If you can summarize your thoughts about the UI in a bulleted list and
just send it out would be better.
Ok, here goes:
* The context sensitive search and great and intuitive but it may also be useful to have a global
search that can return results from more than one context. Say I want to find all records that
relate to "ryan", I could perform a global search on this term and get results from user
accounts, automounts, groups, HBACs, etc. all on the same page Right now, I'd have to search for
"ryan" several times on several pages, making note of search results from each page to
keep track of all of it.
* The button labels are logical to me but perhaps "View" or "Show" are better labels for
the current "Retrieve" button, although this is entirely minor and it is certainly not a problem to
understand the functionality of the button as-is. Consider this mostly irrelevant.
* I like the double-click to "Retrieve" functionality. It's minor but helps
reduce the amount of mouse movement necessary to view a record in detail and makes the UI
* When viewing a record, the "Close" button is on the far right and the "Update" and "Delete" buttons are on
the left. I like how that keeps the action buttons separate from the non-action buttons. However, in the "Update" page, the
"Cancel" button is on the left and the "Update" button is on the right. It's just a minor layout thing, but keeping the
action and non-action buttons on the same side for every page would be more consistent. I found my mouse going to the wrong side sometimes
as a result of this, depending on whether I was viewing or updating data.
* Sorting by column is a good must-have feature for when looking at a lot of records. Can
we expect this functionality to be extended to all columns that will eventually be
displayed? It appears right now that more columns will be used in the future to display
more information about each record without having to "retrieve" it and thus
extending the column sorting to all columns would be useful.
* I don't mind the switching between list and view modes as it currently is but
I could potentially be faster to navigate the records by having both list and
view visible at the same time. You could just perform a single click on the
list to update the view with whatever record was clicked on. I don't know if
this would make the best use of screen real-estate or not and I don't really
have a strong opinion on it either way right now.
* If the separate of list/view model is maintained, all the empty white space
currently on the view/update pages could be used to display context-sensitive
help and detailed descriptions of each field. This would not only help
administrators determine the correct fields in which to enter the necessary
details, but also provide information on the expected format of the input or
even a list of valid inputs for fields where the input is only going to be one
of several possible values. Right now, I'm finding myself having to look up the
Administration guide a bunch to remember exactly what each field represents and
what to enter into that field to produce my desired end result. Of course, some
fields are obvious simply by their label, but not all of them currently are.
I applaud the overall effort thus far but I fear I'm the wrong person to be
asking for HCI/UI feedback so hopefully more people are sending their ideas,
suggestions and feedback as well!
Thank you again for you help and interest.
No problem ;)
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