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Imported From: http://groups.google.com/group/in-portal-design/browse_thread/thread/427ebddc25b77c7b#

After many tests I've done about content management, I would like to post here my thought about the changes made in v5. I can't say that the mix between folders and content is a good idea, as far as I've tested it.

Ergonomy

Compared to v4, where folders were including contents, the actual way of doing is absolutely ununderstandable for an average user (including me). Actually, a folder can contain only other folders, as the folder itself can be a content... It's not what we are used to see, as all actual users interfaces, from x11 to OsX and Windows, use at least different icons for folders and files. Of course I explain it to new users when they are in training courses,
but it doesn't seems very smart, and the content management looses all it's intuitively.

Impossible to edit a content if we already are inside the folder, as we have lost the "Edit actual category" button. The user need to click and wait for the upper level menu to display, and then click again on the folder name to edit it's content.

The icon used to view directly the content in Browse mode, next to folder name is very cute... and very small (smile) when users need to click on it all day long, it could be interesting to have a reasonable sized icon (or even a real button).

Functions

Compared to v4, we can't choose anymore to display the content in additional places, like we were used to do by using "Category" tab in v4. We can do it putting our hands into theme coding, but this remove a lot of flexibility for end-users, and isn't the goal of a CMS.

Due to folders/content mix, it's impossible to have a content into a subdirectory, without having the sub-directory being himself a new page, and thus a non-desired content (undesired page which can be accessed through navigation bar & drop-down menus).

May I didn't understood everything in the new way of doing, but this prove at least the loss of intuitively, when a 5 years regular user can't achieve his basic needs.

As easier can be the page coding, peoples who'll spent the more time on In-Portal are end-users, and everything should be done to ease their everyday's life, with a less-click-as-possible strategy, if we want to compete with others CMS.

Related Tasks

INP-446 - Getting issue details... STATUS

25 Comments

  1. About "View in Browse Mode" I agree, that it should be made larger or even
    should replace link to page name, which now leads to given page editing
    (page name link would lead to front-end, that's more intuitive).

    Toolbar button "Edit current category" was moved to submenu under "Tools"
    toolbar button to make sure, that toolbar buttons are not wrapped on 2nd
    line for users with lesser screen resolutions. At the development stage of
    5x version there were attempt to remove it, but I insisted, that it's very
    useful button for users and it stayed, but has been moved.

    We still can make one category appear in other categories by using
    "Relations" tab on category editing. Slight change should be made in
    templates (on front-end) to show related categories.

    There is way to tell, that category/page should not be shown in menu, by
    using "Menu Status" radio button on page/category editing. By default all
    new pages are created and displayed in menu, but user can choose that "Menu
    Status" field value upon page creation to archive what he wants. Maybe by
    default we shouldn't show all new pages in menu and let user decide that.

  2. Hi Alexander,

    thank you for your fast reply.

    I agree to avoid the toolbar growth on 2 lines, but all on versions I've
    installed, even if there's a lot of free space between buttons and search
    box, I have 2 lines (see attached file, screenshot taken under 5,0,1).

    Ok about menu status, even if the content page is still reachable by
    entering the directory name...

    I forgot to mention that we have also lost the URL's view in listing mode,
    and this was very usefull for everyday use, to know the page address without
    editing it, and this URL was also the link actually replaced by the tiny
    editing link.

    The "Relation" tab isn't doing the same work as "Category", we had this
    Relation tab in previous versions, and as far as I've understoud, it's still
    working the same way: to suggest other content, not to display the content
    itself somewhere else.

    I still can't find the interest to have a page appearing the same way as
    folder.
    Just imagine a content-only website (like the ones I'm actually doing), I
    finally have many elements appearing exactly the same way, some of them are
    menus, others are content, and there's no way to distinguish them, neither
    impossible to know the final URL... at least we can see in list view if it's
    shown in menu or not, but we don't know more: is it a page, a menu, or just
    a folder to had a directory for the content?
    Before, we just had to write the full path into filename field, now we need
    to create a folder and put the content inside this folder... the result is
    that when you edit a page, you can't know the final path, as it depend on
    parent's folder, whom we don't know the path without editing them... I just
    go crazy !

    It's really boring to seriously use CMS now... and more and more
    complicated, for the same result.

