User Experience/ToDo/Competitor Software
- 1 Intro
- 2 Competitor Software
- 3 Useful Features
- 3.1 Table Styles
- 3.2 Styles & Themes
- 3.3 Side-by-Side Difference between 2 Documents
- 3.4 Context sensitivity
- 3.5 Toolbars and tool dialogs
The aim of this page is to provide an analysis of useful features from competitor software.
- Adobe InDesign CS3
- Adobe Acrobat Professional
- Apple iWorks
- Microsoft Office
- IBM Lotus Symphony
- various web-pages
- specific controls:
- Adobe Type Manager: group fonts
- ... please expand
Virtually every table on the net uses the following specific design:
- header row: a background color is set
- two alternating backgrounds
- usually NO hard-borders, but usually light borders
- highlight current row: interactive programs (aka web) implement this feature, too
- slightly rounded corners: sometimes a pretty cheap but visually pleasing effect
- virtually every web table, including the OOo and Mozilla issue-lists use these web-proven designs.
- Adobe InDesign CS3:
- Writer: implement such a table style (NO issue yet filed)
- Calc: implement a Spreadsheet-Table View, see issue 78181
- including different header style, alternating background for data-rows and highlight current row
- Impress: highlight current row/ current area, see issue 79882
Styles & Themes
- iWork: professional looking styles & themes out of the box
- MS Office 2007: also professional looking styles & themes out of the box
- Using these two products you have to almost struggle to create ugly documents
- No confusion caused by multiple simultaneous pragmas (strong manual editing support vs styles based)
- Themes format styles automatically, which means extremely easy switching of the whole look
- OOo is very poor on this area!
Side-by-Side Difference between 2 Documents
Many web-programs allow displaying side-by-side differences for 2 text-streams.
- compute differences between 2 versions of a document (or even 2 completely different documents)
- choose difference-sensitivity: text-only, other-objects, formats, ...
- display the 2 pages side-by-side, when issue 1598 gets implemented.
- Adobe Acrobat Professional implements this feature
- it does a great job (including +/- formatting), even though pdf is such a poor format when it comes to page structure
- various web-programs/diff's: including mediawiki/wikipedia and many more
- various text-editors
- the BLAST-program: see the ncbi BLAST page
See issue 81526 for further details.
- Two types of controls (toolbar or anything else): fixed, which always have the same options; and dynamic, which, depending on the current context, shows different options (like Symphony's side-panel)
Toolbars and tool dialogs
Inspector (Apple iWork)
Apple's iWork has a concept of "Inspector", which is context sensitive, but with static set of tabs/controls.
So for example you can select one or more graphical shapes (and tex boxes) and set from the inspector their X/Y position on page or their width and height. Also colors for any object (border/fill) can be changed etc.
Contextual Format Bar (Apple iWork)
If more toolbar-like UI is desired, then there's Contextual Format Bar (Quicktime)
Firefox 3's extension manager has a search box, so the user can search and install a extension direct for the program. This is very easy to use and very productive.