OJS OCS OMP OHS

You are viewing the PKP Support Forum | PKP Home Wiki



3.0a Feedback: Website Settings -> Appearance

OJS development discussion, enhancement requests, third-party patches and plug-ins.

Moderators: jmacgreg, btbell, michael, bdgregg, barbarah, asmecher

Forum rules
Developer Resources:

Documentation: The OJS Technical Reference and the OJS API Reference are both available from the OJS Documentation page.

Git: You can access our public Git Repository here. Comprehensive Git usage instructions are available on the wiki.

Bugzilla: You can access our Bugzilla report tracker here.

Search: You can use our Google Custom Search to search across our main website, the support forum, and Bugzilla.

Questions and discussion are welcome, but if you have a workflow or usability question you should probably post to the OJS Editorial Support and Discussion subforum; if you have a technical support question, try the OJS Technical Support subforum.

3.0a Feedback: Website Settings -> Appearance

Postby satificed » Fri May 16, 2014 11:04 am

I've attached a screenshot of the appearance section of the website settings.

This, as well as in the 2.x releases, is one of the most confusing and contentious sections of the website.

A great deal of the extra work we have is in changing the overall look of the website, since few people are very happy with the out-of-box look of the website.

The main problem, highlighted by the pink box, is that visual/graphic elements aren't clearly distinguished from content fields like this one. What *is* this field? What does it do? How does it impact the visual elements of the website? From the description, it appears that this is a way to add content? Which seems to make things more confusing than it needs to be, since the expectation when one is in the 'appearance' section that it would deal with *only* the graphic/visual elements and not content/text.

As far as I remember, in the 30+ journals that York has, no one has *anything* in this field. While I can see why it matters, in addition to the other ones further down the page, if these were placed somewhere *else* it would reduce confusion and (hopefully) get our users to do some of the theming stuff themselves.

Additionally, and this is more of a feature request, in this section it would be *amazing* to have a color picker of some sort to change the css/visual elements of some really basic things like the colour of links, the colour of text, the colour of the header, etc. Again, something like this would reduce overall load for the admins and encourage the users to do more themselves since this requires far less skill than editing a CSS file.
Attachments
3.0a1_website-settings_appearance.png
3.0a1_website-settings_appearance.png (35.82 KiB) Viewed 859 times
satificed
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Feb 05, 2014 8:00 am

Re: 3.0a Feedback: Website Settings -> Appearance

Postby asmecher » Fri May 16, 2014 12:07 pm

Hi satificed,

OJS 3.0a was an early alpha and now most of a year old, and you might find -- if you don't mind some day-to-day variability as we continue to hack on the code -- that the master branch from github.com gives you a better idea of the state things are in.

The single biggest change between OJS 3.0a and subsequent releases is currently underway as a result of a UI/UX review undertaken by California Digital Library, based on the OJS 3.0 alpha. The resulting design work is being documented at the OJS UI/UX wiki page if you're curious.

Generally speaking, we've started to tinker with allowing the editing of setup fields by dropping an "edit" link directly into the public page, visible to administrative users only, immediately where the content appears.

This specific field permits content to be presented on the journal's homepage, above the announcements area (if one is displayed). I suspect some clearer descriptions in Setup would help clarify. It's not a universally-used field but that is a prominent area for users to want to place content into.

For OJS 2.x, there's a custom theme plugin that integrates a colour picker; it's fairly limited in its repertoire but such a thing could be easily ported over to OJS 3.0.

Thanks for your feedback!

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Public Knowledge Project Team
asmecher
 
Posts: 8869
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 12:56 pm

Re: 3.0a1 Feedback: Website Settings -> Appearance

Postby satificed » Tue May 20, 2014 10:01 am

Hi Alec,

(I just realized I put the wrong version, since I installed 3.0a1. I'm going to move to the github dev. branch right away.

Re: this comment:

This specific field permits content to be presented on the journal's homepage, above the announcements area (if one is displayed). I suspect some clearer descriptions in Setup would help clarify. It's not a universally-used field but that is a prominent area for users to want to place content into.


I understand what the field is *for*, but speaking from an information architecture perspective and as a person who has to deal directly with many users, the inclusion of a text field under the 'Appearance' tab is confusing for most people.

What I'm talking about here is a desire to see only visual elements included under the "Appearance" tab and content related stuff (ie, text) somewhere else.

Or, if these elements need to stay under this tab, to hide these options until a user clicks on them. Or to have a 'basic' and 'advanced' appearance section. One where people can use color pickers to change basic elements like link colors, backgrounds, etc., upload their header/logo/etc images, and move blocks in/out of the sidebars but then users can toggle an 'advanced' option that would reveal these other fields.

Pretty much none of the editors I've worked with know anything about HTML or CSS, which means that they look at this page and pass the work along to us (me) because none of it has any meaning for them.
satificed
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Feb 05, 2014 8:00 am

Re: 3.0a Feedback: Website Settings -> Appearance

Postby asmecher » Wed May 21, 2014 12:45 pm

Hi satificed,

Thanks for the detail -- I see your point.

We'll talk about this during a forthcoming UI/UX meeting, but my sense is that we need to move away from forcing the user to scour setup and intuit the relationships between the various setup fields and the site itself. The setup area is always on the verge of growing to an uncontrollable size, and every feature request risks adding more. If we could instead consider something more like an in-place editor for fields like this one, it would 1) remove it from the setup area, decreasing its size, and 2) make it clear where on the live site that field would appear.

There's already a half-measure in place in releases of OMP -- a button to jump the administrative user from the site to the setup area where that content is entered -- but as this still drops the user into the labyrinthine setup area, it's only a half-measure.

Further feedback is always welcome.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Public Knowledge Project Team
asmecher
 
Posts: 8869
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 12:56 pm


Return to OJS Development

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest