Role of addons

Patrick Cloke clokep at
Fri Sep 14 18:33:43 UTC 2012

On Fri, Sep 14, 2012 at 2:30 PM, Mike Conley <mconley at> wrote:

> I think the major issue here is that the UI of Thunderbird is old and
>> creaky and likes to display a lot to the user...much of which the user
>> might not care about.  Instead of ripping things out to fix this, the UI
>> could be made "simpler" by default with advanced options hidden in other
>> tabs, windows, dialogs, etc.
> There is a tricky balance here, especially since there's the idea of
> subscribing to a philosophy of minimal disturbance for current users.
> Not to mix two threads here, but would the idea be to just keep the UI the
> way it is for current users, and attempt to simplify / modernize the UI for
> new users?
> -Mike

The major issue with that is maintenance.  Maintaining two UIs in parallel
sounds like a nightmare.  (And it's kind of three, with the effects of
SeaMonkey thrown in there...oh wait, 4, if you consider the effects of chat
on Instantbird too, oh wait...five if you consider that calendar often
needs to update it's UI to match things in Thunderbird, but it's done after
the fact...oh wait, 6...well Sunbird is dead, we'll ignore that.)

There's a lot of code thrown around in comm-central, many of it shared by
multiple projects (mostly back-end stuff, mind you, but that of course
affects the UI too).  I certainly wouldn't want to add another layer of
complexity onto that.

It also isn't clear to me about whether this is about UI issues only or
also about ripping out backend components.

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