[Mailman-Users] [Patch itself]

Bernhard Reiter bernhard at uwm.edu
Wed Jun 16 23:33:16 CEST 1999


First I like to thank your for the answer and the work on mailman 
in general.

On Wed, Jun 16, 1999 at 07:48:17PM +0200, Harald Meland wrote:
> Thanks for the patch -- but, having tried it out, I really liked the
> look&feel of the Details better the way they were.

It is non-standard and I think there are real arguments about
what is better. In short your points don't convince me. :)
You have to think about the most common users of this interface
and not about your preferences, being the author.

I still defend my position that the other way should be default.

>   When specifying an explicit window target for the details links,
>   I'll only get _one_ specific details window (unless I middle-click
>   on a link to tell my Netscape "ignore the window target for this
>   link, but open it in a new window").
>   However, if all links are made to be without window targets, I'll
>   either have to go back and forth between details and the admin page
>   (when left-clicking), or I'll get a total clutter of separate
>   details windows (when middle-clicking).

Jakob Nielson lists opening another browser window in The Top
Ten New Mistakes of Web Design (http://www.useit.com/alertbox/990530.html).

I know that most of his arguments presented there do not fit the case 
of the mailman configuration screen. 
But furthermore some arguments against frames strike the sitiuation.

Users generally don't like to leave one level of navigation.
Frames and Autorasing of windows do this. 
There is a tendency to confuse users and a slowdown.

> As for the "Warning!  Don't change this option here!" part of the
> patch, I think a) the fact it states is pretty obvious, as there is no
> submit button on the page, and b) it adds unwanted visual clutter to
> an otherwise beautiful details page ;)

a) 1) There a forms, where you don't need a submit button to submit the
	information. Pressing enter or return is sufficient.  
	The selectable and changeble dialog indicates that I can 
	change something.

   2) It was not even me, who was surprised by that, but actually other
	users considered that a flaw.

   3) If pressing return there is actually a page loaded and it is
	timeconsuming to find out, that the changes were not made.

b) 1) There is no way of real visual design on webpages. This is a
	common misconception, because all screens and browsers look
	different. (Think webtv, handheld devices or disabled people.)
	So an argument based on visual beauty is hard to make.

> [ All of this should probably be a per-admin configurable option --
>   but we won't have separate admin authentication until after 1.0, so
>   I'd rather leave everything as it is for now. ]
You might want consider putting the patch in the archive with these
mailis to give people the choise of correcting this bug. ;)


Research Assistant, Geog Dept UM-Milwaukee, USA.         (www.uwm.edu/~bernhard)
Funding/Promoting Association for a Free Informational Infrastructure (ffii.org)
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