2.8 and menus (i.e. discoverability)?

I am a professional 3D content creator, but only a part-time Blender user.

I enjoy Blender when I use it, but since I don’t have the opportunity to use it all that often I find that I am not developing the muscle memory for all of the hidden options (which seem to make up a fair bulk of the usefulness of the program).

I have been following (and supported financially) the code quest and the general 2.8 development project only very loosely. I am excited to see all the amazing improvements.

My question is whether any progress has been made to move every option out of the shadows and into real menus. This seems like it is the biggest barrier for me (and even more so my colleagues) to using Blender more than I do. Every time I want to do something that I haven’t done in a while, I have to go to the docs to find the magic key combination that makes that option work. If there were menus like every other application that we use we could do some simple browsing and discover features that we don’t use on a regular basis (or never even knew existed).

I know search is an option (and I use it) but it isn’t the same thing.

Is this something that has been added to 2.8? Or is it planned? More than the “non-standard” UI (which isn’t really all that different from many other apps except for in a few key places) this is the bit that stops me and my colleagues from adopting Blender into our primary workflow. I hope this is a change that is being implemented! I would be very excited about that.


I don’t understand what you mean. The vast majority of blender’s options have been in menus since 2.5.

Can you quote some examples of things that aren’t discoverable?

Nothing changed in that front. Stuff are still scattered all over the place, for example, mesh tools like Loop cut/knife/poly build etc, they are not in the mesh or vertex/edges/faces menus, they only live in the left tool bar, which makes totally no sense.
So yeah, blender still suffers from serious lack of organization.

Enjoy the maze. :wink:

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I think the idea was all modal tools go to the toolbar, and non-modal commands go to the menus (similar to what they are doing in 2.8). The issue with 2.5-2.7 is the fact that most of the tools a user would want to use aren’t modal, so they had to mix tools like loopcut and knife with commands. In 2.8 there are going to be modal versions of these commands, so this distinction will be more obvious.

I was going to say that the only options that can’t be found in the menus are for grouping and parenting, but I realized they are in the object menu while you are in object mode. I don’t think we currently have options that can’t be found in a menu (or toolbar) somewhere in blender.

Just makes no sense.
Golden rule, every function inside a software must be found in the menus,otherwise it’s just a mess.

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I don’t get what you mean. The toolbar is a type of menu. The issue is more with the logic of what type of menu to use which is broken right now in 2.7. If the rule is that the toolbar is only for modal tools, then it needs to be more strictly enforced, and that is happening in 2.8.

Well, it might be ok for some people, but for me it’s unacceptable. I come from c4d, organization there is rule number one.
But we can always live with some weird things. :wink:

Sorry for posting a question and then disappearing… Minor medical emergency consumed all of my time.

I"ll try to take a moment to try to list the things that don’t have menu equivalents, but as it turns out, most things that I thought were completely without menus or buttons aren’t actually. That is my mistake.

I guess they are kind of scattered, and there isn’t a single menu system that one would know to go to, but many of these functions do actually have menus…

Dynamic context menu add-on in the 3d view is the closest to that. That will be ported to 2.8 later on.
Also the concept of the Favorites menu can help with some cases when a tool is used occasionally.

What I don’t like about Blender and discoverability is the tendency to HIDE functions rather than simply “ghosting” them or disabling them. This results in a constantly shifting UI that is confusing.

People defend it by saying it makes for a less cluttered visual presentation, but IMO that’s BS. It gaslights the user by saying “no, no, that function was never here, you must be imagining things”. It’s unneccesary and confusing.

Interesting. We all have our habits grew up with . Its our place to figure out what habits are abusive and put a stop to them so we do not pass them on to the next generation. Often we do things out of automatic synapses and if we can find a way to make each other aware in a Kind way its helpful. We need to find positive ways to make change. One of the Optimist creed is " to spend so much time on the improvement of your self that you have no time to criticize others. " But on the other had if you see abuse happening to you then you need to confront it or set boundaries. When it comes to Gaslighitng that is a really bad one - It betrays trust and we can not move forward. Only the person doing the gaslighting knows for sure he/she is doing it or not and even then a person might not realize they are doing it because they grew up acting that way and it just happens on autopilot.

Which cases are you thinking of? What you are mentioning used to be the case throughout Blender 2.7x and earlier, where toggling an option would often pop in UI elements.

But we removed most instances of UI elements suddenly hiding/appearing for 2.8x.

So, where are you seeing this?