Browsing/Searching Unity Dash requires too much mouse/touchpad movement
Browsing/Searching Unity Dash requires too much mouse/touchpad movement if keyboard shortcuts are disregarded.
For example, in the screenshot attached start at X. This being a possible start point while in another application and wanting to bring up the launcher. Sorry for the terrible presentation but follow the dots. One would have to navigate to the top of the screen to pull up the dash, once up, the individual lenses icons are at the bottom of the screen. Once the lens is selected, in this case applications, you have to jump up to the top of the screen again to perform a search (assuming the decision to search was made after selecting the lens here). Likewise, if you instead decided to filter the display its a jump up top, and then off to the right to select which filter one would like to use.
This can be extremely frustrating for new users, those with a touchpad, as well as those such as I with an RSI. To play both sides, the search functionality is great so it's not often I personally need to filter by lens. However as mentioned above if you don't do it from the initial dash lens then it becomes burdensome.
As mentioned this does not take into account the keyboard shortcuts which are awesome but most don't use them and new users or those not familiar with keyboard shortcuts are not going to know they exist. Also, I get that the initial view has four options for media, internet, more apps, and find files but they don't necessarily perform the same function.
I believe that we can establish a more efficient and accessible layout for the dash. For example, when clicking filter results at the top perhaps instead of a side pane you get a drop down of potential filters. Also, maybe keeping the lens icons in the same general area as the search and filter. Or actually incorporating it into the search bar as show in the second attached picture. Small improvements can increase efficiency, accessibility, and user experience!
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 11.10
Package: unity 4.24.0-0ubuntu2b1
Uname: Linux 3.0.0-12-generic x86_64
Date: Thu Nov 10 23:11:51 2011
UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to oneiric on 2011-09-28 (44 days ago)