Designing the User Experience for Lotus Notes andSametime
I am working with Chris Majoros and Matt Hatem (Matt and I gavethe "themes" talk at Lotusphere) and Carrie Tracy ( visual designer--she and I gave the "Design Directions" talk together atLotusphere) on a "Mac" visual theme for Lotus Notes 8.5 on the Mac.
In addition to working on the visual part, we are toying with the ideaof reducing the number of toolbar buttons in the toolbars,because, as you Mas users know, the Mac toolbars are generally prettysparse. For example, Mac toolbars do nto generally have things likePrint, Save, etc. Should we pare down the toolbars on the Mac?
We are adding support for large icons to Notes 8.5 (in addition to the small ones that ship with Notes 8 and 801).
We plan to have a context menu item on the open list, and a preference.
Figure: Use large icons in the context menu on the Open list. I'ts a "check mark" menu item, like "Dock the Open List"
Here is the preference. Notice that I put it on the Windows and Themespage. I know that there used to be a preference on the BasicNotes client Configuration page.
However, this new preference applies to Expeditor, Syphony, andLotus Notes, so it does not make sense to have it on the BasicNotes client configuration page any more. For example, if Samantha is using "standalone" Symphony, she needs to be able toset large icons on the Open list for the 3 Symphony editors. TheBasic Notes Client Configuration preference won't be there. Yeah,I am a bit worried that people will not find it there. The other optionis to make a whole page just for that.
Figure: the new "use large icons preference" in the Windows and Themes preference page
This post has nothing to do with Lotus Notes. It's just a peek into the mind and motivations of Mary Beth.
When I was a kid, growing up Catholic in the United States, girls couldnot be altar servers. I really wanted to be one-- up on the altar,helping out, *really* participating at Mass.
My younger brother, Chris, however, was an altar boy. And, of course,he really was not that interested in being one. So we worked outa system, the kind that only siblings can create.
When he served, I'd sit in the first or second row with my Dad. And I'duse a series of hand motions to tell my brother what to do. I'd open my hands to let him know he had to brin gthe book up tothe priest. I'd wiggle my fist to let him know when it was time to ringthe bell. The system worked pretty well, except for the fact thatI desperately wanted to be the one serving, and my brother could notcare less.
So, last year, when my DAUGHTER was old enough to become an altarserver, I signed her up. She did the training. She's been serving atmass for over a year. And tonight she says that she reallydoesn't like it, She'd rather sing in the choir. My initial reactionwas to want to scream-- to tell her just how cool it was that girls cannow be altar servers, that women have come at least a little way in theCatholic church... but instead, I said "OK." Cause, the reallygreat thing is that it's not a big deal any more to have a girl as analtar server.
So now all she has to worry about is whether or not the Jesuits willallow women to become priests. Cause, of course, I wanted to be aJesuit priest, too. None of this second-fiddle nun thing for me. AJesuit Priest or nothin at all. Clearly, I never became a Jesuitpriest to fight the "counter -reformation". Rather , I ended up a userexperience designer for Lotus Notes, fighting Outlook. Hum... maybe notall that different after all....
Group Calendar for Daisuke
Group Calendar for Daisuke
Daisuke’s Work Goals
As a salesman of the IT Company, his main job is to coordinate providing the solution for IT sections manager's problems and to contribute to sales. For this objective, he provide information about JCM's new product and best practices, proposes some solution services and developing plan based on Honma's IT strategy.
He creates weekly work reports of customer support team and to present to Honma IT Manager.
By this procedure, Daisuke gets agreement of their works. On the other hand, he is managing customer's expectation and satisfaction, and then he is trying to keep good relationship.
His interpersonal work goals include:
Staying in touch with customers and Customer support team, obtaining reliance of a customer continuously. As a result, he contributes to the sales for th company. For this objective, he needs to know what kind of talents in JCN for solving problem in Honma It Section. Keeping a relationship with these talents is a one of the important goals for Daisuke.
Daisuke is responsible for
Daisuke spends three days in a week at the customer's office and other days he works at his JCM Office.
He checks his Notes mails first thing in the morning. Then he opens Notes DB of his section's calendar to check the schedule of others who work with him.
When he works at his office, he always adds detailed schedule information to show where he is.
If some one calls Daisuke while he is not at his desk, another person in the office will answer the call for him. This person will then call or send e-mail to Daisuke's mobile phone telling there was a call and what the business was.
He and his coworker who are in charge of Honma tell each other where they are to prepare for customer's urgent call.
He meets with his customer at HQ of Honma Motors face to face three times a week, and he checks if there is any problem in the installed product and service, and he checks new requirements.
Basically, bringing out PC from his office is prohibited.
Daisuke uses an IBM Thinkpad X40 laptop which was prepared by his company and he can't change PC's configuration and install other software without a IT Department's agreement.
The IT department loaded it with the following:
He is using USB memory with a security protection which approved by JCN IT section.
Recently, Daisuke purchased a house at Makuhari-city in Chiba, lives with his wife and a dog "Taro". He commutes by train every day. Commuting time is too long, and then he uses his mobile phone to read the news on the web and listens to the music.
Photo: Taro sleeping in the living room. (Mary Beth says: I think Taro is cuter than Fred's pugs).
The Lotus Notes design team is mindful of the fact that our users come from all over the world and speak many languages.
To that end, we have been working intermittently with two IBMcolleagues from IBM Japan to help us understand Japanese users and howLotus Notes is used in Japan.
Please allow me to introduce Ikuko Okamoto (the lady in the photobelow) and Masataka Yamazaki (the gentleman in the photo below).
Ikuko is a user researcher who conducted several interviews of Japaneseusers of Lotus Notes, and together with Masa, created a Japanesepersona (I'll blog about him later).
