Delete option in Measure context and Edit menus is confusing since it does not delete the measure

• Feb 22, 2020 - 11:03
Reported version
Graphical (UI)
S5 - Suggestion

I find the Delete option in Measure context and Edit menus (with a measure selected) confusing, because it could have one of two potential meanings:

a) delete the selected item, e.g. acceptable if a note is selected, but will not work as expected if a measure is selected and your expectation is to have the measure removed.
b) clear the contents of the selected item, which makes sense for a selected measure or note

The fact that there is a separate measure context menu entry for "Remove Selected Measures", which does what one expects, makes it even more obvious that Delete could be improved on.

My suggestion is to change Delete to Clear in all related places (this is what I have used and can think of)
a) Measure context menu
b) Note context menu
c) Measure context menu
d) Edit menu
to consistently get rid of the confusing "Delete" string.

For (a), (b) and (c) it will clear/empty the value.
For rests:
c) Single quarter selected rest, does not seem to be doing anything
b) Multiple selected rests, will turn them into their larger value (e.g. if you select 2 quarter rests, will turn into a half rest; will turn 4 quarter rests into a whole rest)

For consistency's sake, I would prefer to
a) rather change to Clear everywhere it works, vs
b) only changing it where it is confusing for Measures, and leave on Delete for the rest

Special consideration to Text context menu and Text Box:
Does it make sense to change to clear here? Or
a) change selected Text to Clear (since it still works) but
b) keep Text Box to Delete.
The Text Box could be considered similar to a Measure where both Clear (delete) and Remove (equivalent to "Remove Selected Measures") could be valid options.

Suggested before:


"Delete" on a rest in a voice other than voice 1 does something not typical of notes and rests in MuseScore; it neither "turns it into a rest" ("clear") nor excises it from time ("remove"), but makes it "invisible" in an odd way -- it is "eliminated" as though it were an articulation, ornament, or other optional mark. "Delete" on a rest in voice 1 does nothing, and shouldn't even be offered. This space, as it were, of removal gestures can now be seen to have three elements. New proposed terminologies have to consider all three actions as they apply not only to measures but to notes, rests, and optional marks in all cases.

What is confusing here is to delete notes and remove measures.
Do you want to delete existing notes and call it "Clear"?
I think it makes sense to use the "remove" option to remove measures.

Notice that effacing/eradicating/eliminating a rest in a non-1 voice is unique among all other operations under discussion in that it does not affect the sound or meaning of the music (but might affect its typographic correctness). I frequently eliminate rests in secondary voices in textures/instruments where the formality of "voices" is tenuous and there is an equal rest in voice 1. Maybe this shouldn't be allowed, and you should have to "hide" them (although it makes editing such stuff messy).

Option B:
If we cannot find a string in the Edit menu that will work for all possible objects it may be applicable to (and based on the above it looks like it is going that way), we can leave the Edit menu string on Delete, but change only the Measure context menu Delete to Clear (or even Clear Contents). This would be very frustrating for me (who likes things consistent), since, with a measure selected you would have the following scenario.

  • Edit menu
    • Delete

unchanged, does the same as Clear Contents, and probably not what users of this menu entry would expect

  • Measure context menu
    • Clear Contents
    • Remove Selected Measures

with both of the Measure context menus doing exactly what one would expect them to do based on the label.

I am partial to the more descriptive "Clear Contents" since we no longer have to worry about the string being generic enough to accommodate the objects that did work (e.g. Notes) with Clear.