    Phil.

    2010/1/26 Alexander Obuhovich <aik.b...@gmail.com>:

  3. Here is some thoughts about relations.

    In 4.x versions we have Categories and Pages, that resided inside them.
    Categories tab on page editing allowed to show same page in different
    categories. This can be used on templates, that are showing pages, that are
    located inside category. In 5.x version Page and Category terms are united
    into one Section term.

    So to gain Categories tab effect you should edit all sections, that should
    appear in other categories and make one way relation to target section,
    where they should shown. It's a bit reversed process looking back on
    Categories tab, I agree with that. There is no problem with recreating
    Categories tab functionality for sections, because I also thinking, that
    this will more straight forward to migrating (from 4.x) and new users.

    Related to search toolbar buttons in two lines, please specify browser
    version and operation system used. I have witnessed same problem on Linux
    systems (don't have one myself, so I need help here). Also on that
    screenshots all textboxes have grey color instead of white, that's strange.
    Haven't seen such appearance in any windows theme I've used.

    Related to page url.
    In 4.x version there was no real connection of page url and it's location in
    structure, so it seemed, there is no way to locate page in administrative
    console just knowing it's url. The attempt was made to fix this by making
    page url automatically formed based on it's location in "Structure & Data"
    section. By my opinion this is only effective for pages, that are shown in
    menu, because by url it's clear to user from where he has came on this page.

    For other pages, that are not located in menu that's not so good idea I
    agree, but I can't see an easy solution for now. On other hand we could
    allow to place "/" inside Filename field during page editing. When user does
    so it will unlink page's url from it's location in structure. Such page
    editing technique may not be so obvious to user.

    What you think about it? Looking forward for you response, because it looks
    like you have a lot of experience dealing with cms systems and in-portal in
    particular.

    On Tue, Jan 26, 2010 at 3:16 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  4. Hello Phil,

    First of all thanks for your detailed review and notes on 5.x
    interfaces.

    1. I'll reply right away about your last screenshot where the search
    box is wrapped - it's my fault since I haven't thought that text would
    be that longer in non-English installations. I'll be adjusting in
    5.0.3 today and posted a patch for you here - very easy.

    2. Old Categories tab - you can easily place the same Section within
    multiple sections using Relations and I haven't seen too many cases
    when the same page was placed in multiple categories, but I agree with
    Alex that we can recreate old Categories tab (would be called Sections
    nows)

    3. Pages vs. Sections approach, Phil let me ask you a question - how
    would you list/show products or other items on the CMS Page in old In-
    Portal? Now you simply add them in that Section (in Catalog), add
    corresponding Tag that would list the items and you are done. This
    wouldn't be possible in 4.x with Pages since they are the Catalog
    items themselves.

    Cheers!

    On Jan 26, 7:16

  5. Hello guys,

    1. toolbar on 2 lines
    - Alexander, this happens on FF 3,5,7, on W7, and does the same on Vista. I
    can test on OsX, but I think it rely only on browser behavior. Don't be
    afraid of grey boxes, I've setup a grey background by default on my OS to
    save my eyes :D
    - Dmitry, screenshots have been made from a clean english install, not a
    french one, you can see labels

    2. I agree to the fact that it'd be more intuitive and obvious to have a
    Sections tab, instead of something tricky.

    3. Pages vs. Sections approach
    Dmitry, even if the result is the same, this is totally confusing for any
    user to have the same appearence for folders and content. The main idea is
    that In-Portal need to be understoud by everybody, with less knowledge as
    possible. Anybody who use a mouse and a keyboard have at least the knowledge
    of a folder and a file (my mother still doesn't, but it's another problem
    ^-^). Why would we create a new approach, a new way of thinking, when
    everybody have at least this base? I feel myself a bit stupid when I'm
    teaching the new interface and I need to tell users "yes, pages and folders
    have the same appearance". It doesn't seems so hard to change an icon when
    the folder is used as a page content, don't you think so?

    Alexander, about my uses in v4, I was just putting "about/policy" in the
    field "filename" and the path to the content was "
    http://domain.tld/about/policy.html". In this old good time, because page's
    path was also displayed in listing, we had all pages in one directory. We
    could arrange them into subfolders, but anywhere the page was, just a quick
    look at the path told us were was appearing this page.

