The properties panel is new and and needs further work. More properties will be added when users report deficiencies. It was developed that way during 6.99, so blame yourself if it lacks something . On the other hand, maybe it had to be rushed a bit to get it ready for v7.
Yeah my bad indeed, though that’s what i am doing is trying to evaluate whether it really needs this or not. It is actually handled by edit text properties window perfectly
I’m just generally of the opinion that what KiCad needs most is consistency, after all a property panel is less useful if it does not allow you to modify certain properties. Given that it uses quite a lot of screen estate, it should be of high priority.
But yes its understandable, mainly from open source users perspective, that its not totally polished on arrival. And its also clear form the fact that the panel can not be torn off from the GUI as a floating window that there are deficiencies.
I’m just generally of the opinion that what KiCad needs most is consistency
I sign this.
after all a property panel is less useful if it does not allow you to modify certain properties.
At this point I have mixed feelings. Putting all settings into the properties-panel will result in an overcrowded, less usable panel. First you need more time to find the desired content/setting line, than you probably will need more time to click/scroll onto this line. Also with more information it’s harder to remember at wich line this information is located.
Take for instance the properties-panel if you select a pad - it’s already now more filled than the screen-height (admittedly at my pc-system). And it still shows only half of all the settings a pad contains.
So yes I understand that having all possible settings on the properties panel could be useful, but it also creates disadvantages for the simple everyday use (it’s the old discrepancy between few simple and fast features and a complete filled, very mighty yet harder to use tool)
On my monitor the properties panel wastes 2/3-1/2 of its area with empty space, at work even more. Presumably you can scroll up and down if its too large. Its not my fault you use laptops with limited screen estate.
But really what it needs is a way to filter what you see and what you do not see.
You don’t have a bog standard 1080p monitor? What?
yes, 1080p. But with 125% (recommended) desktop scaling. As said I don’t take my situation as standard to others, but at same time I hope that others don’t (always) assume their setup is the benchmark.
And my second machine (the actual working laptop) still is an old system with 1366x768 pixels. (advantage, so I not thoughtless change the system: many USB-ports and a PCMCIA-slot for real hardware-expansion cards)
Independent from the resolution remains the typical compromise in a GUI: more information allows to change more settings, but also requires more concentration to remember and find the correct setting. This is espially relevant for part-time users (as can be seen in forum questions) and for users which are older than 45years (as example, you can take any value you want, aging is a creepy process)
And the above mentioned filter (as example) helps, but first also using a filter requires time and mouseclicks and secondly is only useful if the user knows already the term to filter.
Nevertheless, my text is not against expanding the properties panel (I have used it already extensively since introduction in 6.99), it should be read as a expression of my general point of view to always be careful with the user interface. Sometimes (seldom) I have the feeling that a (exotic) user-demand is added very fast and from that on all other users have to live with an additional icon/option/behaviour (with the mentioned disadvantages of crowding the GUI).
I also understand both, the demand from someone, as well as the developer adding the feature: it’s cool to add somethink new, it’s also cool to fulfill a wish. The disadvantages will only show in the long run and will also stop noone from working. So there is less motivation to say “No” to some demands.
But it’s sunday, I should not write so much. Especially because I only benefit, but not don’t contribute with programcode to the project.
@jmk : all points are valid and that’s why I use the properties panel also only partially.
But you forgot the main/best advantage of the properties panel: it works on multiple selected items - so with the properties panel we now have a way to change settings for multiple items at the same time.
As a tip: Because of the needed screen estate: I have setup all panels to similar shortcuts:
F11: appearance panel (right side of screen)
Shift+F11: properties panel, normally off, if needed I switch it on
CTRL+F11: search panel, normally off, if needed I switch it on
Yeah the properties panel does not seem very mature. There are lots of applications that do this kind of half-assed properties panel implementation. Which leads to useless benefits. However there are also examples of software where the properties system is so mature that it lets you do nearly anything you need with it hardly needing any other GUI.
But it is useful for quickly altering selected font sizes etc etc without having to individually touch items. Just you can not change font in it.
To be honest though KiCad really needs a spreadsheet view, which would be properties panel, but a column for each component. With a suitable filtering option this in itself would eliminate the need of most BOM plugins made.
But yeah i agree it uses too much real estate for too little benefit. But i work mostly on multi monitor systems so having it open on monitor 2 or 3 is not such a problem. Only the damn panel only works if docked, geez. Having hotkey for toggling it would be nice, especially if it was a floating window.
KiCad really needs a spreadsheet view, which would be properties panel, but a column for each component. With a suitable filtering option this in itself would eliminate the need of most BOM plugins made.
This can already (halfway) be achieved with the combination of properties panel + search panel:
enable both (see above, thats why both got a hotkey from me)
in search-panel: select all desired footprint / zone / textitem.
you can use the filter-box to reduce the amount of displayed items in the search panel
and you can multiselect items in the search-panel with Shift+click
all the selected items show up in the properties-panel and the parameters for these selection can be changed there (just not all parameters, the font is missing)
I use these method already as “poor mans zone dialog” - works relatively well enough.
After usage I always close both panels to get the real estate back for placing and routing tasks.