellipses were used in menus, and (b) typing an ellipsis into the Keyboard and Mouse pref pane and obtaining the desired Amadeus menu modification. (I wanted cmd-option-A to be Amplify... .)
However, after some experimentation, I discover that after typing an ellipsis (option-semicolon) into the pane, then closing the pane, then re-opening it, the ellipsis has gotten automagically changed into three periods.
So ... (or …) I withdraw my suggestion. Thanks for the clarification!
(in the Well Duhh category, it might be worth noting that if one wants a keyboard shortcut for a menu item having said three periods, one must include the three periods in the Keyboard and Mouse entry.)
Irl
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Ron Fleckner



Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 41
Location: Melbourne Australia

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:10 am    Post subject: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

On 25/01/2009, at 1:30 PM, IrlSmith wrote:

Quote:
Ron --
You're right. I got tricked by (a) vaguely remembering from long
ago (or mis-remembering) that ellipses were used in menus, and (b)
typing an ellipsis into the Keyboard and Mouse pref pane and
obtaining the desired Amadeus menu modification. (I wanted cmd-
option-A to be Amplify... .)
However, after some experimentation, I discover that after typing
an ellipsis (option-semicolon) into the pane, then closing the pane,
then re-opening it, the ellipsis has gotten automagically changed
into three periods.
So ... (or
) I withdraw my suggestion. Thanks for the clarification!
(in the Well Duhh category, it might be worth noting that if one
wants a keyboard shortcut for a menu item having said three periods,
one must include the three periods in the Keyboard and Mouse entry.)
Irl


That's very interesting that the ellipsis you typed gets changed to
three dots. Maybe Apple anticipated that people such as yourself will
"do the right thing" and use a proper ellipsis.

Ron
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Martin Hairer
Site Admin


Joined: 08 Nov 2006
Posts: 1615

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 3:49 am    Post subject: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

Quote:
I got tricked by (a) vaguely remembering from long ago (or mis-
remembering) that ellipses were used in menus

As far as I remember, Apple used ellipses in MacOS 9 and switched to
three periods in Mac OS X. Regards,

Martin

HairerSoft
http://www.hairersoft.com/


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Lou Kash



Joined: 16 Jul 2008
Posts: 87

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been editing keyboard shortcuts for years now (albeit not through the Keyboard preference pane which was always buggy on some localised versions of Mac OS X, but by directly editing each plist which also allows more flexibility by manually entering unusual shortcuts which the pref pane would otherwise reject) and only recently I found out that the system doesn't care anymore about three periods or ellipsis and translates each on the fly. I'm quite sure that at least in Panther it wasn't the case yet. Not sure about Tiger, but being used it, I always entered an ellipses because I knew that most apps are using them. So possibly Tiger already did the on-the-fly translation as well.

As for the use of elipsis vs. three periods in Apple's own apps, it differs, as always...
In many cases you can quite easily find for yourself how each app behaves by opening its package and navigate to Content/Resources/xyz.lproj/Localizable.strings (where "xyz" is the language bundle you want to inspect).
For instance, Preview.app has a table in the English Localizable.strings which "translates" from a three-periods string to the same string with ellipsis...

Not all apps store the menu strings in this file, however. Amadeus seems to store them directly inside MainMenu.nib which is readable only if you have the Developer Tools installed. And as I see, Martin is indeed using three periods.
Well, that actually confirms my "on-the-fly theory" as I was always entering ellipses for Amadeus keyboard shortcuts, and they always work… (that was an ellipsis now :)

What has definitely changed in Leopard, however, is the use of ellipsis in German localization of Apple apps: the recent German grammatical rules obviously require a space before an ellipses, and most Apple apps follow this rule now. (That doesn't affect me much within Amadeus though, because I prefer to use it in English and I always disable the German localization.)
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Lou Kash



Joined: 16 Jul 2008
Posts: 87

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

Ron Fleckner wrote:
An ellipsis is not used in menus, I think because it looks too small.


It depends on the font you're using. Some are more narrow, some are wider than three periods in a row. Take any monospaced font like Monaco or Courier and you will find that its ellipsis is indeed very narrow because it has to fit into the given space. On the other hand, professional OpenType fonts, particularly serif fonts, often have a very wide ellipsis.
(You can trust me on this one because I'm a graphic designer by profession and so I happen to work with many different fonts and I constantly have to replace clients' three periods with correct typographical ellipsis. So I've seen many of them already… :)

In LucidaGrande both variants seem to take the same amount of space. Safari, for instance, uses ellipsis in its menus.
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Ron Fleckner



Joined: 22 Jan 2008
Posts: 41
Location: Melbourne Australia

PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 12:27 pm    Post subject: Note on keyboard shortcuts Reply with quote

On 25/01/2009, at 10:31 PM, Lou Kash wrote:

Quote:

Ron Fleckner wrote:
Quote:
An ellipsis is not used in menus, I think because it looks too small.


It depends on the font you're using. Some are more narrow, some are
wider than three periods in a row. Take any monospaced font like
Monaco or Courier and you will find that its ellipsis is indeed very
narrow because it has to fit into the given space. On the other
hand, professional OpenType fonts, particularly serif fonts, often
have a very wide ellipsis.
(You can trust me on this one because I'm a graphic designer by
profession and so I happen to work with many different fonts and I
constantly have to replace clients' three periods with correct
typographical ellipsis. So I've seen many of them already
Smile

In LucidaGrande both variants seem to take the same amount of space.
Safari, for instance, uses ellipsis in its menus.

Thanks, Lou, for your professional overview. Very enlightening. I'd
sort of guessed your point about different width ellipses in different
fonts after I'd sent my post. But...(3 dots later) didn't bother.
I'm glad you have and with such broad knowledge.

Ron
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