[IAEP] 2 design proposals: home view, discoverable shortcuts

Jameson Quinn jameson.quinn at gmail.com
Sun Mar 22 18:50:09 EDT 2009

Thanks for the response. A few quibbles below.

On Sun, Mar 22, 2009 at 4:06 PM, Benjamin M. Schwartz <
bmschwar at fas.harvard.edu> wrote:

> Hash: SHA1
> Jameson Quinn wrote:
> > Proposal 1: home view: "Filtered ring w/ side panels"
> >
> >
> http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/User:Homunq/activity_ring_filters_and_sidepanes
> I'm glad that you're thinking about tagging.  For all of our talk about
> tags, we have yet to implement anything like a usable tagging system, and
> without it we have essentially no organizational tools at all.  It should
> be a high priority.  However,...
> I don't like this design, though it does force me to think.  Opinions
> about design are always mostly intuitive, so it's hard to justify any
> particular opinion. However, let me try a few suggestions:
> 1.  Is this really necessary?  The tagging system's purpose is for
> categorizing all Journal entries, as a student easily generates thousands
> of entries.  However, the total number of Activities in existence is
> relatively small (there are what, maybe about 50 that actually run in a
> given build?).  Are we anywhere near the point where students have so many
> Activities installed that the favorite/star system is insufficient?  Does
> such a point even exist?

This design is explicitly breaking that paradigm. Any activity icon in this
design is connected to all instances of that activity; but a single click
will start up an instance. I would even consider allowing two instances of
an activity within a given filtered view, if both are recent enough (less
than twice as old?).

The home view, in my opinion, should becomes more journal-like, while
retaining the ability to launch new activity instances.

> 2.  I find these filters confusing, and I think users would do.  "Star"
> makes sense; it filters the Activity bundles themselves.  "Recent" and
> "Mine" seem to be filters not on the bundles, but on other Journal
> entries.  I think placing them on the Home View, where the only items
> shown are Activities, is tremendously confusing.  Those filters should
> live in the Journal.
> The purpose of the Home view is to allow users to launch new, empty
> Activity instances in a convenient way.  Are you proposing a change in the
> purpose of the Home view, and if so, why is your proposal better than
> simply replacing the home view with the Journal?

Yes, I am. Not a change, an addition; what you mention is still *a* primary
purpose, but not *the* primary purpose. This is the logical conclusion of
"resume by default".

> 3.  Selecting filters by dragging them is unnecessary.  A click should
> suffice.

I did not explain that well, I guess. You select filters with a click; you
can *assign tags* by dragging.

> 4.  There is no provision for filtering by multiple tags, without which
> tagging is a very weak organizational system.

I'd thought about that, but didn't write it up. I would have "add to filter"
(needs better name) in a submenu for the tags.

> 5.  The distinction between "Start tagless" and "Start with current tag"
> seems unnecessary and confusing.  Assigning or removing a tag should be a
> trivial operation.

IMO it should be both trivial, and available from all places where you might
logically want it.

> 6.  The "Leftovers panel" does not seem to add any value.  Instead, we can
> simply grow or shrink the number of items shown on the home view itself,
> changing the ring into a sunflower, or eventually even a grid with
> scrollbars.

It is for ALL activities, to discourage rampant favoritting and allow
drag-and-drop tagging. The idea that it would serve as a spillover for an
overloaded ring is not central. I agree this might be a bridge too far.

> Version: GnuPG v2.0.9 (GNU/Linux)
> fv0AnRreB2pLCgjNU/BmuRghHiljPvGs
> =g5nL
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