Papercuts discussion - Composer related enhancements

Axel axel.grude at
Tue Jul 17 13:14:18 UTC 2012

I would also like to involve Magnus Melin (:mkmelin)[*] and whoever wrote (could have 
been John or Jonathan N, but I could be wrong - not sure) some prototype code on 
Composer replacement in this discussion.

If you know who I mean, can somebody forward this to them on behalf of Tb-Planning?


[*]Magnus' email link is on the Modules page, but it is broken or beyond my understanding

> /Following up: /What's the status of papercuts?
> /
> /
> Since replacing the complete composer is probably to big a task for the scope of 
> papercuts I would like to discuss a number of enhancements to enhance the current 
> (html) composer functionality:
>       Color Selection
> *Bug 453853* <> -Unable to set 
> hex value for background color in the color picker
> I would like to rename this to (upgrade color picker to allow more color 
> selections). Unfortunately I do not have Thunderbird bugzilla admin rights, and 
> maybe there is another bug on this elsewhere [I searched for Tb/Compose + {color 
> picker} and for Tb/Compose + {colors} ]?
> A quick way would probably be if we could include rainbowpicker into the core code 
> (obviously after asking its author)?
>       Format Painter
> "A copy format" function is badly needed. One problem currently is that a lot of the 
> built in formatting tools  actually insert tags (such as <big> <b> <i>) rather than 
> styles, so a more fundamental problem must be addressed first:
>       CSS Property Editor
> Image > Advanced property editor Enhancements
> I wonder if this could be generalized to apply CSS properties to all sorts of tags 
> (not just img). Ideally I would like the possiblity to select a paragraph (which we 
> should be able to turn from a <br>....section...<br>  into a <p>..</p> pair, and 
> then select something like a "layout" option.
> As a starting point we could use the "Inline Style" tab of the "Advanced Property 
> Editor" and add a dropdown to the Attribute field. The tricky bit is to select the 
> correct tag (probably the nearest enclosing tag) and to visually represent this  in 
> the Editor window.
> For this particular purpose (increasing style expressiveness in the WYSIWIG editor, 
> via inline styles) I would chose to remove the tabs "HTML attributes" and 
> "Javascript Events" and focus on css styles alone. ONe thing that Thunderbird does 
> very badly at the moment is to expose the current expressive power it has via CSS3 
> to the ordinary user. Most other rich editors have some sort of a "x-ray" mode where 
> special (meta-)characters such as tabs, line feeds, section breaks etc. are 
> displayed; what I would like to have is something generic that shows enclosing tag 
> pairs (or an outline around html constructs) so that they can easily be spotted and 
> manipulated. This is actually the hard part of this enhancement, but I think 
> discussion of this would be fruitful.
> Rationale:
> Currently, the only way to create an email with  "clean markup" is by using 
> extensions that expose HTML source, which works for me, but not most ordinary users. 
> As /first step/ we could make it easier to add inline styling via the method above; 
> this will make it easier for users to discover layout features of Composer. As a 
> /second/ /step/ we might then later encapsulate the interface so it can be used by 
> users who do not know CSS.
> I would love to be involved in such composer improvements, but I would also like to 
> assess as to what other ideas or maybe code fragments are already out there. 
> Therefore I am currently holding off on filing new (or re-appropriating existing) 
> bugs on this and adding them to the papercuts list, until I have a feel for what the 
> opinions on the list on this are.
> I would also hope that we can spend some time during MozCamp to discuss the composer 
> piece in order to devise a short term strategy for pulling this thing back into the 
> 21st century.
> regards
>   Axel
> *Axel Grude*
> Software Developer
> Thunderbird Add-ons Developer (QuickFolders, quickFilters, QuickPasswords, Zombie 
> Keys, SmartTemplate4)
> AMO Editor
> --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> *To: *"tb-planning"<tb-planning at>
> *From: *"Chris Ilias"<tb-planning at>
> *Sent: *Saturday, 09/06/12 06:49:37 06:49 GMT Daylight Time +0100
> *Subject:*What's the status of papercuts?
>> In late March, Blake sent an email listing UX priorities, including papercuts. If I 
>> do a search for TB and mailnews core bugs with [UXprio] that are fixed since March 
>> 24, I only get one bug (508776). Has there been any priority given to those bugs?
>> _______________________________________________
>> tb-planning mailing list
>> tb-planning at
> _______________________________________________
> tb-planning mailing list
> tb-planning at
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