More help text

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Ned Scott Offline
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Post: #1
I'm setting up some stuff for my parents in their cabin, and an idea hit me.


The problem:
I set up a new profile because I'm in a different location with different file sources (local USB hard drives), etc. After naming my profile this window pops up, but it doesn't say why. I know that it is asking me if I wish to change the default location for the profile's userdata folder, but other people won't know this and just think something went wrong or they might start clicking around and select a weird place to store the data unintentionally.



Possible solution:
Similar to how we have settings help text, I think a good short term improvement would be to have a variable text box for selection windows that are used in different places in the program.

[Image: More_help_text_01.png]



Crude example:

(pretend I edited out "Browse for folder", since that is now redundant)

[Image: More_help_text_02.png]




Thoughts? Good idea? Bad idea?
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Piers Offline
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Post: #2
I think it's a good idea, it certainly makes the user experience more straight forward.

Please read the online manual (wiki) & FAQ (wiki) before posting.

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jjd-uk Online
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Post: #3
Bad idea in my opinion, if something like that is not obvious or intuitive then it's a problem with the design of the UI, we shouldn't need to add more clutter like this. Taking this example what probably should happen is that rather than pop up that "Browse for folder" window straight away we first pop up a message something like:

Code:
The settings for this profile will be stored in "profile userdata location"

Do you wish to change the location of where the profile settings are stored?

Yes - No

Thus the "Browse for folder" only gets popped up when selecting "Yes".
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da-anda Offline
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Post: #4
I agree with jjd-uk - there should be a dialog asking if default location should be used or custom
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Ned Scott Offline
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Post: #5
After I posted I had the same thought about having a dialog box show up first, but honestly I think it could go both ways, and I like the idea of combining both windows. Otherwise it's "describe" then "choose" and you can never see both at the same time. I don't know of many programs except for us that would try to get away with that, and I don't think it's the better design. You're going back and forth between the setting/selection and the help text, like two pages in a book. That seems clunky to me.

Help text can also provide additional information that wouldn't be logical to present in the first dialog box. A perfect example of this is how we currently select video sources to add. A note about how you only see folders, and not files, would help avoid a lot of confusion for new users, and that is a message that would only make sense when selecting the source location.

Another variation of this idea would be making "Browse for folder" two lines and customizable for different situations, so it doesn't have to be a long description, but just a more descriptive title. Sometimes it will still just say "Browse for X", but it can now be longer and more specific, which goes a long way in helping make Kodi set up easier. We could easily make half of the wiki unnecessary with that alone ;)
(This post was last modified: 2015-07-02 18:01 by Ned Scott.)
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natethomas Offline
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Post: #6
Another alternative is to work to remove "Yes/No" questions. As discussed in other UI conversations, it's far better to give users action verbs so they know exactly what they are doing. So in the above example:

PHP Code:
The settings for this profile will be stored in "profile userdata location"

Do you wish to change the location of where the profile settings are stored?

Change Location Don't Change Location 
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Piers Offline
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Post: #7
(2015-07-02 20:31)natethomas Wrote:  Another alternative is to work to remove "Yes/No" questions. As discussed in other UI conversations, it's far better to give users action verbs so they know exactly what they are doing. So in the above example:

PHP Code:
The settings for this profile will be stored in "profile userdata location"

Do you wish to change the location of where the profile settings are stored?

Change Location Don't Change Location 

I'm not liking that idea. I don't see why it's problematic to ask a question and then offer a simple 'Yes' / 'No' answer. In your example, 'Change Location' and 'Don't Change Location' would also work as 'Yes' and 'No' for the question asked.

Please read the online manual (wiki) & FAQ (wiki) before posting.

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natethomas Offline
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Post: #8
It's pretty well known at this point that better UX is to include the action in the dialog button.

http://ux.stackexchange.com/questions/35...ith-a-verb

edit 1: Also, the basis of the above stack exchange discussion: http://www.uxbooth.com/articles/the-gram...ractivity/

edit 2: I think trying to follow the rule that each button has to have a verb might actually be really useful for a lot of our dialogs. It'd force us to narrow down dialogs that are overly complicated, because everything in the dialog would require a clear verb attached to it.
(This post was last modified: 2015-07-03 01:31 by natethomas.)
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Ned Scott Offline
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Post: #9
Another example I had in mind is our virtual keyboard. We have a new feature that no one knows about, where if you press tab you can toggle between:

Arrow keys select on-screen-keys

or

Arrow keys move cursor

Some little, out of the way help-text box would be the perfect way to tell users about that. I don't think there's any intuitive way to express something like that other than to flat out tell the user. We could even have an option to turn off all "help text" for advanced users, or leave it up to skinners.
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