T3UXW09 Status Update
November 17, 2009
Author: ben van 't ende
We are kind of halfway through the User eXperience Week and we would like to show of what we did in our castle until now.
We are almost halfway the User eXperience Week. This morning the teams met and showed of there progress on the beamer. On of the 'greatest' achievements was the naked skin by team 3. Team 3 is deconstructing TYPO3 and building an API that will allow easy development of new skins. A huge job is analysing all stylesheets and getting them into 2 files. One visual and one structural stylesheet that in the end will be merged by minifying. This will ease the creation of other skins because we have a clear separation between structure and layout. This is done by team 3. Another interesting thing here is that sprites will be generated automagically from a folder with images and all icons will be a background image. This will be a huge speed improvement. An overall thing we are doing currently is killing redundant features and superfluous icons. The backend for TYPO3 4.4 will look a lot cleaner. First steps for a new design for the backend of TYPO3 4.4 are already taken. More on this later, but we are definitely heading in a good direction. Every team is also picking up bugs from the Forge issue tracker (http://forge.typo3.org/projects/hci/issues)
Team 1 is working on a grid page module that will reflect the actual layout of the page in the frontend. The idea is to introduce a new record type that holds the information about a grid that represents the structure of the page. The record can be attached to a certain page and can be inherited by all subpages of that page. We already witnessed a proof of concept where you are able to upload an image of the design and can design the grid by dragging lines to create the grid with Ext JS in an overlay over the image. The team is also restructuring the backend forms for logic and will also compact the forms so not every input field is on a new line. For date fields and other input fields the optional checkboxes will be placed inside the input field. The date will be inserted on click.
Team 2 is working on the new Introduction Package that should enable first time users to easily try out features of TYPO3. The Introduction Package can be installed as a fourth step in the 1-2-3 installer. Lots will be configured automagically and the user only needs to supply a password that is checked for strength. The challenge in the design for this package is to make it nice enough to represent TYPO3 well, but also urges the user to replace it with another design so we will not have to much of these introduction websites around.
Team 4 is redoing the pagetree in Ext JS. The goal is to have a flexible pagetree object that can be used all over TYPO3. There are around 15 trees at the moment that can all be replaced with this tree API. Functionalities will comprise drag and drop, easily add and remove pages from the tree etc. For instance this can also be implemented later on in DAM. They will also remove all frames, so more things will be possible like collapsing the module column. Search is also one of the topics that has attention. The search that is currently available in the top right of the backend will be extended and will feature advanced search tags like "#user:bob" or "#news:TYPO3". The results will be shown in categories like user, content and templates. This effort is done together with team 1. The filter option that is currently nearly useless will have a complete new functionality. The administrator can set up which fields will be filtered. By default the pagetitle, navigation title, subtitle and page id will be include in the filter. Filtering by a keyword will only show the relevant pages.
Team 5's main task is to create a global TYPO3 Ext JS skinning module. For instance the new recycler is in the default Ext JS skin which totally does not match TYPO3's skin. The team will also ensure the buttons in the backend will again look like buttons instead of input fields. The dialogs that are also Ext JS will be adapted to the TYPO3 skin as well. One exiting thing is that the tabs in the backend are also Ext JS-ed. The results of that can be called quite impressive.
Quote Jens: I am very excited that everything went so well. We are very productive. The picture of the event we had in mind came true. The concept of the TYPO3 code sprint works very well.