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Mamba

Moderator
Posted on: 2010/5/31 20:12
Mamba
Mamba (Show more)
Moderator
Posts: 11171
Since: 2004/4/23
#1

XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

As I've mentioned in this thread, I am in process of testing several modules for the "Personal Pack", and after testing many of them, what it's striking is the lack of consistency of module Admin GUI.

All the icons are different, and the "look & feel" is also different between many of the modules. As a result, the user is wasting too much time on learning them individually, and thus being less productive.

So we'll need to:

1) come up with the standard icon set for the modules, similar to those in this thread:

- Resized Image edit
- Resized Image delete
- Resized Image add
- Resized Image next
- Resized Image previous
- Resized Image email
- Resized Image pdf
where we have a clear definition for the icon (e.g. Edit), and a standard icon for that action.

XOOPS 2.5.0 will have such a set of standard icons (based on Crystal icons), but it would be good to define it already now, and update the modules for the Personal Pack, so they are consistent. Please follow the discussion on Icons in the above thread.

2) come up with a "XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines" defining a standard "look and feel" for the modules GUI. Most of them are looking way too different from each other, and to achieve the same result (e.g. create a Category), there are different ways to get there. This is too confusing

So I would like to start this new thread on "XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines" :

- What are the "state of the Art" Admin GUI for modules in the world?
- What are the "Best in class" examples within XOOPS Modules?
- What are the simplest ways for the user to "get the work done"?
- How to make it as easy as possible for the user?

How could we make some "module Admin GUI components" or libraries, that could be used to easily create new modules, or updating existing modules, and have a consistent Admin GUI across all of them?
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luciorota

Module Developer
Posted on: 2010/5/31 20:30
luciorota
luciorota (Show more)
Module Developer
Posts: 210
Since: 2007/4/20
#2

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

Good thread... we need it

an so... let's work on it!
some ideas for "module Admin GUI components" or libraries?
Rota Lucio
lucio.rota@gmail.com;
mobile: +39 338 9966321

Mamba

Moderator
Posted on: 2010/5/31 20:36
Mamba
Mamba (Show more)
Moderator
Posts: 11171
Since: 2004/4/23
#3

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

From the "look and feel" I liked the ones from:

- AdsLight
- TDM modules
- the new modules from BITC3R0

What are other good examples of something that is visually appealing, consistent, and simple?
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Mamba

Moderator
Posted on: 2010/5/31 20:45
Mamba
Mamba (Show more)
Moderator
Posts: 11171
Since: 2004/4/23
#4

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

Quote:
some ideas for "module Admin GUI components" or libraries?


I am looking for ways to be able to add things to the module in a simpler way. A good way is the comment system created by Culex. You add few files, and you have a Comment system in your module.

The same principle could be for module GUI - you add few files and you have a nice graphical GUI that is standard across all XOOPS modules.

Right now it seems that majority of it is hard-coded into into each individual modules, so there is not much "reuse" across modules, unless you want to tear apart a module, copy and paste relevant code and recreate it in your module, again hard-coded.

But before we go there, let's define what a good Admin GUI is, so at least we have some graphical standards
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luciorota

Module Developer
Posted on: 2010/5/31 20:50
luciorota
luciorota (Show more)
Module Developer
Posts: 210
Since: 2007/4/20
#5

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

I too...
A Xoops icons system should have multi language support... for accessibility it should render an html tag like
<img src="ICON_URL" alt="ICON_TEXT" title="..." lang="..." dir="..." /> ...


Rota Lucio
lucio.rota@gmail.com;
mobile: +39 338 9966321

luciorota

Module Developer
Posted on: 2010/5/31 21:28
luciorota
luciorota (Show more)
Module Developer
Posts: 210
Since: 2007/4/20
#6

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

we can improve XoopsSystemGui class, with some methods...

addIcon('icon name', ICON URL, ICON_DECSRIPTION, ICON_SIZE...)
renderIcon('icon name')
srcIcon('...')
...

sir Trabis on 2009-09-13 is the last who commits on this class... his wisdom could be useful
Rota Lucio
lucio.rota@gmail.com;
mobile: +39 338 9966321

vamptrix

Theme Designer
Posted on: 2010/6/1 7:10
vamptrix
vamptrix (Show more)
Theme Designer
Posts: 424
Since: 2008/5/3 1
#7

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

I'd prefer if we'd used the Silk icons from FamFamFam. They look awesome, are free and there are 1000 icons - more than enough.

http://www.famfamfam.com/archive/silk-icons-thats-your-lot/
I used to use this account, but no longer.

Mamba

Moderator
Posted on: 2010/6/1 7:44
Mamba
Mamba (Show more)
Moderator
Posts: 11171
Since: 2004/4/23
#8

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

The problem is that they are only in 16x16 size.

Crystal Icons have several different sizes.

But I hope, we'll evolve to a system where the icons will be stored centrally and each module will get them from there, and the user will be able to define in Preferences which set he wants to use: Crystal, FamFamFam, or yet something custom.

The key is that once the user selects the icon set, he'll have all modules using this particular set, and thus having a consistent look and feel. Currently, each module is pretty much using own set of icons.

Add to it a theme switch mechanism for Admin/Modules like the one ThemeRoller from jQueryUI , and then we have a very nice solution for our users.
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vamptrix

Theme Designer
Posted on: 2010/6/1 11:22
vamptrix
vamptrix (Show more)
Theme Designer
Posts: 424
Since: 2008/5/3 1
#9

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

Very nice indeed - looks promising, but a lot of modules should get an update for it, but it's indeed very interesting..
I used to use this account, but no longer.

mboyden

Moderator
Posted on: 2010/6/1 14:49
mboyden
mboyden (Show more)
Moderator
Posts: 484
Since: 2005/3/9 1
#10

Re: XOOPS Module Admin GUI Guidelines

Yes, having a common methodology for administration would be great. There was a push for this some time back and a lot of the authors jumped on board with the tabs concept. However, we kinda moved away from it. We also started a Module Quality Team awhile back that rated modules on various things such as this as well as code (such as putting HTML into the functional layer, a no-no that still is done too much IMHO).

Maybe a revival of that along with the updated repository that is moving forward.

Personally, I started using Crystal Icons about 18 months ago and all deployed modules on the user side use a consistent set of these since then for all my installations. It could help all our users to do that. The next question becomes which size or having a configuration option that allows the user to choose, but the icons don't all exist at all sizes either.

But, it's the right thing for us to do -- to adopt a standard set of icons and use them throughout our modules and core.
Pessimists see difficulty in opportunity; Optimists see opportunity in difficulty. --W Churchill

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