[Python-Dev] [python-committers] PEP 595: Improving bugs.python.org

Ezio Melotti ezio.melotti at gmail.com
Fri May 24 16:48:33 EDT 2019

On Fri, May 24, 2019, 20:23 Gregory P. Smith <greg at krypto.org> wrote:

> -cc: committers to avoid crossposting.

+1 (I wanted to include committers, since the announcement about PEP 581
was posted there too, but it's better to keep the discussion here)

> I have feedback for roundup as experienced on BPO that should be
> represented within PEP 595 if we are going to have a summary of "improving
> roundup for BPO" captured in a PEP (presumably already rejected given 581?
> But good to have documented regardless so _thank you_ for doing this
> writeup even though I realize our plan of record may be demoralizing for
> you).

We would like people to re-evaluate the decision, but if that doesn't
happen I think the PEP is still useful, since it provides a fair view of
Roundup capabilities and discusses things that we will have to take into
account if we proceed with the migration -- that's why we decided to go
ahead and write the PEP.

> > **Flexible UI.**  While Roundup UI might look dated, it is convenient
> and flexible.
> I wholly disagree with this statement.

> The BPO roundup UI drives me nuts. every. single. time. I have to use it.
> It is not optimized for common workflows users actually need to accomplish
> when using a bug tracker.  Two example usability issues (of many): Users
> can't read the latest update to a bug of length because it is hidden within
> the *middle* of the scrolling region, they must hunt for it.

This came up in the past, and two solutions have been proposed already:
1) keyboard shortcuts have been added in the issue page to quickly jump to
the first/previous/next/last message and to the response box [0].  They
support both mnemonic (f/p/n/l/r) and vim-style (h/k/j/l/i) combinations.
You can find a summary table in the left sidebar of the issue page, under
help -> keyboard shortcuts.
2) a patch to collapse the history by default (so that the last message was
at the end of the page) was proposed and merged [1], but it was reverted
after a few days because some devs wanted direct access to the history
without having to do an extra click every time to expand it.

After reading, the text box to add to the discussion is oddly located near
> the *top* of the scrolling region so that a user cannot see context of a
> bug discussion they are responding to as they type.

This has also been discussed and different people had different opinion.
Some suggested to reverse the order of the messages so that the last
message is at the top near the reply box (like Twitter does), but other
said it's unnatural to read.  Some suggested to put the reply box at the
bottom; however if the other fields are left at the top you would have to
go back up to set them, and if they are moved down you won't easily see
them at the top when you open an existing issue.  Another solution is
duplicating the fields and response box at the top and bottom.

What I mean with *flexible* when I wrote the PEP, is that, unlike GitHub
(where they decide), we can customize bpo however we want (as long as we
agree on what we want -- we could even have per-user settings if we really
want to :)

I think I last heard discussion on the position of the response box in 2011
(when shortcuts and history collapsing were discussed).  Maybe people
didn't care enough about it so they didn't bother bringing it up or they
didn't know it could be changed.  If people do speak up, we can change

  I file things like this under "User experience design is needed for the
> common workflows of all classes of users".
> Roundup needs a modern responsive web interface, not GET/POST request
> based interface seen on BPO.  As a result of that, roundup *feels* like
> is belongs in the Pre-2004 era interface wise by being web form and full
> page reload server for everything. A responsive modern "async javascript
> requests happen in the background of the UI" system that we all expect of
> any web UI is needed. Not just tweaking the existing thing to have a mobile
> friendly version of the web form. This includes persistent connections so
> that updates to an issue show up live as they happen instead of getting an
> error message "someone/something else has updated this issue since you
> started typing, the action you wanted to take such as submitting that
> comment or editing that field is now invalid and cannot be completed
> without a lot of manual work figuring out what happened, cut and pasting,
> and fixing things up on the you the users part".

This is a good point and I think it can be done now that Roundup has a REST

> I'm not going to try proposing a PR to this PEP encapsulating that, I'll
> leave that up to anyone willing to wrangle such a PEP.  The list archive
> has it regardless now. :)

Thanks a lot for the feedback, I'll update the PEP once I get back to a PC
(using mobile now).

Best Regards,
Ezio Melotti


> -Greg
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