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ACP idea


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Since a picture is worth a thousand word here is a quick mockup of what I was thinking about...something that would function like the permission screen for each forums.

My point is that Configuring the individual permissions for member groups should be the same as the forums permissions. You are using 3 tabs per member groups. If would be better to have less tabs and longer pages to scroll, the reason is that most of the content and settings are buried in the ACP. Finding an individual setting sometimes is impossible unless it is search-able. Anyway I was looking at my user groups and went into Banned for a laugh and noticed that banned people could still search and do other stuff. That meant that unless I went individually into each user group and then individually into each 3 horizontal tabs (group settings, forums, global) to check permissions I would not have known that.

Hence showing all group setting on the left as tabs then a single long page with each User Groups presented horizontally so you can quickly switch a group on or off in a particular category. Anyway, the mockup is crap but you get the idea.

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  • 2 weeks later...

No...you just scroll horizontally or paginate the columns. The issue is to be able to see all permissions together in a single screen instead of having to navigate many screens. You can also simplify the buttons by removing the text or making that text smaller.
A single matrix for permissions is always better. IPB is awesome but some of the ACP sections suck major ass in terms of user friendliness. Many settings are totally hidden and you have to jug between:

- Left side tabs
- Left navigation tabs and links
- Top section Tabs
- Pages within Top section tabs

There is no real single UI theme. Consolidating the UI elements to only have a single serie of vertical and horizontal tabs would do a lot of good. One clear example of settings being buried into links is something like the language packs. Editing the individual language packs should not be done by clicking on the pack itself. Remember that in the pack themselves you also now have to deal with the little < icon on the right side of the screen, that settings drop down.

So now on top of left navigation, side navigation, tabbed horizontal navigation and inside links you also have right side buttons/drop down. I am sorry but there is at least one or two levels of navigation that should be moved. The concept of hierarchical navigation comes to mind. Start with left side being the most important, then have a sub navigation on the left then move to horizontal tabs as those would be level 3 and limit your UI to 3 levels not 5 like we have in the ACP.

I am not complaining just stating that as a UI designer the ACP has a lot of navigation flaws...hence why you have the search functionality to find where things are. Your goal should be to NOT have to use the search to find settings. Here we had to resort to print ALL pages of the ACP and re sort them in sections. Here the idea is to show all groups at the same time and the very very large majority of users do not have 20 groups. You must not manage for the exception and this is why showing all groups together with sub options on a single page makes more sense imo.

Anyway that was just an idea

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