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    Recommendation for installation improvements.

    • Started by Qwertie
    • 3 Replies:
    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 18-Nov-2006
    • Posts: 14

    Shai, I just tried to install your layout and I just thought you should know, the installation process is uninituitive.

    * The Colemak package comes with many files so the user doesn't necessarily realize what to click on - for a techie it's not obvious whether to run Colemak.msi or install.exe, and while the web site says to run install.exe, not everybody reads the instructions first ("er, for example, me," I said sheepishly.) Also there's no indication what KeyboardDisplay.exe is for until one actually runs it. It's not a disaster but for less experienced users it may be confusing.
    * There are no instructions for activating and deactivating the layout. I think this is a big problem. Some people might not install it because they don't want to risk being unable to uninstall, while perhaps some who install it won't figure out how to turn it on in the first place (maybe it is activated automatically when the computer is restarted, but I don't know: I activated it without restarting my computer because hey, I'm a rebel).

    I would make three suggestions:

    1. The installation package should "hide" files that the end-user doesn't need to know about by putting those files in a subfolder.
    2. Give more instructions. Add more information on the website and either add a readme file to the zip file, or put instructions in the installation wizard. If doing the latter, ensure that the user can view the instructions at the same time as the Control Panel is displayed.
    3. When the user wants to change his computer's configuration later (e.g. a year later) he needs access to instructions. Perhaps a program group for Colemak that includes a "read me" would be a good idea. Also the program group could include KeyboardDisplay, but with a descriptive name like "Display active keyboard layout". Oh, and by the way, a lot of people don't have .NET 1.1 installed which KeyboardDisplay requires (it may or may not be compatible with .NET 2.0--I just don't know), and most laypeople have no idea what it is, so the hypothetical readme should at least have a note about it.

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    • Shai
    • Administrator
    • Reputation: 11
    • Registered: 11-Dec-2005
    • Posts: 387

    Thank you for your feedback, I'll take this into account for the next version of the installer.

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    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 06-Nov-2006
    • Posts: 7

    Next semester I'm taking C and Fortran programming so maybe I could write a new keyboard layout display program in C that doesn't require .NET at all.

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    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 18-Nov-2006
    • Posts: 14

    I don't think it's "bad" to include a .NET program, btw, because everyone will have it eventually (Windows Vista will include it). If you can write it without .NET, more power to you, but I've written MFC and C++ Windows API applications before, and it's about 10 times harder to learn than .NET. So, good luck ;)

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