Preference changes may be simplified and made more intuitive by offering MiniPref selector windows that would be always displayed.
The user's choice of a "MiniPref" window or selector could be displayed at all times (not buried under numerous clicks), making commonly-changed Preferences more available and obvious and with less "Learning Curve" for the new user. This small window might be placed (floated) by the user over an unused area, perhaps over the Compass Control Bar or Toolbar if space does not allow embedding, or even over a corner of the map itself as is done now with the (optional) "Alt. Edition" selector in the lower left corner of the map. The functionality in a MiniPref would be identical to a few of the entries in the full Preference window, but would not be hidden from view, thus would not require multiple clicks to see or change the setting.
Example: The selector to change compass bearings between True, Magnetic or Grid is now well-hidden and not obvious at all to the new user, and requires six clicks (count 'em!). The MiniPref would show only the Bearing/ "True" selector and would have the same functionality as now in the full Coordinate Preference window.
This suggestion is closely related to this forum's "Need to move "manage project" to the toolbar". How about having a "MiniProjects" list (i.e. same function as Available Projects) in a (floatable) "Open Projects" button, perhaps circumventing Ed's concern about embedding space in the toolbar.