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Re: [wtp-dev] Improving discoverability of facets in WTP wizards


" list of configurations grows faster than the number of facets"
I would put this down to abuse of configurations than anything else. Personally to me, it is much better anyday to select a single item in configurations than having to go and select individual facets. I just hope we address the right problem.
We might as well just rename the existing "Modify" button to either "Modify Technologies..." or just "Technologies...".

"Konstantin Komissarchik" <konstantin.komissarchik@xxxxxxxxxx>
Sent by: wtp-dev-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxx

12/24/2009 02:53 AM

Please respond to
"General discussion of project-wide or architectural issues."        <wtp-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx>

[wtp-dev] Improving discoverability of facets in WTP wizards

I’d like to solicit feedback about some proposed changes. The changes are tracked by the following bug, but I am also repeating them in this e-mail for convenience.
Facet selection page used to be the second page in all WTP project creation wizards. A few releases ago it was removed out of the wizard flow and placed into a separate dialog accessible via the "Edit" button next to the "Configurations" combo box on the first page of the wizard.
Since then, we have started hearing numerous feedback from novice users that indicates that we have hidden facets too much. The most recent feedback was a usability study conducted by a team at Oracle where users who have never used WTP were tasked with writing a basic application. One of the shocking discoveries is that they couldn't figure out how to enable JPA. These weren't novice programmers either (the team was composed of devs from our WebLogic Server group), but they were new to our tooling.
Time is right to take another look at this problem. I've had a discussion with a UI designer at Oracle about this and together we have came up with a mockup (attached) that proposes the following changes that should in principle make facets more discoverable without doing anything too drastic:
1. Create a "Technologies" group that merges the module spec version frame and the facet configurations frame.
2. Eliminate the facet configurations drop-down. Configurations (aka presets) is one of those ideas that I largely consider a failure. They sound good in principle, but do not actually improve usability as the list of configurations grows faster than the number of facets due to the cross-product effect. Once the list is long, picking through it is next to impossible, especially for novice users who this feature is trying to help in the first place. This change doesn't propose that configurations are eliminated completely (although that's something that we should seriously consider in the future). They would still be available in the facet selection panel.
3. Convert the edit button into a more obvious "Choose other technologies to use in the project..." hyperlink.
- Konstantin_______________________________________________
wtp-dev mailing list

Attachment: mockup.PNG
Description: Binary data

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