Today we talk about Tab Order…

Today let’s talk about Tab Order: shouldn’t it be some kind of cohesion between different parts in this software? Much is very very good while some things may seem like chaos. Or what do I miss here?

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You haven’t missed anything. I think that tab order just isn’t very important for most users because they don’t use the tab key to navigate around the UI. The same goes for the developers. It would take a dedicated person to go through all the UI code and change it. Not too difficult, I think, and wouldn’t even require much programming skills, but very boring and pretty big task. It can be of course divided into two tasks: testing/reporting and editing. The first task doesn’t require looking into the source code at all. The developers might be more motivated to take care of this automatically in the future if someone would first report this with detailed information after going through the whole interface.

In the grid arrays, the cursor keys work quite well [Up] [Dn] [Left] [Right] while I have not even ever tried to use the tab order in more complex menus such as the preferences.

Indeed, not missed a thing. It’s part of open Source development I guess. Most developers work on features they find interesting to work on. And there are some other gaps in Kicad too, but the gaps get smaller and further apart.

This is probably a bit of a mess because no one ever thought of fixing it. It’s also a question of priorities. There are currently 1461 open issues on gitlab for KiCad, and the number is still growing:

What does “Tab order” mean in this context?
To me, Tab is used when jumping from one text entry field to the next in a form. Nothing else.

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And tab order is then the order in which the cursor jumps around from one field to the other. For example @00:13 [Tab] goes from left to right through the grid array, but then stops, while TheSwede probably expects it to go to the next line.

Yes, TheSwede probably think so, or may be even more interesting: why does the TAB suddenly STOP. Can be TheSwedes keyboard, or something else…

As written before: the most likely cause is that no KiCad programmer has ever written code for it. The Grid array is very likely a library function as some kind of building block, and it is likely to have built in but limited functionality of moving with the [Tab] key input. So it goes to the right with each [Tab] by default, until it hits the border, and then it gets confused and does not know what to do anymore.

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Ok thanks, just mentioning this as if things like this works as “normal” the software get a more “pro” feel. Maybe not important for a user who prefer to drive around clicking the mouse instead of using shortcuts/keyboard…