UI Wish List

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Moderator: Stas Yatsenko

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brucek
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UI Wish List

Post by brucek » 21.11.2016 23:36

Greetings! I'm fairly new here and have been trying out Helicon for a few weeks as a replacement for Zerene. I really like a lot about Helicon, but there are a few user interface things that are driving me nuts, all relating to retouching.
1. The keyboard shortcuts would work OK if I was a left handed mouse user, but... I'm right handed, so the keyboard shortcuts and mouse are both right hand operations, forcing me to move my hand between the two, or cross over awkwardly. The main gotcha for me is being able to scroll through the source images with the PageUp/PageDn keys. I can't do it comfortably without taking my hand off the mouse in Helicon. Since this is a frequent operation, it is quite inefficient. In Zerene, more functionality is given to the mouse, with modification by the shift and 'S' key. This is great for right handed use, because you don't have to take your hand off either mouse or keyboard during the retouch process. Specifically, Zerene maps this way during retouch:
  • Scroll wheel with no modifier: sets brush size
    Scroll wheel with Shift key: scrolls through stack for source image
    Scroll wheel with Space bar: zoom in/out
    S: show current source frame instead of destination (maybe less useful since Helicon previews source inside the brush)
    Scroll wheel with S and Shift: show source as you scroll through stack
2. You may notice that Zerene and Helicon map the scroll wheel differently and this is a challenge to adapt to after years of using Zerene. I end up zooming a lot when I want to change the brush size. Yes, I will get used to it in time, but it would be nice to have it configurable to make it easy to go back and forth between tools.
If you could allow remapping of the keyboard/mouse shortcuts like many apps do, that would probably be the easiest way to make it easier for Zerene people to migrate to Helicon. This would reduce the re-learning curve significantly and would allow both people who are right and left handed to work more naturally.

3. Retouch mode uses less than half of the screen to show the retouching image. My main monitor is 30" and it I'm still finding the image to be frustratingly small. I agree that it is nice to have the source image avaiable to see, but for me, it is better to see the destination image as large as possible. Ideally, Helicon would allow use of a second monitor for the source image and/or other UI, but this doesn't seem possible right now, and I expect it would be a significant development task. If that is a no-go, can you give a way to allow full screen or most of the screen for the image and give a keystroke to shift between source and destination as Zerene does?

I'm not saying you should duplicate Zerene, but they are doing some things right that would be a benefit to your users (well, me anyway.)

I do intend to purchase a license when my free period expires since I really like the direction you have taken with this product!

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Stas Yatsenko
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Re: UI Wish List

Post by Stas Yatsenko » 24.11.2016 15:34

1 and 2. I'm not sure why you would press PageUp / PageDown with your right hand. Have you tried doing it with the left hand?
Configurable shortcuts is a good idea, but it's not trivial to implement. We won't be able to do it in the near future due to a pile of other current tasks. But I will add it to the to-do list.

3. That is definitely something we want to do, although not in the nearest future either. At the very least displaying source image and resulting image in two different windows is actually doable without too much work. It's the switch and other controls for the display mode that will take real work.

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brucek
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Re: UI Wish List

Post by brucek » 29.11.2016 03:18

Thanks for your reply, Stas. The issue with the PageUp/PageDown keys is that they are on the right side of the keyboard, and thus naturally right handed keys. The mouse is also in my right hand, so I have to switch from mouse to keyboard and back. Make sense?
Yes, I've tried using my left hand, and it is really awkward and uncomfortable. Maybe it's a difference in keyboard layouts, but I'm using the standard US keyboard and I've never seen one that was not laid out this way.

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Stas Yatsenko
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Re: UI Wish List

Post by Stas Yatsenko » 01.12.2016 17:50

I guess it's a matter of preference / approach / whatever works for you. Sometimes I press these keys with my right hand, and sometimes with the left - depending on whether or not I need a mouse. I don't see a problem reaching there with the left hand.

As I said, we'll probably add the option to customize keys eventually, but not soon.

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