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David Faught
I wrote:
>It seems to me that just having menus and text entry boxes show
>up on the screen implies that there are modes.

I know that this is not strictly true, but there is a definite divergence between navigating the 3D space and navigating the GUI gunk, which may be in an overlay interactor portal or the Tweak framework.  This is probably going to be an ongoing source of amusement.

>Context menus can be positioned in the middle of the screen,
>being modal while there, and could just disappear if the cursor
>moves away without selecting.

Actually, if I recall correctly, the Wings 3D GUI works like this, and I hated it.  I like the idea of having layers of GUI controls, for example having spelled-out drop-down menus for easy navigation by a casual user and at the same time having simple keystroke functions directly invoking the menu selections for the power user.  I guess that this implies modal text entry.