    Dmitry, tell me how you can do actually to quickly know the complete path to
    a given page, provinding that the page is in a subfolder?

    For example, one of my customers, who have a merchant website (
    http://www.freshheure.fr) have 97 content pages for... SEO purposes ! Don't
    just  think about pages displaying, think about search engines optimization
    too.

    Finally, about my experience in CMS and In-Portal, it's more than 5y (now 6)
    I'm using In-Portal, and I have frequent look at competitors (Magento,
    Prestashop, OsCommerce). I'm working and doing support indifferently on
    Windows all versions, Mac Os and I use Linux. That's why is focus on
    efficient things, and with all the work achieved for In-Portal being what it
    is, it's sad to need learning a programmer aproach. Mac OsX is a good
    example: it's doing exactly the same things as Windows, but have been always
    more intuitive and easy to use, even if the goal was the same: handle files
    and folder, and display a mouse pointer :)

    Phil.

    2010/1/26 Dmitry A. <dandre...@gmail.com>

  6. About icons we already have:

       - yellow folder for page (created by user) in menu
       - yellow grayed out folder for page (created by user) not in menu
       - red folder for page (created by system) in menu
       - red grayed out folder for page (created by system) not in menu
       - yellow folder with green question mark for pending category added via
       front-end
       - yellow folder with red cross for disabled category added via front-end

    When page doesn't contain any sub-pages, then it should be marked with file
    icon (same color states)? And entering inside file to create sub-page
    doesn't seem to intuitive. I'm not a designer, but if we stick with 4 new
    icon approach, then we need to imagine some new icons here.

    On Tue, Jan 26, 2010 at 7:40 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  7. About graphical ideas, maybe an overlay on standard icon, like a small
    notepad, or even the background of the line, could be changed when
    something is entered into Description field, in order to see quickly
    where we have content.
    The idea is to recognize a content vs. a folder.

    I've also proposed, few monthes ago, to make the "Description" and
    "Short description" fields working the following way:
      - if a text is entered directly into the cell, the system will
    interpret line breaks as <br> and thus display it correctly
      - if we click on a surrounding link "Advanced editing", FCK editor
    will be loaded AT THE SAME PLACE (and the editor will load again
    everytime we edit the content)

    Yes, I've just described how Gmail is working with e-mails edition,
    and this approach seems to be the best for content:
      - if we want the content to be displayed according to the theme's
    CSS, we just enter text.
      - If we need to add photos, links, and so on, we switch to advanced
    edition mode (switch=less change as possible in the interface)
      - for next editing, the last used mode (text or html) will be used

    I also propose to restore the "path" column in list view, and as
    before, it could be a link for text editing.

    Phil.

  8. Phil,

    Thank you very much for your feedback!

    First, let me explain the thinking behind new folders (sections).  For
    many years we had been receiving complaints from web customers about
    how confusing the old catalog was (both from the point of view of
    interfaces and logic of separate pages and content). I personally had
    to explain this to dozens of people who just weren't getting it. I
    have thought about it for years and realized that most users actually
    think of sections (pages) of a website as a tree-like structure
    (hence, folders). The old approach wasn't making sense to most
    people.  I found that most were expecting to see same structure
    (navigation) on their website as the folders on the backend.  The only
    difference in this approach is that every folder also has associated
    built-in content blocks but essentially folders and pages on the site
    is same thing in people's minds (they represent a tree-like structure)

    I was afraid that it will be confusing to current In-Portal users.
    After all, we have been using it for years and it is a major direction
    change. I really hope it is for the best.  I actually wrote about this
    in the FAQs:

    What are Sections? What can I do with them?
    You can think of Sections as Folders on your computer. Sections are
    used to organize data and content of your website but they also act as
    pages of your website. For example, you may have a section called

  9. Hi everyone,

    Phil, I don't think Andrew meant to say that you don't have a point.
    We just thought about this very long and really should have more
    opinions on this before decide to change something in the interfaces
    again. I hope you agree with me here?!

    Anyways, let's talk about all other things you have pointed out:

    1. You wanted to have Sections for tab with functionality when you are
    editing a Section. Would you please list how you think it should
    work / do so we have clear understanding.

