Announcement: "Input hints" initiative

Fellow GNOMErs!,

GNOME Shell 46 is looking to improve the onscreen keyboard experience with further support for purpose and input hints in text input elements. This includes GtkEntry, GtkTextView and derivatives.

But this support in GNOME Shell means close to nothing without apps sporting it, this is where you are involved! I created the “input hints” initiative (Provide input purpose/content hints in text input entries (#50) · Issues · GNOME / Initiatives · GitLab) to track this effort, which is massive altogether, but can be easily split across maintainers and contributors.

The steps needed to fix this initiative per-app are simple:

  1. Identify entry widgets
  2. Evaluate their purpose, and add :input-hints and input-purpose properties judiciously, none is also fine.

Maintainers, this feels like a relatively low-volume, low-effort, low-hanging fruit to address at any moment. Contributors, coordinate with the maintainers of your favorite apps if you want to participate in this initiative. For some apps this might stop at step 0, feel free to cross them off the list right away.

Some generic hints/guidance:

  • GTK_INPUT_HINT_UPPERCASE_WORDS may be fine for human/place names and titling/naming things. The latter maybe context-dependent.
  • GTK_INPUT_HINT_UPPERCASE_SENTENCES may be a nice touch for entries where human language is involved, e.g. comment boxes, instant messaging.
  • The spellcheck/no_spellcheck/word_completion input hints may help the input method underneath, in charge of OSK completion hints.
  • Use GTK_INPUT_PURPOSE_FREE_FORM (or leave it as the default) if none of the other GtkInputPurpose applies exactly to the entry.

Feel free to bring up specific cases here or at the Initiatives issue.



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