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What it the purpose of the chapter "Various Printer Options Dialogs"? The "Printer Options" dialog is a system dialog provided by the printer. OOo can it only use as it is, and cannot change anything there.Regina 16:51, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes, but: you mean "Properties...", not "Options...". "Options..." brings up application specific print settings, while "Properties..." brings up the native printer driver dialog. PhilippL

The chapter title is "Various Printer Options Dialogs". It seems to me, that it shows screenshots from a native printer driver dialog. If yes, then there are two problems: (1) Chapter title should be "Various Printer Properties Dialogs" (2) What is the purpose of that chapter?
ah, ok I understand, now PhilippL
Re (1): The captions below the graphics state both options and preferences, so I just removed options, okay?; Re (2): It is meant to better understand how printing works in OOo and what other dialogs/terminology/... is affected. You may notice that e.g. the "Warning Print Options Dialog" is pretty different from the other options (no trim, other wording). --ChristophNoack 22:43, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
As far as I see, it mixes up dialogs which are generated by OOo and dialogs, which are generated from the printer driver. I have added a row for the dialogs which are generated from the printer driver of my HP printer. Perhaps you make a similar row for your printer?
As far as I remember, the "Warning Print Options Dialog" was introduced as a short fix for the buggy implementation of the options settings in Draw. I think, those settings should be integrated into the printing dialog again. Regina 17:00, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Added more fields to adjust the N-Up pages like regina mentioned. This does not yet interact with the copy count (aka. one page document twice on paper). However the requested margins are available. The copy count interaction yet to come. PhilippL

Thanks, that is nice know. Regina 21:07, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Mmh, this will require a clean up if we keep that. Concerning the latter functionality, I recommend to not implement it. --ChristophNoack 22:43, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
But copy count interaction would make OOo unique. You always need workarounds or special programs to get such printing. From my experience on user forums, I'm not the only one, who is interested in such a feature. Regina 17:00, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
Regina, could you please add that to the new "other ideas" section, along with some references to some of the forum discussions. That would be great! So, this idea isn't lost and I could have a look at other users' opinions. Thanks! --ChristophNoack 15:05, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

I have added a screen shot from Acrobat Reader. It has two interesting ideas.

  1. A slider beneath the preview to scroll through the sheets.
  2. Four arrangement modes. That might be useful for languages with right-to-left or top-down direction. Regina 21:07, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Added repeat count to N-Up

Added another control to the N-Up page to complete the feature set, you can set a repeat count now to repeat every page in the N-Up setup. In the example you see a 2 page A5 document printed in 3 culumns on A4. This should do the trick for regina. However I agree with Christoph we definitely need a simpler version of this; I suggest a "View advanced options" checkbox on the lower left.

I think OOo has to implement the four arrangement variants in addition. You find this variants in the Acrobat Reader printing dialog and too in my HP printer settings.
N-Up needs surely a simple and an advanced mode. All that together is too much for a simple use. What about a drop-down list like in Acrobat Reader. It has the choices 2,4,6,9,16,Custom. Is it possible to hide rows, columns, repeat. margins, and spacing and show it only if "Custom" is chosen? If yes, then I would keep in simple mode: drop-down for count of pages (including "Custom"), portrait/landscape, drop-down for arrangement, checkbox for border, all in the upper part. The other settings go to the lower part and are only shown in "Custom" mode. Regina 17:00, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Dialog Proposal

Proposal for distributing the settings on the tabs

I've made a spreadsheet document, where each sheet corresponds to one tab in the printing dialog. It describes only the right part of the dialog and assumes that there is always a preview in the left part of the dialog. The distribution is different from the CWS. I use the "tabs": Job Setup, Print Range, Page Content, N-UP, Scaling and Position. I have tried to define kind of control, value range and default. I have marked beneath the module whether this control is relevant/possible for that module. There are no mockups but only text. I hope that my description is clear enough.

I have put brochure under N-Up, because it is a kind of setting 2 pages on one paper sheet. I have put the margins not under N-Up but in a new "Scaling and Position" tab, because such margins are useful for normal printing too, if you want an unsymmetrical output for to bind the sheets.

The Math module do not need most of the settings, because it has neither a page style nor has the document more than one page. Concerning WriterWeb module I am not sure what page settings are available. I hope that it is technical possible the hide/show and to activate/deactivate controls and tabs depending on the content.

There are a lot of confusion in Calc about the page counting and also N-Up might be confuse page number and physical sheet. Therefore I think, that the "page" number in the tab "Job Setup" should always be that number that is used in the preview.