    2. I'll be taking care of "wrapped Search" element in Admin grid (In-
    Portal 5.0.3) - thanks for pointing it out!

    I think we had some other things - would you outline them again
    please!.

    Cheers!

    DA.

  10. Hello guys,

    Andrew, the actual folder approach is good, so good that I'm confused
    when it doesn't act like my favorite OS :) In fact, the only missing
    thing is identifying an item containing text with a different design,
    such as described before (icon with a notepad, or line background
    color change). Doing so, it will perfectly reflect our everyday use
    and let us see quickly what we have into the current folder.

    Dmitry:

    1. the section tab would be used to display the product in other
    place, and would act like products categories does. I agree this won't
    be for everyday use, but it can be used for example to display
    specific terms or annoucement in many places on the website, just
    editing on page.

    2. ok.

    3. I was also talking about the display in listing of page path, and
    as before, clicking on the path would lead to page editing. Sounds
    intuitive for me, don't you think so?

    4. Clicking on the page name actually edit the page; this is also not
    very intuitive, as we all are used to click on a folder to go into
    submenu. Actually we need to click in left menu to go inside the
    folder, no other way. In everyday use, we are more likely to navigate
    into folders and subfolders than changing their properties, so I
    suggest to edit the page by using Edit button or by clicking twice
    inside the line, to keep the page name as a link to enter the folder,
    and tp keep page path as a link to enter the editing mode.

    5. I was also suggesting a text edit mode, with could be very usefull
    for editing text products: text entered in description box would
    display with it's line breaks (actually it just interpret HTML), and
    when clicking on "advanced edition", we swith to fck editor, in the
    same place. To have a clear understanding, I just ask to do the same
    as gmail does for managing e-mails.

    Phil.

    2010/1/28 Dmitry A. <dandre...@gmail.com>:

  11. 0 - so new notepad icon (or some other row background color) will be
    present, when page contains at least one filled (with data) block. In case
    all page content blocks are empty or doesn't exist at all, then we will
    display icon as now.

    3 - this could be confusing, especially in "Show All", where path to page is
    shown and there will be one more field then? Will look good on "Show
    Structure" view, where are no path displayed. This would be really visible
    then super small shortcut icon near page name.

    4 - completely agree with that, exactly my thoughts.

    On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 1:34 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  12. 0. sounds great,  and I hope this will give a better intuitive interface usage

    3. I forgot to precise my thought: it's just the "path" column which
    is missing in structure, while we have this column available in "show
    all". Could it be possible to have this column in Column picker pop-up
    when we are in structure mode?

    3.1 In "Show all" mode, the column named "path" doesn't display the
    real path, but rather the names of all parents folder, and not their
    real filename. It's still impossible to know the exact path to of an
    element (again, when we do SEO, we add keywords in path, then the path
    isn't at all like the foder name)

    3.2 what do you think about this idea: transform the top title (with
    blue background, on top of icons) to make each element of the title
    clickable, to access directly the clicked folder, and of course
    displaying the real path, and not folder name?

    Phil.

    2010/1/29 Alexander Obuhovich <aik.b...@gmail.com>:

  13. 3 - path in "Show All" is not page path, but path to parent page (category),
    where this page resides.

    3.2 - each element is already clickable and goes to list of pages inside
    clicked page.

    On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 4:07 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  14. 3. ok, but then where can we see and check the full real path of an item?

    3.2 sorry, I was in the phone when I wrote my reply ^-^

    2010/1/29 Alexander Obuhovich <aik.b...@gmail.com>:

  15. 3 - nowhere in administrative console, because it has no functional purpose
    there, maybe only as link on that small shortcut icon. If we will show it in
    "Show Structure" view as you propose, then all except of last component
    (components are separated by "/") will be the same, because it's path to
    current category/page and only last component will be different. This field
    really makes sense in "Show All" view, where all pages are mixed together no
    matter of they origin.

    On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 4:30 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  16. Hi guys,

    These are my responses:

    0 - so new notepad icon (or some other row background color) will be
    present, when page contains at least one filled (with data) block. In
    case
    all page content blocks are empty or doesn't exist at all, then we
    will
    display icon as now.

    A: Can't really visualize this... Phil / Alex are you able to provide
    some screenshot?

    1. Sections tab - Phil you are referring to the Product, but we have
    that for Catalog Items already. I thought we are talking about
    Sections tab for the actual Section. By the way it was never there.

