Bugzilla, YUI, and other things.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bugzilla's new UI for Index.cgi

Bug 475063 is an enhancement to "Make the logged-out index.cgi simpler". After a few chats with Max Kanat, I've mocked up and submitted a patch to do just that.

Right now the patch looks like this.

Since this is a major change to the Bugzilla UI I'd love to get some feedback about this!

A few things to note:

There have been some discussions about how Buggy should look, with a pupil or without, more recongnizable or less, or even if we should use him at all. So that's in a state of flux.

Also for the dusk skin this UI will look the same, just set to the monocrome of Dusk.

For those wondering "what about the login box on the homepage?". There is another bug to improve that and make it easier to log in from any page! Bug 476090 will allow users to login directly from any page without needing to leave the context that they are in. Hopefully in the future we'll be able to do this ajax style to avoid having to leave the page at all.

Can't wait to hear your feedback about both of these bugs.


  1. Cool!

    The asymmetry bugs me a touch tho... how about centering the icons row and associated link bar?

    Human performance wise, this will facilitate usage of the header and footer functions for experienced users and let novices grok the more friendly page content.

  2. The design (colors, styling, buttons, layout, etc) looks horrible and gives no indication of what Bugzilla is, which seems important for people sent here for the first time. (e.g., Just file a bug, stupid!)

  3. Only 11 search-related things on the page?!

  4. My name is Max Kanat-Alexander, FWIW. :-) Both of those are my last name.

    Very excited to see the page redesign. :-)


  5. I'm not a big fan of large icons or gratuitous amounts of whitespace. This type of UI might be well suited to plain old bug reporters (if they like that sort of thing). But remember it should be useful to developers, as well.

    Here's an example; Mozilla's Bugzilla has some very nice links on the index page; "hot bugs", "bugs filed today" ... Those links aren't default in a standard configuration as far as I know, but I find them quite interesting and helpful as an onlooker.

    Having [smaller] icons associated with these types of links (graphs and reports, predefined search queries, ...) could spice things up a bit, but then again you don't want it crowded in any case.

    That said, I do like the minimalist approach. It's rather Google-esque, which can be a very good thing!

  6. I think there's some good stuff here, and certainly b.m.o.'s front page could be simpler. But there are a few concerns (some of which have been raised by others):

    - There's a lot of search-based redundancy. I think the front page should have a search box, and not a search icon-link (even simpler!) :-)

    - Most of the links under the search box could go

    - We need to fix the header/footer redundancy, at least on the front page. It's probably a symptom of our over-complicated UI and too-long pages. At the moment, you basically have the same three actions (new | search | log in) three times in three different ways. In other words, it could be even simpler!

    - The icons don't really fit with the theme. :-|

    But definitely keep iterating.


  7. Lets see if I can address people's feedback, which has been great, btw.

    AndyEd: I agree the lack of centering bothers me a bit as well. Thanks for pointing it out!

    Melanie: I'm not a graphic designer, so if you'd like to volunteer some alternatives I'm happy to hear them. But as far as not showing what bugzilla is. I think the 3 buttons clearly show it. File a bug, search or request an account. In reality the 2 main things are filing bugs and searching for them

    Parasyte: That's another bug that we're working on: Bug 130835 And it's one that I can't wait to have done. Remember this bug is to make the homepage simpler for new users.

    Gerv: Yup, I agree just having the search box might be nice, but the problem is the search box is just the quick search, and there is a bigger issue with the fact that search != quicksearch, and neither are like advanced search, which is why we have both.

    The links under search box are the only places where those links appear in the whole UI, so I wasn't ready to get rid of them without having bugs to kill them.

    The Toolbar is probably another bug, but I'm not sure which.

    I'm happy to take suggestions on the icons!