IM, Contacts & Social hackfest: Shell: Design: Work out the design for Shell's new contacts app
- Gather feedback
- Brainstorm features
- Sketch design
Morten discussed the current plan:
- Search from the Shell
- Provider that searches folks.
- Travis is adding search to folks
- This is the least controversial part of the
- Launch Alex contact app.
- View conversations.
- Contact information.
- Question whether we actually want a search for contacts in the shell?
- Talk of removing applications.
- Nick and Allan: Contact card is a key concept.
- Consistent visual representation of users across the desktop.
- This is called the "Contact Card" == "That's a user"
- Design work needs to be done here.
- Often a picture, main meta data (name) and other important meta data.
- Question whether this should be a shared library?
- Probably the sharedness should be in the design.
- We have a consistent design for a 'person' or 'contact' and then multiple implementations.
- Searching is about quick response.
- Travis says: Don't have to worry about too many results, since once the user types a few characters results are pretty limited.
- Nick: Squares aren't a good fit for contacts, since names are long, and they get cut off.
- Rectangles, like business cards end up being a good representation.
- Don't necessarily need lost of data in the contact representation.
- Button to see more info.
- Discussion took place of what needs to be in the contact card.
- As additional secondary metadata might choose to show the field that matched what you typed. Perhaps different secondary metadata fields for different contacts. Matches bolded.
- Start with a simple implementation of brute searching folks, and once Travis has finished folks support for advanced searching then move to that.
- Bastien ideas, could the search of contacts be implemented as an extension first of all?
- Nick suggest pausing after each key stroke 300ms, so that things don't flickr so much.
- Nick asks if there's asynchronous updating of searches. Travis says it's unlikely that they'll do 'deep searches'.
- Phillip is working on caching contacts in folks, so they don't disappear when the contact goes offline.
Use of search results:
- Nick says the action for clicking on a contact will be either:
- Loading always in the contact view.
- Or something fancier: If you type a search like 'email stef' then it would fine 'stef' and when you clicked on it then it would go and start an email.
- Or perhaps you could do like 'chat travis facebook' which searches for travis, and then start a facebook chat?
- There may translation issues, but might be solveable.
- Might be issues with people named the same as actions.
- Alex suggested having buttons for various actions in the shell results contact cards. These buttons would do various things, like email, chat etc...
- Nick brought up that this doesn't scale well.
- Hovering to expand and show various actions... But this doesn't work on touch screens.
- Right click on a contact card in the search results might get a set of things you can do with that contact.
- Probably won't be enough to make submenus. People like scrolling better than submenus.
- Maybe only have one email item, and one chat item, that would keep things short.
- First item in the menu, is the same thing as clicking on it. So in this case, view in contacts.
- Morten asks (in the above menu): How do we deal with two ways to chat someone from different accounts.
- This is a common thing because you would choose to chat via Facebook or work account.
- Perhaps making calls to the same people via phone or SIP.
- People can get fired for talking about work things on the wrong account, or through the wrong server.
- Established that this is an important use case.
- The empathy UI for which account to contact someone through is ugly.
- Alex: The contact app is a standard UI for exposing all these different ways to do X.
- Alex: How do you know that there are more than one possible ways to do X with a contact?
- There might need to be an icon in empathy dialogs (and similar UIs) that show you which account you're on, so that you can change it before you start chatting.
- General principle of once you start composing a message, or before you start chatting you can these choose your account, and then the recipients account. This wouldn't be exposed beforehand.