Split user preferences menu into sections

(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #1


We settled on anchors:

Our one-page user preferences page is quite overwhelming right now. I think it ought to be sectioned up, similar to how most user pages work now.

Note: Let’s not get stuck on what groupings are the most logical right now. For something to start with, I more or less just applied some simple cut-off points in the current ordering of the Preferences page.

Discourse, gender, and online forums
Apply "mailing list mode" per category
More granular mailing list mode
Number shown in browser tab
Filling the profile setting in 3 segments -- request
(Jeff Atwood) #2

Hmm, no, I think scrolling should work here. Forcing pagination is a bit counter to how Discourse works.

(Sam Saffron) #3

I just feels like such a rare page to visit anyway, I don’t mind having anchors there though. We could have something like what you describe with # anchor links.

(Erlend Sogge Heggen) #4

Anchors would be a great compromise! Not even a compromise really, as it solves the problem equally well. Just want to orient the user a little bit when they land on this epic scroll.

(Pad Pors) #5

2 minor things:

  1. whatever i change in the profile page, i need to scroll down a lot in order to save the change. while for example in the admin panel, i can save any change in the setting right in front of the setting. and it helps me not to get tired.

  2. even if all the groups fit into one page, and not several pages, some type of visible/accessible segmentation may be helpful: there are information that i fill in order to show my face to others. and it’s just next to the information that i fill in order to personalize my feed and mailing list.

while there can be a very simple link that guide them to the personalize their feed.or a simple link that motivate them to fill their profile information which is only 2-3 fields and not a whole scroll-able page.

(Jay Pfaffman) #6

That sounds right to me. For Normal People, it’s simply not obvious that you would be able to change things like when you get emailed. Splitting out “Preferences” from “Profile” seems like it’d make sense. Choosing what topics you are watching is a pretty different activity from entering your Bio.

(Alan Tan) #7

Adding tabs will also make it easier for plugins to add settings to the user preferences page. Right now, we only have a few outlets which is mixed together with the existing settings.

(Jeff Wong) #8

How many settings would need to be added before it should be modeled like the admin preferences? Not saying we have nearly enough atm, but: I do like the section idea (also present in admin), and if there are a ton of settings, they can do a search for something.

(Sam Saffron) #9

Not too many more :slight_smile: now that I added user api keys it is really really wanting.

(Pad Pors) #10

is it at least possible to put the “forum behavior” out of other preferences part?

while it’s so easy to follow/mute categories and tags in the preference tab, most of our users do not even notice it.

(Alex Armstrong) #11

It’s just one fellow’s comment but here’s what one of my mods remarked to me just now:

the preferences page in discourse is pretty challenging to figure out. notification settings seem scattered and it looks a bit like a jet control panel … too many things for non-pilots to be able to land safely.

Edit: at the risk of belaboring the point, these are the instructions that trigger my mod’s comment:

It would be useful if I could link near where the user will find the aforementioned setting, instead of asking them to search for it up and down the preferences page.

(Jeff Atwood) #12

Yeah, we should probably split it into sections. Not sure when we’ll have time to do that, though.

(Steven Dorst) #13

I was pointed to this thread from one I started on a different ux issue. As a fairly new Discourse user (not programmer or administer) I thought y’all might appreciate my POV.

As @sam says, it’s a rare page to visit - at least I’m guessing it is. As such, going to great effort to improve it near perfectly isn’t likely the best use of the programmers’ time. Don’t let the perfect get in the way of the good.

From what I’ve seen, there’s a split in my mind in the options presented. ~40% profile information, ~30% how the forum works for the user, and ~30% essentially managing lists (of tags, categories and users).

Given the low priority of any change here (see above), I’d suggest splitting into only two parts for now: “My Profile” and “Preferences”. There’s plenty of room:

Disclaimer: I only use Discourse on a non-mobile screen, so I leave it to others to worry about the mobile presentation!

I think @Pad_Pors brings up a good point:

whatever i change in the profile page, i need to scroll down a lot in order to save the change. while for example in the admin panel, i can save any change in the setting right in front of the setting. and it helps me not to get tired.

It’d be really nice if the “Save Changes” button floated so as to remain on screen at all times!

(Wes Osborn) #14

What build/version were they added in? Is there a list of them somewhere?


How do people feel about the idea of hiding “advanced” options in each category from new users?

I sat next to a non-techie user as she worked her way through the preferences and she was so confused, it was quite uncomfortable to observe.

Could be an “show advanced options” to unlock the more esoteric preferences (and this would allow more UI space to explain the options in plain English)

Either that, or “unlock” more advanced preferences (e.g. User card background) using trust levels - that way, new users won’t be intimidated, and it also gives a touch of gamification?

(Joshua Rosenfeld) #16

Looking at the 1.8 #releases topic, it would appear the split is still on the table:

(Bianca) #17

I just sent a pull request that should implement the feature requested here. Feedback is much appreciated.

(Jeff Atwood) #18

It is dangerous to work on features that are on our active roadmap for a release, and I don’t recommend it unless you have specifically discussed it with us beforehand.

(Bianca) #19

I am sorry for that.

How should I proceed about this? Is there any member of the team that was assigned to this issue? I implemented the behavior described above (if I understood correctly), but I am ready to make any change necessary.

(Sam Saffron) #21

No worries @nbianca this is pretty much our fault, we had a #pr-welcome tag on this topic, we should have been more careful.

I think perhaps in future leave a comment on topics you are taking prior to starting work, just in case the #pr-welcome tag is stale.

Can you include some screenshots of the changes you made?