Renaming Activities to View

“Activities” should be renamed to something else, such as “View”, because users new to Linux or even just new to GNOME will have no idea what the “Activities” button actually does until they click it for the first time.
The reason that the Activities button is named “Activities” is because in the original GNOME design, it is the sole way to get to the dock, search, and overview, so it wasn’t an easy naming process. However, in Ubuntu 17.10, because we have Ubuntu Dock, the only thing the “Activities” does is search and overview, and considering that one can search via the “Applications” button, the only thing the “Activities” button does uniquely is the windows overview. Therefore, it should be named “View” or “Overview” OR replaced by an icon that obviously indicates a view. Moreover, because the Ubuntu Dock is just below the “Activities” button, a new user is liable to think that “Activities” is the name of the column – that activities are the applications in the dock.


But is this worth diverging from Gnome?

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Besides there is at least one extension, to rename activities and IMO that’s the purpose of an extension. I’m sure the Ubuntu desktop developers have enough on their hands at this point. Feature Freeze is this week, isn’t it?


Yeah, I think you are right about this. I just use the hide activities button extension :slight_smile:


The problem with that idea is that the new string of text would have to be changed for all the language supported by GNOME Shell… I’m not sure it would be worth the effort.

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I tried getting it renamed last year. But the desktop team made an explicit decision to keep it unchanged:

To @stephen-d-allen and Frederik – the question isn’t whether or not you can use an extension. Of course you can and I do. However, you simply shouldn’t have to install extensions to fix bad design. Extensions should be used only to add new features. A new user should be able to figure out what’s on his/her desktop without documentation or gnome extensions.
The current situation is confusing to new users because, as I stated, “Activities” is an incredibly vague word to use to describe searching and viewing windows. I am probably not the only one who only uses it to search for files and applications. Replacing the word with a search icon or overview icon would dramatically improve the coherence and usability of the Ubuntu-fork of GNOME.

Thanks a lot for the link – it’s great to see what Ubuntu’s official position is. I’m still wondering if there is an improvement we could make. At the very least, inserting an icon to the left of the word “Activities” (there is just enough room for this in the current design). I think the best kind of icon would be one that implies the actual function of activities and therefore, a search icon or view icon. Then, despite the terribly vague word “Activities”, it would at least be more clear to the user what it actually is. What do you think?

Can’t figure you out sometimes, People!
Click on it and learn what it does - NO
read documentations - NO
have an extension to change it - NO
Complain, nitpick again and again - Oh YES!

Sorry, couldn’t help myself. Needed to be the one that saying it – Have a purple elephant there or use an OS that won’t
let you change anything at all. It will save you a lot of worries.