OK, I wanted to include a picture so I just made this into another blog post.
I would like to argue that this is more of a solution for making the app usable when it’s resized to less than normal sizes. If actually having to teach the user that it needs to make the window larger to get the controls he want on screen, then someone has messed up the defaults of the application. As long as it’s initially resized to a good size, it should feel natural to the user instantly if he sees windows grow smaller and then finally disappear when he gradually makes the window smaller.
And another point: have a look at this small krita.
…or even smaller!
Would you agree me with me if I say that in this case, the problem that the interface has just become practically unusable, should take priority over the fact that the user might be a little bit confused about how to get his windows back (although I still thinks it should feel natural if done right)? And instead, it automagically turned into this:
Hope I didn’t create any strawmen here by misunderstanding your arguments, yell back if I did 🙂