[development] the past, present and future of drupal admin
merlin at logrus.com
Wed Jul 26 22:15:09 UTC 2006
Dang, this is a long post. I don't know where to start on it. A lot of
it addresses the work I'm doing right now on the administration pages.
And I know Kristjan isn't suggesting we throw that away, but I'm running
into an issue:
1) Code freeze is in 36 days.
2) Dries and I are the only two people putting code into patches this at
3) I'm in favor of any steps that are steps forward, especially if
they're done in a flexible way so that we can step sideways in another
4) We can argue for days, nay, years about the actual organization. I've
been working on this for so long, though, that I'm beyond being able to
talk about it in the abstract, and need specifics. Keep in mind that I
effectively started working on this back in January, took a long
breather to collect my wits when the criticisms came in, and then
charged into it again on a whim.
5) I'm a burst type of worker. Meaning, I work really well and really
fast while I'm motivated, but once my motivation becomes sapped, I don't
work well or quickly. Yes, it's a personal flaw, and I do try to work on
that, but it is a fact of my existence that must be accepted.
The conversation Kristjan started is a fantastic conversation to begin
sometime in September, when we're talking about the next version. And
don't get me wrong -- Kristjan brings up great points and has a lot of
interesting things to say, and I agree with a lot of them, straight up
-- but the timing on the conversation is a little difficult, at least
for me. The conversation I want to see is -- what needs to be done to
get the improvements we're working on in now.
Well, and this part of the conversation:
Kristjan Jansen wrote:
> Possible improvements (some of them silly ;)
I want to couch this in terms of "what improvements can we have ready by
> -- improve the module intialization and feature discovery flow: tie
> closer module listings, enabling modules and related help/usage
> guide. (do I remember correctly there were once a "help" link on each
> module in module config screen? I am not saying this is the way to go
I'm very much interested in this, and am working hard to have a modules
page redo in by the code freeze. My initial efforts were part of the
opinions -- some people truly adore them, some people are very enh on
them. I also included module grouping, which brought forth a whole range
> -- there used to be links from module settings pages directly to a
> help pages, but now those are gone. why?
Definitely should come back.
> -- for recently enabled modules' menu item add red "new" markings so
> they stick out while browsing the admin pages. It can be problemsome
> though: enabling many modules in the same time takes you to go reddie
> hell. But this is just a suggestion for direction not a concrete
Spiffy idea, and not actually that hard to implement. I'll try to put
this into what I'm working on.
> -- work on integrating search and admin pages so people can rely on
> search for navigating administration. Index help texts, have
> alternative wordings and synonymes and task-centric phrases for menu
> titles and feed that data into a autosuggest search field a la
> Spotlight in OSX Preferences panel
Ambitious. Definitely not likely in the first round, but I can see where
this might be an end goal.
> 6) make module taxonomy http://drupal.org/project/Modules/category
> work closely together with Drupal administration screen structure
People keep suggesting this, but I don't buy it. How one finds modules
isn't the same as how one administrates modules. The module taxonomy,
when I first looked at it, struck me as relatively poor for some of the
administrative organization, and takes a step back from some of the
goals I have, at least, in module administration.
The downside, of course, is I can't really do much work on this until
the administration patch ( http://drupal.org/node/72079 ) is actually
committed. Well, I can, but I feel hesitant to do so.
More information about the development