[This perhaps belongs in Illuminati.]
I've now downloaded the beta version 188.8.131.52.3609.x86 and implemented the floating toolbar to launch about 15 programs using the hotkey Alt+L. (I am still on Vista Home Premium.) Some as-yet-unsystematic entries in the toolbar are:
&V. New Menu, within which is the item &B. Defraggler
It all works very nicely in the main, and is certainly enough for what I want, but there are indeed some problems emerging. Here is is my amateur-level account of the situation.
What is STATE=floatactive doing in this beta version that is different from STATE=float? The command STATE=float has changed its behaviour, and is now sufficient to give the focus to the invoked toolbar, so that Alt+L followed by 1 now launches Firefox. I'm afraid I can't determine any differences in behaviour between the toolbar with settings
Toolbar NAME="Launcher" STATE=float TOGGLE
and the toolbar with settings
Toolbar NAME="Launcher" STATE=floatactive TOGGLE
This doesn't worry me, but it may wel muck up applications that others have designed.
The toolbar is mostly not disappearing until after I quit the program that I've launched, whereas it should disappear as soon as the program is launched. At the moment, the toolbar is disappearing immediately after launching Firefox, but remaining until the program is quitted with all the other items. The behaviour has been inconsistent, however, and different buttons have exhibited different behaviour at different times, so I assume that there is some sort of bug. For reference, the commands I am using to launch Firefox (where the toolbar is disappearing immediately) are:
cd C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox
"C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe"
Toolbar NAME=*this CLOSE
and the commands to launch Wordpad (where the toolbar is staying until I quit Wordpad) are
Toolbar NAME=*this CLOSE
This behaviour does not change if I click the item with a mouse instead of using the key that I underlined using the & character. It also does not change if I omit the cd command (which seems redundant, but I copied it automatically from the "Properties", "Start in" entry on the Windows Classic Start Menu"). It also does not change for programs that require User Account Control authorization.
Now for some cosmetics. The look of the toolbar is set by a rather unsystematic combination of settings from "Customize", "Toolbar", and from the settings on each individual command.
A. When there are no icons on the toolbar items, I cannot left-justify the texts on the (vertical) toolbar. They are all centred within the line, which looks bad and makes it hard to read the underlined key that selects the item.
B. If I allow icons, by switching "Image State" to "on" in Customize" Toolbar, I can then select "Show label to the right" in the Command Editor for each item in turn, which left-justifies the text. The problem is, however, that there is far too much vertical spacing, and I can't get nearly enough items on the toolbar - this happens even if I select the empty icon. I'd prefer to have icons, but not if the buttons won't fit.
I remark that this over-supply of vertical spacing occurs to a lesser extent on all the toolbars of Opus, but never as much as here. There is no need for the vertical spacing to be any greater than it is within a lister set to "Details".
C. As abr says, the up and down arrows should certainly allow you to run up and down the toolbar and select that way with the "Enter" button. Similarly, the right arrow should open any menu on the toolbar. That would make its behaviour the same as the Windows Classic Start Menu, and consistent with normal Windows toolbar behaviour.
D. I ran into some inconsistent behaviour when setting up the toolbar's position and so forth. I found that adding the command POS=mouse, and then removing it again, managed to reset things so that I could deal with the toolbar settings as I wanted to, but this seems to be a workaround of some sort of bug.
E. None of the available options make the toolbar very pretty. Even after some judicious colouring and font-choosing, it still has a sort of clunky, DOS-like appearance.