Discussing the new 23dashboard... Join in!

39 comments so far...

Migger February 13, 2007, 07:37 PM
Ser bestemt lovende ud. En tidshorisont?
Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 February 13, 2007, 08:00 PM
It'll probably be available from tomorrow morning in a hidden version at /username/a/dashboard. That is, if I get the time to do the update in the early morning hours.

Any comments on functionality and look?

Migger February 13, 2007, 09:39 PM
Did you try to put the pictures on the left? They are still the main focus of 23, even though the community and importance of social features are growing.

That would also solve any problems with long names of photogroups etc.(which you are already aware of, I can see ;)

Looking forward to tomorrow.

clvrmnky February 13, 2007, 11:33 PM
Sweet. Dashboard view.

I don't mind the pictures on the right, but what about v.2.0 letting one drag the four sections around, or placing them how you like? Hey! I had to ask!

More important: keep the interface clean and simple. (I'm sure you will, but just saying it out loud that I appreciate the clean interface at 23.) Those Other Sites feel that have to clutter up their dashboard views with so much cruft it can be hard to know what to look at.

Jean-Pierre Avakian February 14, 2007, 11:16 AM
Love it !
Niels Hartvig February 14, 2007, 07:53 PM
Looks neat.

Not to sound like a spoilsport, but any plans on performance tuning / scaling plans in the future? A more stable 23 would be a killer feature imho.

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 February 14, 2007, 08:52 PM
Hartvig, we have been performance tuning extensively for the past month or so by rewriting key features to consume less resources (Just In, Subscriptions, Conversations, Calendar to name a few). This morning we put a new version of 23 online, which serves almost every photos on the page differently from previous versions to ensure less load on the servers.

However, the problem is not in the coding -- we've simply hit the ceiling of our current hardware configuration. We'll be upgrading hardware this month, but we also want to make sure that all the small pieces fit together once we do so.

So please, have patience with us for a tiny while longer...

Niels Hartvig February 15, 2007, 07:36 AM
Hurray - well done, Steffen.
Niels Hartvig February 15, 2007, 07:38 AM
btw: What happend with the updates on all these thoughts on the blog. I kept looking in the past period where 23 was turned (almost) unusable slow, but no word. Think it would do a lot to use the blog on updates to keep us loyal and help us understand the probably huge challenges you guys are facing.
clvrmnky February 17, 2007, 04:09 PM
Now that I've used it for a few days I feel that the layout of the Dashboard could be improved.

The Photogroups and Conversations are in a single column down the left-hand side, though these are conceptually different things. I think of Photogroups as more as an aggregate of photos rather than the (often missing) "user icon". Perhaps a synopsis view showing the recent changes to Photogroups (maybe along with who last added photos to the group)?

And that big chunk of whitespace under the thumbnails for recent photos is crying out for something. Maybe the recent Photogroup photos can go there?

The Dashboard should be about the photos representing a slice or view into the entire 23 library, tailored to me.

So, one thing would be a proper tag-cloud showing recently used tags by me, and common tags used by others.

Anyway, those are thoughts off the top of my head. Take with a healthy grain of salt.

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 February 18, 2007, 09:55 PM
clvrmnky -- I agree with you on every count. We need to find a better way of showing what's happening in photogroups. I'm thinking about limiting the initial view to only five photogroups order by the latest activity? Using the entire width and including both photos and bits of conversations my make sense?

Does the Just In part make any sense? I'm a big fan of the "28 photos from different users" view because you'll always find something nice -- but only four photos will never have this effect. Perhaps implementing some sort of "23rank" on photos might help selecting better photos. This would also make sense on the main front page.

It might make sense to drop the tag view. I'm not a big tag user myself so I would never use this in any case. In any case it has to be beter contextualized that it is now. All suggestions are welcomed.

I'd like to show more that four recent photos -- possibly 16 (in 50x50) instead? Is there any point to showing your own latest photos? (I think so, since it'll confuse users to log in a not have immediate access to their precious photos. I had a discussion with Thomas on Friday, and he was advocating for something different. Don't recall it now though. I usually don't take our discussions seriously...)

clvrmnky February 20, 2007, 02:53 PM
More photos is good. The dashboard should primarily be about photos. The view should alwasy include our own photos, I think, to be true to the Dashboard paradigm.

I like seeing an ever-changing selection of photos, as well. If "23Rank" is similar to That Word That That Other Company Trademarked that allows them to mark how, um, "interesting" and photo is, then why not?

