January 3, 2015 in Feedback
IP.Gallery 5.0.5 has many usability problems and I hoped that 4.0 release will solve all of them and make IP.Gallery really convenient, but what I see on the demo site disappointed me a lot(
In 5.0.5 the default size of images is very small. Today nobody see photos in 640*480 px size. Everybody prefers to see images in a fullscreen mode (look at Facebook). IP.Gallery has a special mode - slideshow, but it's the same - small images with two useless areas at the top and the bottom. Furthermore there is no link to the slideshow on a single image page, so most of the visitors never know, that there is a Slideshow in this Gallery. Anyway, slideshow is useless. You can't get a link to the current image, can't resize, e.t.c.
Lightbox is bad too - image is not enough big by default (big unused space at the top and the bottom). It hasn't navigation buttons. You can't go to the next image. You should first close Lightbox, scroll down, choose next image thumbnail, click on it, wait for the full page loading, after that click on image again. Repeat. It's annoying... People need only one button - "NEXT".
As I see in IPS beta 4.0 the Gallery inherited all these problems. Moreover now you can't open image in a fullscreen by simply clicking on image. Now you should find small icon at the top right corner. OK. You got this image in fullscreen, now you try to jump to the next image by clicking "right" keyboard key hoping to see the next image in the same format. But you get... the same image and the next image behind of it... What the heck?
For example, "lightbox" in Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/taysaev/9475192755/in/photostream/lightbox/
in Facebook https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10101814624664421&set=pb.4.-2207520000.1420275043.&type=3&theater
in IP.Gallery http://community.invisionpower.com/gallery/image/7077-1050108610891087108310771081-42/?browse=1 (need open Lightbox at the top right corner)
AJAX loaded description, comments and EXIF info are good, but it's not exactly what people come to see first. An image is the main thing in any gallery. All other things are minor.
The hierarchy of albums and categories is wired:
Categories can include images or albums. "Category" usually means "category of albums". But in IP.Gallery "category" means "category of anything" (albums or images).
The traditional hierarchy looks like:
Any image should be in an album. Album can be in a category or subcategory.
Also in IP.Gallery 5.0.5 any album belongs to one user. You can't make, for example, public album "Your pets photos" and allow users to upload their photos into it. Very inflexible.
Guys, do you ever use Facebook albums? Why do you continue making outdated inconvenient interface? Why don't you adopt the experience from the best examples like Flickr and Facebook? Please, save the Gallery! Fix these problems in the new release! I want to continue using your product, but the usability problems make me think about other gallery scripts.
I agree with a lot of what you say. Albums are for individual members. Categories are for groups with the appropriate permissions to upload to. This suits my forums. Your pets photos should be a category not an album.
I now allow members to upload HD resolution images i.e. 1920x1080. Displaying them full screen is a mission and I'm probably the only member of my site that knows how to display an image full size / full screen:
First you have to click on Options > View all sizes then click on the largest size. That then displays in the same window with scroll bars. if you then click twice on the image you can the image without the forum wrapper. You then have to press F11 to hide the browser toolbars to finally see your image full screen.
Very cumbersome and not possible to move on to the next image.
Compare this to Facebook:
Click on image. You don't get the image full size if it's large but what you get is larger than what IP gallery gives you. To go full screen you click on Options > Enter fullscreen. That's it. Then of course you can click on the left right arrows to view other images. Much slicker than how IP Gallery does it.
You should suggest this in Community Suite Feedback > IP.Gallery.
1. I think the new IP.Gallery 4 has been improved in a lot of ways, chief among them the display of thumbnails. I really like the modern Flickr-style layout of thumbnails, although the other two layouts are rather bland.
2. Navigation has been improved in image view. Not in lightbox view. So I agree with your assessment here:
OK. You got this image in fullscreen, now you try to jump to the next image by clicking "right" keyboard key hoping to see the next image in the same format. But you get... the same image and the next image behind of it... What the heck?
3. I also like your suggestion that, when you click on any image located anywhere in the gallery, it immediately goes to the lightbox and skips the image page. Most people want to immediately see the full glory of the image. The EXIF data and comments and likes are entirely secondary.
4. I don't really care so much about the naming conventions for Categories and Albums, as long as it's flexible enough to handle public / private / followers-only permissions and a flexible hierarchy.
3DKiwi, yes, I meant the size as big as possibile for user's monitor. Fullsize image is usually needed for downloading, so I think, additional actions are acceptable for that operation. I worry about the most common actions for any user - comfortable images viewing. Now it's really bad.
Thanks, guys, for your comments. I hope, IPS team will see this topic and make conclusions.
I don't use IP.Gallery myself but I very much agree with your thoughts here. Just wanted to offer my support for these suggestions.
Especially going fullscreen should be simpler.
This is a pretty good idea.
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