Reshuffling stuff, cleaning up

The most prominent change in Citrus is the new organization of commands. Long gone are the days of grayed-out commands and unmanagable menus; now comes a magniflorious new era of contextual menus, menus offering only buttons that will do something when they’re clicked, menus that relate to what you’re doing, menus that make sense. Instead of vague categories like “Tools” and “Edit”, you get well-defined, clear-cut categories, based on what object the commands they contain apply to. And instead of having several systems of categorization throughout the UI (one for menus, one for toolbars, one for the Customize dialog, …), there’ll be just one single system.

This change means that menus could be optionally hidden, as all commands will be accessible from toolbars, and vice versa. (If the user hides the menubar, a “Tools” button holding non-contextual commands will appear.) It also means less dialog windows, as contextual menus, housing the same commands as contextual toolbars, will replace formatting dialogs.

All in all, these changes should make it easier to find and access commands.

Proposed categories


Holds commands related to the application in general, and not to the document in question. All the commands in this menu should be clickable regardless of whether any document is open.

Example commands: Create, Templates, Wizards, Open, Recent, Windows, Options, Help, About, Quit


Commands related to the file as a whole, not to any individual part.

Example commands: Undo, Redo, History (or Track changes), Select all, Save, Save as, Print, Convert to, Open in, Compare with, Properties, Statistics


Commands related to the current instance of the file, not affecting the file itself and only changing the visual presentation of the file.

Example commands: Search, Ruler, Navigator, Styles, Comments, Data sources, Insert bar, Context bar, Status bar, Full screen, Zoom, Nonprinting parts.


Commands used for adding anything to the document.

Example commands: Paste, Text box, File, Table, Chart, Shape, Comment, Break, Section, Symbol, Variable text (what others call Fields), Equation, Cross-reference, Footnote, Endnote, Index/Table.


Commands related to the current page group (page groups are demarcated by page breaks) in Document, the current layer in Drawing, and the current slide in Presentation.

Example commands for Page: Page styles, Layout, Format, Landscape (or Portrait) orientation, Margins, Columns, Background, Borders, Header, Footer, Footnote format.

Category/ies for the selected object(s)

These categories are contextual and only appear either when an object is selected or when a text field is in focus. Besides formatting commands, selection-related commands like Cut and Copy go here too.

Example categories: Paragraph, Text, Textbox, Image, Table, Shape, Group.


2 thoughts on “Reshuffling stuff, cleaning up

  1. You said page groups demarcated by page breaks.. Do you mean page breaks or section breaks (I hope thats the english term.. I think about the german ‘Seitenumbruch’)
    Because I think page breaks would be very confusing at the first glance, but not bad if I think that text which overflows a page would be hold as a type of section..

    1. I mean page breaks. Section breaks separate text within a page into rows, whereas page breaks separate pages into page groups. Page breaks can only be created by inserting them — the place where text flows from one page to the next does not constitute a page break.

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