    This is what we have in "Section tabs" in default install (when adding/
    editing section):

    - General
    - Properties
    - Relations
    - Related Searches
    - Images
    - Permissions
    - Custom

    Can you please clarify?

    2. Wrapping Issue for Search task is created.

    INP-446 - Getting issue details... STATUS

    -

    INP-446 - Getting issue details... STATUS


    3. I think we can add fields to Column picker (not on grid by default)
    that will show:

    - in Structure Mode - last part of the URL - basically filename with
    mouse over absolute URL on the site?
    - in Show All Mode - all parts of the URL excluding Domain and mouse
    over absolute URL on the site?

    Alex what you think it's possible?

    4. Agree, but Andrew is against it - we need to convince him. We can
    add some other shortcut to Edit the Section/Item - what you think.

    5. Phil, can you explain again plz with some examples. I am having a
    hard time visualizing your thoughts.

    Cheers!

    DA.

  17. 0 - can't create a screenshot, since such functionality isn't even created
    3 - everything is possible
    5 - no need to visualize, it's exactly like gmail editor; main idea is that
    you don't see <br/> while viewing textarea, but they exist for fckeditor and
    anyone else, who is using this field's value.

  18. 0. please see attached file and give me your comments.

    5. thanks Alexander to have explained better than me :-)

    2010/1/29 Alexander Obuhovich <aik.b...@gmail.com>:

  19. Hello back,

    I forgot something important about menus and content.

    Folders can hold content, but even if it's just a folder, it's still
    possible to land on an empty page, by clicking on the folder name in
    the dynamic menu.

    To avoid this problem (which leads me to simply remove all dynamic
    menus from new websites), I'd suggest to link the "content detection"
    described before with a "clickable menu option": if a menu hold
    content, it's possible to click on it, if it doesn't hold anything
    else than sub-folders then it just display submenu, but it won't be
    clickable.

    I hope I made myself clear.

    About the "full path" we talked about, it's a matter of SEO: when a
    serious user want to optimize his website, he needs to add keywords in
    path, and thus, it become a nightmare if we need to remember all
    parent keywords.

    Theses 2 demands are based on my experience with customers, and I bet
    I won't be the only one to ask about this.

    Phil.

  20. About "clickable menu option":

    There is "Points to Section" field, that allows you to specify any other
    section. This is especially useful in menus, when instead of opening empty
    page you want to open one of it's subpages instead.

  21. Hi Phil,

    About Menu part, I are you talking about making Folder icon on the LEFT
    tree not-clickable if there are NO sub-sections or I am missing something?

    Thanks.

    DA.

  22. Hi Dmitry,

    sorry I wasn't clear enought, I was talking about front-end menu.

    Phil.

    2010/2/4 Dmitry V. Andrejev <dandre...@gmail.com>:

  23. I also understand that as front-end menu issue (see my previous post about
    that).

    On Thu, Feb 4, 2010 at 6:42 PM, Phil ..:: domicilis.biz ::.. <

  24. Thanks for clarification, Phil.

    I don't think we should worry about much. As Alex pointed out you can
    "Point it" to any other section or completely exclude from the list if I
    am not mistaken.

    Thanks.

  25. In fact, the only missing thing is identifying an item containing text with a different design, such as described before (icon with a notepad, or line background color change). Doing so, it will perfectly reflect our everyday use and let us see quickly what we have into the current folder. 

    I've created separate discussion about this at [cms] Page search by content [5.3.0-B1].

    The icon used to view directly the content in Browse mode, next to folder name is very cute... and very small (smile) when users need to click on it all day long, it could be interesting to have a reasonable sized icon (or even a real button).

     

    Clicking on the page name actually edit the page; this is also not very intuitive, as we all are used to click on a folder to go into submenu. Actually we need to click in left menu to go inside the 
    folder, no other way. In everyday use, we are more likely to navigate into folders and subfolders than changing their properties, so I suggest to edit the page by using Edit button or by clicking twice 
    inside the line, to keep the page name as a link to enter the folder, and to keep page path as a link to enter the editing mode. 

    I've created separate discussion about this at [cms] Navigation improvement in "Website & Content > Structure & Data" section [5.3.0-B1]