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There's a long thread on the Ayatana mailing list about the upper-left Ubuntu button in the upcoming Ubuntu 11.04. Currently, this button will open Dash. But there are also two shortcuts in the launcher which trigger Dash (Applications / Files Places) which make the Ubuntu button redundant - this lead to some new ideas for the upper-left Ubuntu button behavior.

Unity two sided dock mockup

One very interesting idea was posted by Marc Lajoie and he calls it "two-sided dock". Here's how it's supposed to work in Marc Lajoie own words:

On one side, the application buttons, on the other, the "function" buttons. The Ubuntu button would flip the dock over (perhaps with a pretty revolving animation!).

Of course, if the dock is hidden, the first click will recall it. The second click will flip the dock.

He also adds:

The dock could be recalled immediately when hovering over the button, saving the extra click when using a mouse, so that to get to the "places" side of the dock only one click would be necessary.

To understand exactly how it's supposed to work, check out this functional web mockup.

Mark Shuttleworth seems to like the idea so we might see this in Unity sometime. But for now it's just a mockup!

What's your opinion?

Image credits: Marc Lajoie