[drupal-devel] ShortStat for Drupal

Dries Buytaert dries at buytaert.net
Wed Jan 19 14:44:09 UTC 2005

Bèr Kessels wrote:
> Maybe now, yes. But that does not count for contributions. And worse: it does 
> not count for all those silly things that are still in core from long ago. 
> Just look at the node-submission page: it is messy, and one cannot reaaly 
> change it, at least not in a theme. Those are things I am talking about, when 
> talking about the mess. But theres much more.

The idea that guidelines will help us /fix/ Drupal's existing UIs and 
interaction design is an illusion.  That said, it will help us catch 
obvious violations and will be a tremendous help for many.  It's much 
needed to ensure consistency across modules (especially for contributed 
modules) so +1 on that.

I own two books on website usability, and spent a fair amount of time 
digging usability articles online.  Having read these books and articles 
-- combined with user feedback on drupal.org -- helps me understand and 
pin-points Drupal's usability pains.  I have learned a lot the past two 
years, I have been on a mission to help create usability-awareness and 
last but not least, I have spent a fair amount of time implementing 
usability improvements.  However, it doesn't necessarily empower me to 
take apart the existing UIs and to redesign them.  Often, I had to 
consult Michael Angelas and Kristjan Janssen.

Furthermore, there is _no_ reason not to fix some of the mess in Drupal 
4.6.  The lack of guidelines didn't stop me from improving the 
statistics and throttle module in HEAD, nor did it stop Neil from 
improving the block administration, or Steven from drastically improving 
the search results.

In fact, I doubt that the above improvements (many are all about good 
"interaction design" not "interface design") would automagically get 
dictated by good guidelines.  There is plenty of stuff we can improve 
(eg. menu configuration, node submission form, comment moderation, 
grouping settings) without the need for setting HIGs in stone.  For one, 
nothing stops us from making substantial improvements to the node 
submission page or to better organize the settings pages.  I'm sure HIGs 
will help us refine such improvements.

Dries Buytaert  ::  http://www.buytaert.net/

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