Dual-Cat Reg Key

I saw Dick's earlier request in this same thread. I'm sorry for not answering sooner, but it's really not that interesting an answer, and it's much too long for its worth. But you have asked nicely twice now.

Assuming a team with finite resources, every feature created or maintained has an opportunity cost in things that the team will not do, whether in new features, better quality, or earlier shipping of the release. That is obvious, but it is useful to point out that in order to manage the product we make many decisions where these tradeoffs are important, and even the maintenance of existing features can have non-trivial costs.

So, all I can really do is explain the costs, and perhaps the train of thought. The new register is essentially new code. As functionality was brought over, it gave us a chance to examine it once again. Very early on, we decided to settle on one version of the category combos for the new register, and a single combo was deemed better for the customers we thought would use it. It has been our default for new users for a few versions now, and it tests better with potential customers.

We also did some reworking of the older register code (to base it on some of the same foundations that the new register would be using). At this time, the same thinking sort of leaked over in this form: "Is it worth the cost of reworking and retesting this code, given that we have a more popular version of the control set that we know we'll continue to develop in future versions?"

I think that it was a mistake to let the thinking leak over, or at least to let it answer the question. The team did look into the question of backwards compatability, but convinced themselves that users didn't need both ways to accomplish the same task. This evaluation didn't take into account the attachment you naturally have to certain keystroke patterns or the seeming arbitrariness of the decision.

I think that this thread has supported the thinking that both ways can be considered better by different users, but I'm glad that we were able to restore your choice in this matter.

-Russ Paul-Jones

Note: You can get the dual category registry key on the patches page.


Back to Russ' Responses Article List


Page Last Updated: Sun, 23 Jun 2019 15:17:34 GMT

Support | About the author | Sitemap | Blog | Contact Me |
This site is provided without any employment or contractual obligation with Microsoft Corporation.
Copyright © Glyn Simpson 1998-2020. All rights reserved.