Wish: Manual or automatic switch back to the Standard toolbar tab

I have two ideas about the toolbar tabs. As many users reported in the past, the toolbar tabs are quite useful, because they allow a quick access to the majority of icons, but they also have one drawback which is hiding some of the most important icons, such as Save, Undo, Redo, Cut, Copy, Paste, several viewport navigation icons, Show/Hide, Select and a few others located in the “Standard” tab. Once another tab is selected, they hide the aforementioned main icons that are used quite often. Constantly switching between tabs is slow and takes extra mouse clicks and mouse travel each time.
So, here are my propositions how this could be enhanced to be more user-friendly:

  1. Use a key combination (Shift+Esc, maybe?) to switch back to the “Standard” toolbar tab. That would be a very quick and convenient way to show the main icons, especially for those who use a 3d mouse or a regular mouse with multiple customizable buttons (example: I have a mouse scroll wheel with a side tilt function with two customizable buttons that are super convenient to assign some Rhino commands there). It will completely eliminate the need to move the mouse pointer to the upper left corner of the screen. I don’t want to sound lazy :sweat_smile:, but when you do these actions hundreds of times per day, they get repetitive and add up to the tiredness of the right hand.

An alternative to this could be a right-click or middle-click on any toolbar tab to show it temporarily, then a click on any of its icons will return to the previously shown toolbar tab in the same group (preferably the “Standard” tab).

  1. Add an option in the “Toolbar Properties” called “Return to” or “Switch to” that will allow the user to choose which tab will be the parent one in the toolbar group to show after using a single command from another tab in the same group of tabs. If “None” is selected, then the secondary tab will remain even if multiple of is commands are being used. The advantage of this approach is that it allows to set different parent tabs to each secondary tab. For example, clicking on one icon in the “New in V7” tab could activate switching to the “Standard” tab afterwards, whereas clicking on one icon in the “Curve tools” toolbar could activate switching to the “Surface tools” instead.

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How about using the Microsoft Office approach and simply duplication the 3 or 4 “very likely to be used no matter which toolbar you are using” buttons on all the toolbars?

I have always just used the default Rhino toolbar setup, since I’m not a production guy going for speed, but I believe it is possible for the user to reconfigure any of the toolbars to have the icons he/she would like, even adding the same icons to as many toolbars as they would like.

I agree, however, that the Redo/Undo button should be on every DEFAULT toolbar.

Copying all the essential icons on the rest toolbar tabs would mean that their usable width would be hugely reduced, thus making them quite limited to do their main purpose, which is to allow an access to the full amount of icons they consist.

I think that being able to right-click on a toolbar tab to make it temporarily shown until any icon on it is being clicked and then automatically switching back to the previous tab is more convenient, because it still leaves as much space as possible for other icons. Plus, the user is still able to left-click on the tab to make it permanently shown (just like its current behaviour).

Well, yes. There’s definitely a tradeoff to be made: if there’s no more space on a toolbar, which icon will you drop to make room for your all-toolbar duplicate? I guess that’s why they designed the “editable toolbar” concept. After some amount of “everybody” default toolbar optimization, it gets down to what works best for an individual user. That’s why I suggested adding only the Undo/Redo to all the toolbars, as I think it would be appreciated by most users.

I don’t mean to make light of your suggestion. I can surely see that it could work well if properly designed. As another approach, perhaps it would be possible to have a single small “master” toolbar that could be invoked using your concept. I kind of like the way Win 10, when you control-alt-delete it brings up the “putting it to bed menu” so you can mouse select what you want to do, (here’s my point) by just pushing the “alt” key it turns on the single letter key display to remind you which key to push if you want to use the keyboard to choose your action. It might seem to a developer like a lot of work for practically nothing, but to the user it’s a nice touch.

Having the ability to copy/move icons to customize other toolbar tabs is nice, but the idea of this topic is to explain why a right-click temporary use of a children tab to access a certain icon and then switching back to the parent tab (“Standard”) is so essential for those who use multiple commands in their workflow. :slight_smile: