[Usability] Display Shortcuts in Primary Menus

Hello everyone. Is this the appropriate place to discuss Gtk usability topics?

So here is one:

It would be great if Shortcuts were shown in Primary Menus, like they have been at least since 1984 in menu-based GUIs (Apple-S, Ctrl-S written right in the menu).


How am I supposed to know that I have to press Alt-F for the “Find…” command?


If there is another more suitable place to discuss usability, please let me know.

Thanks for your consideration.

The “Ctrl + S” accelerator is not the same as the “Alt + F” mnemonic. Accelerators work without menus open; mnemonics are only valid within a menu.

Press “Alt” to show the mnemonics in a menu; this works in both menus and popovers—like the ones used by the primary menu.

The accelerators are not visible in popovers in GTK3 because they require a fairly substantial and backward incompatible rework of the container structure: popovers can contain any widget, so we cannot build them out like menus, which are limited in what kind of child widget they can contain.

GTK4 allows showing accelerators in popovers built from GMenu, so this has been fixed in the development branch.

I’m confused by your terminology there, because my understanding was that “accelerators” were the underlined letters in menus — they ‘accelerate’ your navigation through the menus, by allowing you to make selections without having to move the highlight/pointer.

Whereas, keyboard combinations that don’t require (or even necessarily involve) the menu proper, those I understood to be “shortcuts”.

The GNOME 3 HIG terms the two features “access keys” and “shortcut keys”, so it sort of splits the difference between us.

And Microsoft’s developer reference for the Win32 interface library calls them “mnemonics” vs. “accelerators” (respectively), so now I’m completely lost. :confounded:

I’m using the GTK terminology, which predates the HIG: mnemonics for the single-letter underlined shortcut used by menu items and other widgets; accelerators for the (optional) modifier and key combinations used globally.

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