I personally like tags, but if they don't fit with your vision, so be it. It can be viewed as current interesting or new metadata flowing into the 23 library, and doesn't take up a lot of room. I admit I rarely use tags clouds (i.e., click on them), but they do carry a lot of information. I sort of treat them like Google AdWords! I glance at them and _occasionally_ click-through.

So, if we keep the column view then perhaps: conversations down the left-hand side, selection of photos (2x4 or 4x4 thumbnails) in the main column.

I'm not sure how Photogroups fits in to this. Perhaps keep them where they are, but rendered differently? I can't help but think that a view that shows the last n photos instead of the photogroup icon might be nice. Not sure where it would go. Upon re-reading your last comments, I actually like the idea of Photogroups rendered as last n photos with comments. Again, not sure of the layout I'd choose.

If we do keep tags, perhaps a cloud of tags rendered as a page footer?

mads February 21, 2007, 10:01 PM
Man, you are doing some KILLER work. Keep it up.
Magnus Christensson March 01, 2007, 01:14 PM
I think I would like to know which of my recent photos that are private.
I can do this with the current service but right now, using the dashboard, I don't know what others see and not.
It would be enough to have a small icon or something indicating if a photos is private - i.e. no need to indicate official photos.

What do you think - good or bad idea?

Migger March 01, 2007, 02:51 PM
Good idea, Magnus. I would love that feature too.
PimpDaddy March 16, 2007, 10:14 AM
Is the dashboard taken down? I just get a "This site couldn't be found on 23"-ish message
PimpDaddy March 16, 2007, 10:15 AM
PS. I seem to have extremely good english skills.. NOT, LOL :)
clvrmnky March 16, 2007, 07:56 PM
You might have to reset your browser cache, or do the cntrl-refresh trick (if your browser supports that). The "monster sleeping" image was showing up for a great number of 23 URLs until I did that.
PimpDaddy March 19, 2007, 10:52 AM
The Dashboard has been changed I can see. What I liked about the previous "version" was the ability to see my last conversations(photocomments). For me, that was one of the best things about the dashboard(until now) :-)
Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 19, 2007, 10:59 AM
Yes, it's evolving. You have comments from your contacts under the "Your contacts" tab, but I'm contempating a "Your conversations" tab as well including comments made to your photos and replies to your own comments. I'm guessing that's what you're asking about?
Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 19, 2007, 11:26 AM
PimpDaddy (if that is your real name), have another look at the dashboard now. Comments?
PimpDaddy March 19, 2007, 11:33 AM
Ah, didn't see that because i just got "..." the first time I clicked on "Your Contacts" and "Your Photogroups" and thought it was a error that was to be corrected later :)

But a "Your Conversations" tab would be much nicer :)

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 19, 2007, 11:36 AM
It's being developed quite actively as we speak. So you've even got a "Your conversations" tab now.
PimpDaddy March 19, 2007, 12:04 PM
If only that was my real name ;-)

My name is Nicolas.

Looks awesome with the new tab :). Now I don't have to check my mail that often :)

clvrmnky March 20, 2007, 05:27 PM
I know this is still beta, but the new dashboard doesn't think I'm a Plus user, and has suggested I have room for 45 photos this month.

I assume because many of the links regarding my account actually go to the standard "link not found" this is expected, and these links are just place=holders.

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 20, 2007, 05:42 PM
You're absolutely right clvrmnky -- we haven't really decided which links/features are put down there. Also I'm still looking for a good CSS hacker to do the design.
PimpDaddy March 21, 2007, 10:15 AM
As of now, I'm not that keen on the new design any more. The old design seemed to run better. This feels "heavy" to use.
Morten Sværke Andersen March 21, 2007, 10:21 AM
Jeg kunne godt lide det gamle fordi det virkede let og simpelt. Det nye er lidt mere tungt, men faktisk også ret fedt, når man lige vænner sig til det. Jeg tror dog jeg ville vælge at have conversations som default-view.

Også lige en note til conversations: Der er en masse “løse” samtalebidder — nogle gange fra samme billede, nogle gange med andre billeder ind imellem. Det gør det lidt forvirrende.

Måske kunne man, hvis der var flere kommentarer til ét billede, samle dem sammen med ét thumbnail, og så flere tekstbidder ved det.

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 21, 2007, 10:21 AM
It is heavy since it hasn't been optimized in terms of database use and so forth. The design itself will change quite radically before we're done. The upside is that the dashboard will also be a sort of action guide rather than just an overview.
Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 21, 2007, 10:30 AM
You should be able to choose your default view yourself -- the dashboard will remember which tab you used last and return you to the same place. And when we get the caching right, it'll be as if you never left.

