The confirmation that follows a Move to Trash action in 2.5 has a “Don’t ask me again” option. Clicking this seems to be irrevocable, in the sense that it doesn’t seem possible to return to the previous behaviour once this option is clicked. Is this intentional? I expected to find to find something in Preferences that would allow the user to revert back to the default behaviour, but I can’t see it.
If you decide to restore the message after checking the option not to show it again, that can be done by deleting and restoring the application’s Preferences file in your user Library.
That allows the user choice while not cluttering up DEVONthink’s options in the Preferences panel revealed by clicking the application name in the menubar.
Thanks for the reply Bill, but doesn’t that revert ALL my preferences to the default behaviour, meaning that I have to go back and reconfigure all the choices made in Preferences?
Yes. So make up your mind whether you want to see the Delete confirmation message always, or not.
Note that neither Apple’s Finder nor Mail issues a “nanny” message when an item is deleted. Like Mail, DEVONthink doesn’t send deleted items directly to the Trash, but retains a database Trash group instead, in which the deleted items remain viewable and searchable (retrievable if desired) until the Empty Trash command is invoked by the user.
So, because the devs don’t want to “clutter” the Preference panel, I have to do a full factory reset if I change my mind about a single option offered to me. Thanks.
Finder doesn’t issue a “nanny” message because it does nothing on pressing the delete key, at least on my keyboard
In the Finder, the equivalent of Delete is Move to Trash, Command-Delete. Mail uses the Delete key.
So, if I simply change my mind and want the confirmation message back, I must delete all of my (perhaps laboriously established) preferences and set them up again from scratch?
The way this is implemented does not really represent a “choice.” And I really don’t see how adding a checkbox to the “General” section of Preference’s “Editing” panel that is labeled “Display confirmation message when deleting items” “clutters” the options.
I’m really not getting why this implementation is like this. Perhaps DEVON could publish the specific entry in the preferences file that controls this behavior along with instructions about how to safely edit the file to change 'think’s behavior. Perhaps a command line that uses “defaults write” is possible? I’m sure it’ll come up as a question to support sooner or later, and I suspect that some enterprising tinkerer will attempt this sooner or later, perhaps with unwanted results.
Or, just implement the change in a future maintenance release…
Maintaining sets of user options in DEVONthink’s Preferences presents its own UI issues.
If you have been following the user forum for years, users have suggested adding literally hundreds of additional options to Preferences. True, that would add flexibility to tailoring features of the application to individual tastes. But the UI cost would be a set of options that would be bewildering to novices, and perhaps to power users as well.
DEVONthink Pro Office’s Preferences already present the user with 166 options and actions. Actually, that number is deceptively low, as some choices such as font or plain text encoding present multiple possibilities. The developers have tried to keep the items in Preferences from becoming bloated and bewilderingly complex. The user manuals document the items in Preferences, but even so a common request received by Support is for explanation of Preferences options.
Defaults are provided for most options, so that it’s possible that some users may never need to tinker with the option settings. Others, such as the choices among the Destination options under the Import tab, may be changed by the user depending on workflow changes, and are important.
Suppose the file that holds DEVONthink’s Preferences settings becomes damaged. That shouldn’t happen often for Macs with a clean operating system, a sound disk directory and no hardware problems, but over the years Support has received hundreds of reports of that problem. The solution is to Quit DEVONthink, delete the Preferences file in the user Library and restart DEVONthink, which will generate a new Preferences file with the default settings. Of course, if one installs a DEVONthink application on a new computer or a new drive, the same thing happens, a Preferences file will be created with default settings.
I’ve never had a corrupted Preferences file, but i have installed DEVONthink applications on new computers, then tailored Preferences settings to my taste. I find that I’ve customized only a handful of options, and can recreate them in less than 5 minutes.
IMHO, that justifies the developers in keeping Preferences “lean and mean”.
Yes, if a user decides that the decision to not show the cautionary message for deleting items was a mistake, it will be necessary to delete the existing Preferences file and recreate desired options. I think that’s a simpler approach than trying to deal with a larger set of options in Preferences. If one has customized the Preferences, simple screenshots of the tab panels provides documentation. Fortunately, none of those screenshots will display hundred of options, requiring multiple screens to display them. I’ll argue that this is a good approach to the UI for Preferences. It follows the KISS rule.
Of course it is completely within DEVON’s purview to implement features as it sees fit, and for whatever reasons it decides. But I would urge that a feature either be implemented or not. The halfway implementation of this option is confusing and reversing the option requires destruction of customer data – the preferences that the customer has set. I dispute that the current implementation follows the KISS “rule,” because it is not at all simple.
Some applications use a “hidden preference” model for options that their developers opt for whatever reason to keep segregated from the generally available set of user-configurable options. These hidden preferences are typically set and unset using the “defaults write” command in Terminal. Please publish the commands to set and unset the “confirm deletion of items” preference so that your customers can change their minds without having to resort to deleting all preferences.