I would be pleased if you have a look at my proposal and comment on it.Regina 19:49, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

- your proposal includes lots of new features like "printing with antialiasing", "percent scaling" and such. In fact we had a zoomed printing control in spadmin for over six years and nobody ever complained that it was not functional. So please, don't add lots of features just because you think someone on the world might perhaps need them once in the next ten years. Please remember, this is not a feature wishlist, we want to have a new printing UI for 3.2, not 4.6. (PhilippL)

Percent scaling belongs to the printer options in Math module. Regina
Concerning new print features: You are right. That is impossible for 3.2. Concerning anti-aliasing: I do not know, whether and how the new anti-aliasing feature effects printing already. The wish itself is very old, see Issue 4748 Regina

Proposal without tabs. Mockups.

Christoph explained to me why not to use tabs. I have now looked at his proposal. I see two problems: (1) The area for the options is only four lines high. (2) The preview area is portrait. It would be better to reserve a square to be able to preview landscape sheets too. Even if you use the way to show a landscape print 90° turned, there might be paper sheets with square format. In the mockups, I have integrated the subrange option "page 1-n" into the options area. That gives about six lines room for options. The mockups contain in addition some grey elements to show where space it available to integrate further information.

Another question is about grouping of such options. Should they be grouped in a way, that those options, which belong together in content are grouped together, although some of them might be rarely used? Or should they be grouped, so that the most used ones are in one (first) group? Are there already proposals?

Not all options are needed in all contexts, for example Calc-option "only selected sheets". Is it possible to show them dependent on the context? Regina

Re: Design proposals - System Independent Print Dialog - Selecting the Printer and Providing Printer Information

There are several suggestions how to show the printer selection including state information. These all show state for all printers at once; this is a no-go for anything other than simply a list of printer connected to your local desktop (in which case you don't need the state information anyway, as you can see them directly). On a real network with a hundred printers each of those would have to be connected to show their state; this can take several minutes (trust, me that is from experience), which is an obvious no-go. Only getting a list ove printer names is going to be efficient, so printer state should only be displayed if a printer is actually selected.


Mmh, how do other applications handle that? I don't have an example for hundreds of printers, but today my Gnome print dialog shows a table with all available printers including their location and their status. --ChristophNoack 21:58, 21 June 2009 (UTC)

Visualization of Printed Pages in the Print Preview

Really a nice idea, but not within the next 3 years ;-)

Oh, Macs do that - at least until now.

Ph. Lohman asking on Mac Porting mailinglist: "the current state is a backstep in so far as the native mac print dialog does not show a preview anymore owing to the fact that the same binary is suitable for MacOSX 10.4 also. We could solve this by having a two step approach: have the print options we add (and that result in the missing preview) appear in a first dialog, followed by the native print dialog, which would then show a preview again. The question is what is preferable to the Mac user. "

Having an extra dialog pop up every time I want to print don't seem to me a good idea - and loosing preview ability also is not exactly what I would expect from an UI improvement.

So can we please stay at least for Macs with the current File > Printer Settings > Options (which itself is a copy of > Preferences > <OOo Writer|Calc|Impress > Print) as a pre-setting of the document which has to be decided before start printing (once, not every time new)? And keep a working Preview? when the day comes and we drop 10.4 support, we may integrate this into a native printer tab.

For OOo native print dialog this behavior may be changed according to the other operating systems (I don't think that much mac users will choose that option)--Uwealtmann 19:04, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

Comments on Mockup Image:2009-07-14_PrintingDialog.png

This may be already mentioned elsewhere, but in Image:2009-07-14_PrintingDialog.png I see a lot of empty space next to the printer names. In our office, all printers are named "P229", "P392" and the like, so it would be great if make, model and location would also be included in the line with the printer name (and not just revealed when clicking on "Printer Details", which results in a tedious trial-and-error procedure when trying to find the one color printer in our office).

I like the big print preview and the forward/backward buttons. On my Mac, there are similar controls:
<<  <    >  >>
I don't know whether the 10-back and 10-forward buttons work better or worse than the text field in the mockup. They have the advantage of not requiring a hand change from mouse to keyboard and back, but that's about it.

Print dialog for Writer (simple), tab "General":

  • (typo) "All slides" should read "All pages", but hey, it's a mockup. ;)
  • "Selection" doesn't say what pages would be printed. I often like to check whether the pages I want will actually be printed. How about actually showing the page numbers that will be printed, like
                O Selection       8-11
  • The section name "Print" is sort of meaningless. How about calling it "Include" or "Include in printout"?

Print dialog for Writer, tab "Text Document":

  • When looking for these options as a user, I would actually first try to find them under the tab "Output options". From my perspective, most of them sound very technical/obscure and not particularly "Text Document"-related.
  • Yep, when I want to increase the print contrast to "real" black and white, I would first try the "Options" tab, then the General-Printer Details, then General-Printer preferences, then maybe "Page layout" and, lastly, "Text Document" (or "Spreadsheet" or "Presentation", for that matter.
    Why? I want to do something technical and printing-related. All those "second tabs" are content-related. Maybe OOo-internally they're also technical, but I would only expect content-specific options in them.

