Author Archive

New design, out in the wild

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Yesterday, our new design has started to roll out on the edge servers. This will be an incremental and iterative process, as all the pieces come together, where our best ideas and speculations meet production data.
One of the conversations we had when re-designing the Launchpad UI, was that projects should be more on the foreground. They are what make Launchpad great, and the more projects that use it, the more powerful the tool gets. While breadcrumbs are still being worked on (they will look more like breadcrumbs and be more detailed), project pages now highlights the project’s logo and name:

New changes being rolled out on a daily basis. Exciting times!

Focusing on the Launchpad UI

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

Now that we’ve released Launchpad’s source code, our next couple of months of work are going to be mostly focused on our page layouts.
Launchpad has been around for quite a few years now, and tight release schedules packed with ever-changing features have had the side effect of us ending up with a lot of pages with different layouts.
In the next 2 months, we plan to fix that, and make sure every single page in Launchpad (452 templates!) has our new “3.0 look n’ feel”.
What does that look like, you may ask yourself?

Well, we’re still working on it, as we’re going to change the UI for the navigation (as well as tweak it’s functionality a bit, more on navigation in a future post). We do have rough draft which we’re starting to work towards, figure out what works and what doesn’t with real data, things we didn’t think about, etc.

The first major page we’re converting is the project overview page, currently being worked on by the world famous Curtis Hovey, and the initial draft should look similar to this:

It’s important to note we’re still working on the UI, so the image above is our starting point rather than the end product.

Since it will take some time to make all the changes, we’re most likely not going to make a Launchpad release in August, and jump straight to September. Roll-outs to our edge server will continue to happen daily, and we’ll need your feedback on the changes more than ever. If you’re interested in helping us, just join the beta testers team.

Exciting times!  🙂

Opening the AJAX flood gates

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

After many months on working on the necessary infrastructure to deploy complex AJAX widgets in Launchpad, more user interface reviews than any developer would like to go through in a life time, and a lot of cursing, the tip of the iceberg is finally showing.

Mark announced months ago the level of complexity we where aiming at achieving, and this last roll out of Launchpad actually places us very close to that.

Micheal Nelson did some amazing work, and landed the first of many pop-up widgets, allowing you to mark a bug as a duplicate without needing to refresh the page:

You will start to see that some links in Launchpad are green, those will mean that you will get an AJAX experience instead of going to another page. Check it out in bugs:

Tom Berger and Abel Adeuring also switched to javascript ninja-mode, and cooked up a slick UI for managing official bug tags:

AJAX in Launchpad

Friday, February 20th, 2009

After a few months of working on all the infrastructure changes needed to start deploying AJAX on Launchpad, we are now ready to start developing the mockups we’ve been working on for the past months in the User Experience team.
To make sure we coordinated the work of 35 distributed developers, and really get the ball rolling 10 of us gathered for a sprint in Berlin and went into full ninja-hacking mode for a week, while defining standards and best practices as we went along.
The outcome of the sprint has been amazing (it’s actually still going on!), and we’re very well prepared to roll out all kind of AJAX goodies like “in-line status editing”, “multi-line editing” and “person pickers” in the next few months. It’s going to be awesome  😉
We have decided on YUI3 as our javascript library, and while it is still not a final version, we are very happy with our decision and it has allowed us to do some really cutting edge work, while maintaining clean and re-usable code.

I’m also very excited about in-line text editing having landed last week in Launchpad’s edge version (used by beta testers), enabling in-line editing of bug titles and project names, which landed thanks to the amazing work of Māris Fogels and Francis Lacoste. For all you non-beta testers, you will see it rolled out late next week.

Since it got rolled out, every time I edit a bug title I get the greatest feeling when presented with this:

A lot more coming soon, so stay tuned!