Opened 12 years ago

Closed 12 years ago

#1048 closed enhancement (fixed)

Optimize the activity for younger kids.

Reported by: brian Owned by: garycmartin
Priority: Unspecified by Maintainer Milestone: Unspecified
Component: Physics Version: Unspecified
Severity: Unspecified Keywords:
Cc: garycmartin, asaf, erikos Distribution/OS: Unspecified
Bug Status: New

Description

Simon Schampijer notes that the click and drag method of creating objects is difficult for young children. Clicking to create objects will be a first step to make Physics more accessible for new and young users.

The UI would be: a left mouse click with no drag creates a default size, while clicking and dragging allows you to set your own
size.

Change History (6)

comment:1 Changed 12 years ago by garycmartin

The UI might feel a little jumpy if we don't get this right. Would need to create default size on mouse up with no movement (or smaller than a minimum movement). That way a continuous draw operation would not initially display a large default object. Note that all object constructing tools are wrapped in safety code to prevent small objects that the box2d simulator would choke on and crash (I fixed and improved a bunch of these last time around). One of the things I specifically wanted to test with all the new work (new box2d code), is if these crashes are fixed, or if small objects still need to be prevented.

comment:2 follow-up: Changed 12 years ago by asaf

  • Summary changed from Left mouse click creates default-sized object in Physics to Optimize the activity for younger kids.

I think we should solve this by having "Basic" and "Advanced" modes which modify the behavior and maybe the number of tools. The advantage of doing it this way is that users will not have features available that they're not interested in. If dragging the mouse is an issue, maybe the draw tool doesn't make much sense. I would also like to discuss the issue of adding more tools but we can talk about that in the meeting.

comment:3 in reply to: ↑ 2 ; follow-up: Changed 12 years ago by garycmartin

Replying to asaf:

I think we should solve this by having "Basic" and "Advanced" modes which modify the behavior and maybe the number of tools. The advantage of doing it this way is that users will not have features available that they're not interested in.

I'd rather 'layer' the interface, rather than have an explicit "I'm STUPID" and an "I'm a GENUS" button ;-) The idea being you expose all the common, easy to understand tools as 1st class UI components, then reveal more complex ideas in deeper layers of the UI (sub-menus). Perhaps we can fold some existing tools together to allow space for new categories of tool (i.e. a single top-level Shapes palette could include box/triangle/circle, and others, with perhaps circle being the default – just an idea, not a recommendation).

If dragging the mouse is an issue, maybe the draw tool doesn't make much sense.

Yea, dragging the mouse is a basic skill needed in a number of other Sugar tasks and Activities, so should be taught, though Brian's proposal above does not prevent that. With the correct tweaks both click or click'n'drag can work fine and give Physics a little bit of an easier learning curve, even for some adults ;-)

Simon: What is the age range of the kids you observed this issue in?

I would also like to discuss the issue of adding more tools but we can talk about that in the meeting.

Absolutely! One of the more obvious ones is a Tab for "Examples", we could create ~10 example simulations to best cover the kinds of contraptions that can be built, to prompt ideas and experimentation as to what is possible with Physics, but need to make a call on pickle state before we do that :-)

comment:4 in reply to: ↑ 3 Changed 12 years ago by erikos

  • Bug Status changed from Unconfirmed to New

Replying to garycmartin:

Replying to asaf:

I think we should solve this by having "Basic" and "Advanced" modes which modify the behavior and maybe the number of tools. The advantage of doing it this way is that users will not have features available that they're not interested in.

I'd rather 'layer' the interface, rather than have an explicit "I'm STUPID" and an "I'm a GENUS" button ;-) The idea being you expose all the common, easy to understand tools as 1st class UI components, then reveal more complex ideas in deeper layers of the UI (sub-menus). Perhaps we can fold some existing tools together to allow space for new categories of tool (i.e. a single top-level Shapes palette could include box/triangle/circle, and others, with perhaps circle being the default – just an idea, not a recommendation).

If dragging the mouse is an issue, maybe the draw tool doesn't make much sense.

Yea, dragging the mouse is a basic skill needed in a number of other Sugar tasks and Activities, so should be taught, though Brian's proposal above does not prevent that. With the correct tweaks both click or click'n'drag can work fine and give Physics a little bit of an easier learning curve, even for some adults ;-)

Simon: What is the age range of the kids you observed this issue in?

Probably 6,7,8 years old. The older kids did not have a problem with that. Note, that most of them did use the computer as well before. I like the idea of having all in one interface, and not to split it up. It is much easier for kids to advance that way. I am sure Gary will find the right UI for that. Of course I am happy to give feedback from the field.

comment:5 Changed 12 years ago by garycmartin

  • Owner changed from brian to garycmartin
  • Status changed from new to assigned

comment:6 Changed 12 years ago by garycmartin

  • Resolution set to fixed
  • Status changed from assigned to closed

Thanks for the report, behaviour changes are:

1) If no shape has yet been created (box, triangle, and circle) a default sized shape is created on single click
2) Future single clicks of all shape tools act as a clone/duplicator of the last shape made with that tool

Feedback on this change, once Physics-3 is out, would be useful.

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