Component Progress Indicators

Jess Mitchell jess at
Fri Sep 5 16:26:10 UTC 2008


We were thinking of families of components, not parents and peers.   
But I think that will get to the same end and you're right, reorderer  
is the parent.

We have two component families right now:  reorderer and inline edit.   
We will certainly take on making their presentation more  
straightforward.  Many apologies for the confusion!


Jess Mitchell
Project Manager / Fluid Project
jess at
/ w / 617.326.7753  / c / 919.599.5378
jabber: jessmitchell at

On Sep 5, 2008, at 11:12 AM, John Norman wrote:

> I got an offlist comment about reorderer which made me revisit the  
> site and I got confused. Nico helped me out. The issue is that  
> components are presented as peers, but (as Nico presented it) the  
> reordered is like a parent (or container component) for two other  
> components - lightbox and layout customiser. So if we are looking at  
> using layout customiser, we are necessarily looking at using  
> Reorderer.
> I had not properly understood this and would suggest that the site  
> presentation of all components as peers does not help discovery of  
> this relationship/dependency. Reusing the lightbox image for the  
> reorderer component at 
>  does not help. A parent component that does not have a UI might be  
> better represented by a snippet of code image.
> Just a suggestion.
> John
> On 5 Sep 2008, at 14:50, Jess Mitchell wrote:
>> John,
>> Thanks so much for your thoughtful email!  This is great feedback  
>> and we're excited to make this new tool better.
>> You have indeed mentioned some of the points that we're working on,  
>> namely: a template for the component pages that will have anchored  
>> sections that clearly match up with the elements in the indicator  
>> and the progress indicator situated within that page -- that should  
>> help with some understandability.  We'll also have the progress  
>> indicators living on that page eventually.
>> But you also bring up some really good points that we need to  
>> address:  namely "completeness" and what it means, explaining  
>> "families" of components like reorderer, and how to represent  
>> features of the components we haven't even thought of adding, but  
>> will be added to a "complete" component?  So, we've got some work  
>> to do on this.
>> We look forward to working with y'all on implementation!  And have  
>> Nico get in touch with us about implementation of the Layout  
>> Customizer.
>> Best,
>> Jess
>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>> Jess Mitchell
>> Project Manager / Fluid Project
>> jess at
>> / w / 617.326.7753  / c / 919.599.5378
>> jabber: jessmitchell at
>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>> On Sep 5, 2008, at 4:41 AM, John Norman wrote:
>>> First I want to say this is a great resource, BUT...
>>> I just had occasion to actually want to *use* a progress indicator.
>>> This is good news, Nico came to me saying he wanted to put the Fluid
>>> Reorderer into the Sakai UX work. So first I went to look at his  
>>> demo
>>> of it working with the Nathan's new skin and Sakai gadgets (I was
>>> worried by the clunky drag and drop I had seen when I last looked).
>>> The experience was good, very familiar and ext-like so I agreed it
>>> might be ready to use. But then I thought, so how finished is it and
>>> what is the likelihood of a big change coming along and disrupting
>>> the  UX project in some way by doing something unexpected or  
>>> unwanted,
>>> or it turning out to have poor performance so we had to pull it back
>>> out until fixed. The progress chart seemed the obvious place to get
>>> answers so I went and looked. I found myself with fewer answers  
>>> than I
>>> expected and thought I should share the experience.
>>> 1. First problem: what component should I be looking at? There  
>>> seemed
>>> to be 2 possibilities Layout Customiser and Reorderer. Nico seemed
>>> pretty confident that he had used the Layout Customiser so that is
>>> what we looked at, but I noted that the page assumed you understood
>>> what each component did - a very brief description for  
>>> disambiguation
>>> purposes in this case would have been useful.
>>> 2. Next problem was; what does "complete" mean. Until the Flash
>>> uploader incident, I would probably not have questioned this and
>>> assumed that "complete" meant feature complete and fully tested for
>>> heavy production load - i.e. 'production ready'. The Flash  
>>> uploader is
>>> "complete" but there is a massive risk associated with the Flash
>>> Player 10 non-functionality that is not mentioned, potentially
>>> allowing me to make a poor production decision, so perhaps  
>>> 'complete'
>>> does not mean 'production ready'. I looked for a definition of
>>> "complete" but didn't readily find one.
>>> 3. Next problem is the elements on the page (like "columns" or
>>> "locked"). I wondered what they meant. There seemed to be a
>>> correlation to the items listed below the colour bar, but all items
>>> linked to a single specification page that did not easily correlate
>>> with the names, i.e. even by reading the specification page I could
>>> not tell the scope of specification that related to the name  
>>> "columns"
>>> and that was marked as complete.
>>> 4. Finally, there was a white item marked "..." and a corresponding
>>> item on the bottom of the list. I didn't know what to make of  
>>> this. I
>>> assumed it meant the spec scope was unfinished and there was an
>>> indefinite amount of unknown work still to be done, so progress  
>>> could
>>> be 80% done or 5% done and there was no way to know when the  
>>> component
>>> might be finished.
>>> So for this single example, the entry turned out to be almost  
>>> totally
>>> useless for *my* purpose, which was to decide if it was safe to
>>> consider using the component in a production environment.
>>> I wrote this down to try to be helpful, not to criticise. I  
>>> appreciate
>>> that it is work in progress and I would like to remind you of the  
>>> good
>>> news - we are thinking we might be ready to put the component into  
>>> our
>>> production code and built it into the UX work. I just thought that I
>>> had an example of the intended use of the page and you should know
>>> that in its current form it turns out to be less useful than it
>>> appeared on the surface when I looked at it for the conference call.
>>> Best, John
>>> On 3 Sep 2008, at 21:00, Jess Mitchell wrote:
>>>> I think these look awesome.  And I think it's meaningful that I've
>>>> been pointing people to this page all day while having  
>>>> conversations
>>>> about components.
>>>> Wonderful work y'all.
>>>> Jess
>>>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>>>> Jess Mitchell
>>>> Project Manager / Fluid Project
>>>> jess at
>>>> / w / 617.326.7753  / c / 919.599.5378
>>>> jabber: jessmitchell at
>>>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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