Reorderer behaviour

Daphne Ogle daphne at
Thu Sep 18 00:31:58 UTC 2008

Good to hear.  We should shoot for doing some testing next iteration.   
In fact, I think we can use the same protocol we used last time  
(although we should confirm with Gary when he's back from vacation) so  
volunteers could start doing testing right away.  Let's confirm the  
relevance of the protocol with Gary and then add it to our wiki page.

Thanks for the update Paul!


On Sep 17, 2008, at 9:37 AM, Paul Zablosky wrote:

> Daphne,
> Now that issue Fluid-1335  (Drop target based on position of pointer  
> instead of avatar) has been resolved (thanks Antranig), I have  
> worked through all the reorderer examples that previously were  
> giving me problems.  They all now feel much smoother now and the  
> targets appear much more where I expect them.   It will be  
> interesting to see what the user tests reveal -- although we won't  
> really have a proper comparison between the old and new behaviours.
> Paul
> Daphne Ogle wrote:
>> Hi Paul,
>> Your experience is similar to what we found in user testing. 
>> .
>> We think the performance was a large issue in the user not being  
>> able to tell where the portlet was going to be dropped.  And it was  
>> a difficult to seperate out intended interaction from the lag and  
>> jerkiness happening (more in Firefox 2 than 3).  The development  
>> team is working hard to make these interactions smoother.  We'll  
>> run another set of user tests once they feel we are ready and we  
>> should be able to get some good data.
>> Thanks for the comments and bringing this up!
>> -Daphne
>>> I have been playing with the reorderer examples on the daily build  
>>> page and getting a feel for the behaviour of the avatars and the  
>>> targets.  The behaviour is not quite what I expect as I move  
>>> things around, and I'm wondering whether I'm taking an  
>>> idiosyncratic view of things.  The problem is that the drop target  
>>> doesn't seem to appear where I expect it to.  I position the  
>>> avatar squarely over where I want to move the element, and yet the  
>>> target is one position off to the left  or right (or above or  
>>> below).   I have to move the avatar farther than (I feel) should  
>>> be necessary to get the target to appear where I want it. It makes  
>>> the whole interaction sort of weirdly sticky for me.  What it  
>>> comes down to is that I feel I should be able to predict where the  
>>> target a irst I thought that this was just a performance issue,  
>>> but now I know what causes it.
>>> Here's the explanation.  What I'm trying to do is position the  
>>> avatar where I want to drop the element, but the target isn't  
>>> following the avatar.  The target follows the pointer.  So with a  
>>> fairly large avatar -- such as a portlet window, or  a multi-line  
>>> list element, it makes a huge difference where I grab the  
>>> element.  If I grab the top edge of the list element, the target  
>>> will appear in relation to the top edge of the avatar.  If I grab  
>>> the bottom edge, the target follows the position of the bottom.
>>> But I never pay attention to where I grab the thing.  My eyes are  
>>> tracking the outline of the avatar, and I sort of expect the  
>>> target to appear where I have the avatar centred -- and that's not  
>>> happening.
>>> So it raises the question in my mind.  Is it just me, or do others  
>>> have the same experience of the movements of the following their  
>>> expectations?
>>> Of course my experience means nothing.  I know that we can only  
>>> settle an issue like this with user testing.  So here's the real  
>>> question: Do users have the idea that they are influencing the  
>>> position of the drop target by the location of the avatar, or do  
>>> they have the feeling they are shoving it around with the pointer,  
>>> while ignoring the outlines of the avatar?  And do we have any  
>>> user testing results or research data (possibly from some outside  
>>> source) that can tell us this?
>>> I spent a little time this afternoon trying to train myself to be  
>>> a better drag-and-dropper, using the four reorderer examples --  
>>> either centring the pointer carefully on the element I'm grabbing,  
>>> or following the pointer image rather than the avatar outline.   
>>> I'm learning, but it doesn't feel quite natural.
>>> Comments?  Am I marching to a completely off-the-beat drummer here?
>> Daphne Ogle
>> Senior Interaction Designer
>> University of California, Berkeley
>> Educational Technology Services
>> daphne at
>> cell (510)847-0308

Daphne Ogle
Senior Interaction Designer
University of California, Berkeley
Educational Technology Services
daphne at
cell (510)847-0308

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