Re: [dwm] column layout revival?

From: voltaic <>
Date: Tue, 4 Sep 2007 22:34:21 -0400

I am in support of keeping tags the way they are.
As others have mentioned I also have grown accustomed to using tags and find
their functionality very useful.

For me what sets DWM apart from other window managers is that it is truly
dynamic. There are only very few items in DWM that I define statically. All
the window "management" I personally have to do in DWM is to tag a client
with the appropriate tag. For most applications I regularly use they are
automatically tagged as specified in the config. DWM does the rest for me --
I don't have to worry about moving clients left and right, or up and down a
stack. In fact, I like the fact that DWM limits the way I can arrange
clients! I discover that I really don't need to do the arranging myself.
After all I can only physically work with one client at a given time, and it
makes sense to me that this client is in the master area, where it takes a
larger portion of my screen space compared to the rest of the clients.

However, I would understand that when working with a very large number of
clients at once (like David Tweed does) there arises a need to arrange the
stacked clients in a way that makes looking at them easier and more

I think this is the important question that needs to be answered: What does
DWM mean?

To me DWM means a window manager that does its job and actually manages my
windows for me. I have to do as little managing as possible.
This also means that DWM is completely predictable. Since there is no
hierarchy other than master/stacked, I know what will happen when I spawn a
new client or add another tag to my current view.
DWM also gives me simplicity: It makes it simple to view and unview a group
of applications via a single keyboard shortcut. In the "workspace" way of
doing things I would have to get away from what I'm working on, switch to
another workspace, and find the client and move it into the workspace I
want. This seems less efficient to me.
I also prefer that DWM doesn't have window decorations. This saves space,
and removes redundant information from the screen. Why have window
decorations that tell you the title of the client when you can just look at
the client and see its contents?

I feel like I'm repeating myself here, but I'm often wondering why other
people are using DWM if it's not for the tags? If I didn't care about the
tags and wanted a "workspace" based WM with layout preservation I feel like
there are a lot of alternatives that do this already (xmonad, ion, etc.).

And I don't think a simple layout for DWM will accomplish what Anselm is
suggesting. Moving clients around in the column goes hand in hand with state
preservation: One feature would be useless without the other. The solution
here could be one of the two:

1) A super window manager that is DWM+WMII. That is to say a window manager
with a column mode that offers state preservation and workspaces, and a
master/stacked mode that offers tags. The two modes would have to be
exclusive of one another. I don't see how one would expect to arrange a
workspace and then bring into view another set of tags. How would this work
in a predictable manner? So this would really be essentially two different
window managers in one executable. I guess this would also duplicate the
amount of information that needs to be stored about each client (tag
information, and placement/workspace information). Chances are, if someone
likes tags then that person would probably never use the workspace-based
half of the window manager, and vice versa. Overall this would be an
interesting idea, but not minimal in any sense.
2) More realistically then, a fork, or perhaps a WMIII would be more
appropriate as this idea is really something that is fundamentally different
from DWM.

Received on Wed Sep 05 2007 - 04:34:24 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0 : Sun Jul 13 2008 - 14:52:18 UTC