Print dialog for Writer, tab "Page Layout":

  • "Order" dropdown: There will be merely 4 options for which a dropdown is inefficient (the space saved doesn't justify the additional click to open). How about 4 buttons, which could graphically depict the ordering?
  • "Limit to" dropdown: What is the purpose of this element? -- Aaah, you mean "Print odd"/"Print even pages!"! Pretty obscure naming, "limit to", IMO: Limit what? The printed pages, the layout, the ordering selected above?
  • "Pages per Sheet: Custom...": please lose the ellipsis -- this choice does not "drill down" some modal hierarchy

Print dialog for Writer, tab "Output options":

  • Bad naming: Aren't all the settings in the whole print dialog "output options" of some sort?
  • Semantic overlap with printer choice ("real" printer vs. file) and revealable printer details/options in first tab. Can the tab "output options" be integrated with the printer choice/detail view?
  • "Print to file" -- what file? PDF, DVI, XPS, ODW, ODS, TXT, DOC? Please include in naming.

Button row: I strongly prefer "Print to file..." because "Save..." is ambiguous and could mean "Save print settings..." or even "Save file before printing...".

Print dialog for Calc (simple), tab "General":

  • The controls for "All pages" and "Page range" have now moved to a different grouping (from "Range and Copies" to "Print")! I find this weird.
  • Inconsistently, "Collate" is still part of the "Range and Copies" group -- so do I collate sheets instead of pages now, or what?
  • I understand the Calc problem of having to differentiate between "sheets" and "pages". But this distinction can be made clearer, e.g. so:
Data to print  ----------------------------------------------------------
O All Sheets
O Selected Sheets   Sheet1, Sheet2
O Selected Cells    A2:L60
Range and copies --------------------------------------------------------
O All pages                            |   Number of copies:    [__4][]
O Page range       [______________]    |   [ ] Collate          (preview)

Print dialog for Impress (Printer details, warning area), tab "General":

  • "Printer Details" lacks make & model of the printer (not necessary if included in the printers list -- which I hope!)
  • I may be mistaken, but at least on Windows, there's already a printer metadata text field called "Location" which usually tells you where to find the printer (building, room, etc.).
  • "Status": Is the status text updated when the printer changes status while I'm in the print dialog?
  • Section called "Print": Again, the name is not particularly helpful, but "Include" is not really applicable to the "Slides per page" selection. But I would still find "Include" better than "Print" -- "Print" isn't helpful at all, but "Include" is at least partially helpful. ;)
  • I take it that the "Slides per page" and "Order" controls duplicate functionality from the "Layout" tab?
    • IF DUPLICATION: This is OK, I guess, considering that "Slides per page" is needed very frequently when printing presentations. But it's important that the settings in the controls be synchronized across places. So if I set "Slides per page" to 6 on the "General" tab, and then switch to the "Layout" tab, it will have to be 6 there, too. I wouldn't deactivate the corresponding control elements in the Layout tab, because users who are used to set those settings might go straight there without examining the "General" tab, and they will be surprised of not being able to configure N-up-printing for their presentation.
    • IF NO DUPLICATION: So we've got the same situation as with Calc (sheets vs. pages) here (slides vs. pages)? Do we really need to be able to configure N slides per page and then, separately, M "pages" per printed page (i.e. NxM slides per printed page)? I think this might be an extremely rare requirement.

Print dialog for Impress, tab "Presentation":

  • The tab name "Presentation" is slightly ambiguous. It may be understood correctly as "Content of my slide show", but it may also be understood as "How to present my content in the output, i.e. printout". The latter would essentially mean the same as "Layout" and cause people to try to find settings in the wrong tabs. Maybe some clearer name can be found for this tab.
  • "Contents": Good
  • Again, like with the "Text Document" tab of Writer, I wouldn't expect to find the "Quality and Color" settings in this tab at all! Much rather in the printer details, printer preferences or output options.
  • "Size": The option "Default" doesn't mean anything. At least, it's meaning is secret, only known to the mythical Keeper of Defaults (a distant cousin of the "Optimal" zoom setting)
  • "Size":"Tile pages"... I don't get what this selection would result in, and what "Tile pages" has to do with "Size" (indirectly, maybe). Is this another duplication of "Slides per page"?

Some comments on the mockup itself: I like how they use just the right level of detail/abstractness. The writer/calc/impress color coding is a bit hard to get used to (and the colored bars don't save any space compared the vertical word "impress"/"writer"). The arrows seem to mean "alternatively/or" (and not "and from here, we come to...").

--Anjoschu 20:49, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

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