Thoughts on the 3D Viewport Header

I should start this by saying I DON’T anticipate many people liking many of the following ideas. The mockup below is primarily to start discussion about how things could change for the header.

What don’t I like about it now? It is getting far far far too long. Splitting it into three sections (left, right, and middle) is not helpful in that it just moves some settings further away as your workspace gets wider. It is too wordy - the header should be sparse and succinct. It is also inconsistent on what information the text is trying to convey.

The following shows a bunch of different ideas together:

Obviously the first image shows Object mode, the second is in Edit mode. All items are aligned to the left, none in the middle or at right margin. I’ve added some vertical separators where they might help.

The interaction mode menu now does not show the text of the current mode. But as a trade-off it now has quick buttons. Click the down arrow and you get the full list of course. Initially the icons on the left would just show Object and Edit modes, but go to a different mode during the session and that mode’s icon would be added to the quick mode list.

The next item is what is now the “View” menu. Obviously clicking that arrow shows you the View menu as we now see it. The icon to the left works as a quick toggle to show/hide the Sidebar.

The next item will drop down to show the contents of the “Select” menu. The button beside it just acts a quick button to select all.

You can probably guess the rest. Add, Object, Mesh menus. The “UV” menu has a quick button that calls Unwrap.

The “Vertex”, “Edge” and “Face” menus are combined with the component selection mode buttons.

Yes, probably a bit too succinct for most people, but I thought I’d throw this out there anyway. Sometimes it takes knowing what you don’t like that gets to improvements that you do.

Rinse - repeat:
A customizable panel (that most DCC apps have) would fix everyone’s issue…

De gustibus non est disputandum

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I definitely agree with that. But I think before we get there we need to reduce the size of the pieces that could go there. Otherwise there isn’t much space once you add only what is required and bare minimum. So the above is my attempt at making each part as small as possible.

I guess the alternative is to make the header wrap to multiple lines. But I’d rather avoid that, than do so only because everything is so wordy.