Morten, you're probably right about Conversations and the same thing goes for repeating photos in the "Your photosgroups" tab. I'm not sure how to communicate the visually though. I'll have to do some testing.

I'll introduce another item for discussion as well: "Action links". It's something we've been talking about around the company whiteboard for a while. The idea is to encourage actions such "Send photos", "Blog photos", "Create story", "Create slideshow", "Post to photogroup" etc. by including direct links within the dashboard. Such links would apply an action to a collection of photos, and it will also be an important part of the new uploader. (Which will hopefully launch for beta testing within a day or two.)

PimpDaddy March 21, 2007, 10:44 AM
"I'll introduce another item for discussion as well: "Action links". It's something we've been talking about around the company whiteboard for a while. The idea is to encourage actions such "Send photos", "Blog photos", "Create story", "Create slideshow", "Post to photogroup" etc. by including direct links within the dashboard"

Haven't you done this already? :)

Regarding the new uploader(and this might be off-topic): Is there any way to overcome the problem I am having when I upload MANY pictures? I uploaded 738 pictures from a Muay Thai event, and I uploaded them chronologically(spell check), but still a bunch of pictures from different fights ended up on some of the last pages of the album, instead of the right places.

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 March 21, 2007, 10:47 AM
Sure PimpDaddy,
First of all, you can sort albums by "Date taken" and by "Date uploaded" (through "Edit this album" -> Sort). If you choose the first option you'll have a neatly sorted album.

The larger point is that the new upload will upload files in order of filename, which should solve your problem, right?

PimpDaddy March 21, 2007, 10:57 AM
I think I have tried this before, but I'll just give it another try.

Yes, that should hopefully solve the problem :).

Morten Sværke Andersen March 21, 2007, 11:12 AM
Nice — thanks for the quick replies :)
PimpDaddy March 21, 2007, 11:19 AM
@ Steffen: That did not sort the problem :-( It can be seen here http://www.23hq.com/PimpDaddy/album/1754395?page=15

Pictures from some of the first fights of the night appear after pictures of the final winner

Steffen Fagerström Christensen Team 23 April 22, 2007, 02:36 PM
Hi all you dashboard freaks,
It's a month later and finally something's happened to the dashboard. Basically we've changed the design slightly and put it online. You can activate the dash by visiting http://www.23hq.com/23/redirect/a/activate-dashboard. After this the dashboard will become your main entry point to 23.

We've re-read this discussion quite a few times while working on this thing, and our main concern has been that the end result might have too much clutter and be too heavy -- as some of you noted. However, this approach allows us to have a lot of the nice 23 features present on the entry page in a accessible but compact manner. The first version (pictured above) was nice, sure, but in the end it contained too little information in too much space. I'm still very interested in hearing your comments on the most recent version...

Sværke noted that the Conversation view can become too fragmented, and he's probably right. Grouping more answers to one photo together is a good idea although I'm sure that it would have negative effects on performance. We'll look into that.

Tags have been dropped from the dashboard. I've been trying to convince my peers that tags are *so* 2004 and that no one will need to categorize information in the future. We'll have flying cars for Christ's sake -- who'll have the time to actually tag their photos?

The main job of the dashboard, though, is to introduce users to un-used areas of 23. For example, if users haven't added a buddy icon yet, they'll be prompted to do so. For current 23 Plus users with buddy icons (that's us, guys...) there are no suggestions at the moment though. Could everyone please contribute some good "tips" so I don't have to write them myself? ;-)
A very good source of inspiration is this thread in the forums: http://www.23hq.com/forums/message-view?message%5fid=1640895

clvrmnky April 22, 2007, 11:55 PM
I'm a switcher. Looks good so far.

As for the tag view, I think I'm starting to agree. Tags are, at their heart, metadata. While a tag-cloud is a neat widget, it is not always an optimal way for a human to browse through a large dataset.

Of course, ensuring access to tags by programs is still incredibly important, and is where tags really shine.

Bottom line: I ain't missing the tag-cloud in the dashboard view.

clvrmnky April 25, 2007, 04:06 AM

If someone makes a very long comment to a photo (i.e., there is no whitespace to break it on) the Conversations tab layout can get all funny. For example, if I do something silly like:


istoyanov May 09, 2007, 09:40 PM
After using the new dashboard for a two weeks or so, I'd like to say that I still feel much comfortable using the old-style page with the menu items above the "name strip". I also noticed that some of the dashboard items (i.e. discussion) weren't properly updated and I ended up using the menu at the top of the page for all common tasks at hand. The dashboard also seems to be limited in the number of displayed items and that brings another point in flavor of the old, more elegantly-simple layout.
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