Masa has been working with John Lance on the design of Group calendar.Many of you may have met Masa at Lotusphere. He was in the UX labwith us.
They also did some great work promoting the persona approach last fall in Japan at an event called "Lotus Day Japan"
At that event, they gave Japanese attendees an overview of the personaapproach. Notice in the picture below how they had our primarydesign personas, with some Japanese text:
They also translated one or more of the design blog postings intoJapanese, as you can see in the next photo, and that helped makeJapanese customers more aware of how we are trying to get feedback fromthem and use it, (Sigh, only in English so far... where is my Star Trekuniversal translator?)
And here is a photo of the Daisuke persona, written in Japanese, ofcourse, since they showed it to Japanese customers to validate it.
Is itpainful for your organization to deploy new versions of the Lotus Notes Client,because your IT department has customized the Mail template?
We want tounderstand what your template customizations are and the reasons behindeach. For example, “Do you customizeyour template to show Last name, First name in the Inbox? If so, why do your users need/want this?”
MargoEzekiel, UI Designer, Notes Mail Client
As many of you know, we are improving the roaming user experience so that it's supported in the standard client.
We are creating some user policies so that Fred the Domino admin can specify that Ted Amado (our roaming user) sees NO roaming user upgrade dialog boxes at all-- it just happens.
Fred can also specify that Ted does see dialogs, and we want to improve on the existing dialogs.
Here are some draft dialogs. I am on the fence about how much to tellTed in these dialogs. On the one hand, I know that people don't readdialogs so I want them to be pretty short. On the other hand, if Fredhas decided that Ted gets to see what is going on, then maybe Tedreally does want the details. So here goes.
DIALOG 1: More info
IBM Lotus Notes
Your Lotus Notes administrator had made you a "roaming user"
so that you can get your Notes data on different computers.
To complete the roaming process, information needs to be
replicated with a server now. This might take some time.
Do you want to replicate that information now?
[ Yes ]
[ No, ask me the next time I start Notes ]
DIALOG 2: Less info
IBM Lotus Notes
Your Lotus Notes administrator had made you a "roaming user" so that
you can get your Notes data on different computers.
It might take a few minutes to set you up as a roaming user.
Do you want to finish the setup now?
[ Yes ]
[ No, ask me the next time I start Notes ]
Questions: Do we need to supply MORE info, like that it isContacts, Personal Journal, and Workspace that are getting replicated?
or does Ted not really care about that? At the moment, I am inclined togo with more info because if Ted doe snot care, then FREd can just setthe "Do it without any dialogs" option and the people who get thedialogs might be the savvy kind that want to know?
I'm working with Matt Hatem and other developers on the re-designedWorkspace.
(Since I made that posting, clearly some things have changed,like we call the Launcher the "open list" and our plan for the "type tofind" feature is that it will mimic the one you see in the Notes 8 openList)
I know that in the past, IBM provided not only the Workspace,but also a "Gridded Bookmarks" feature-- at least that's what we calledit internally. In Notes 7, you get to the "Gridded Bookmarks" byright-clicking on the Bookmark bar, and choosing the menu item "Displayas Workspace."
the context menu item looked like this (from the old Bookmark bar):
My understanding (from talking to internal people) is that the "GriddedBookmarks" did not quite "get it right" and that is why people stilluse the "old workspace". I want to make sure that our newWorkspace design does not end up in the same situation, so I want tounderstand why the "gridded bookmarks" never seemed to replace theworkspace.
So, if you were to click "Display as Workpace" on the folder labeled"Applications" in the bookmark bar (labeled databsaes in Notes 7), you'd see something like this (these are my bookmarks, of course,yours would be, well, yours...). The idea is that the sub-tabs yousee-- Applications, General, Domino Design, HR and MIcs, Ligal, PIMapps, those are the tabs in the old workspace.
An advantage of the "Gridded Bookmarks" was that you woudl get a"checklet" (a square) for everything on your bookmark bar-- alink to a view, a link to a document, a URL, etc. NOT JUST thedatabase. For example, as you can see in the following figure, any item in my Favorite Bookmarks gets a square, even if it's not adatabase.
Here are some of my assumptions, please, PLEASE let me know if they arecorrect, and of not, please give me more info. Becasue if youdon't, this workspace re-design we're working on might be a flopand we'll all suffer.
Assumptions on why these gridded bookmarks never replaced the Workspace
1.Nobody knows it exists. It's only on a right-click and nobody everfound it (the new desing REPLACEs the workspace option, and should bein the same place as the old workspace option)
2. The gridded bookmark tabs did not retain the color and color was soimportant that it was a deal-breaker (the new design retains the colors)
3. You single-click to launch it, compared to the double click in theworkspace. that just felt wrong (new design has double click)
4. Once you "drill down" several levels of nesting, you don't know howto "go back up" because this little control over in the upper right wasunclear: (new design uses a tree control on the left, as you can see inthe Workspace re-design link above)
Thus, if we make sure we solve the problems above, we have a shot atmaking our new, re-designed workspace good enough that you'llmove to it from the old workspace? IF not, what else do we have to do?
Also, Margo and I are having a contest to see if I get more responsesto this than she got to the feedreader posting. Please don't disappointme :)
Now that I know Jim Casale lives 15 min from Laguardia, I'll never bestuck there again, cause I can be stuck as his house for dinner :)
I did make it home eventually. I managed to get a standby seat to Loganin Boston, and then hired a shuttle van to drive me to the Manchester,NH, airport.
Once there, I scraped the snow and ice off my car and drove home by 4am.
Turns out that was better than Sandesh's experience. I thought he'dmade it home, but over in the other terminal, all his AA flights werecanceled and he didn't make it home until 7am, poor guy.
I had a customer visit today on Madison Ave., New York City. Iwent with Sandesh, the deveopment director. He flew in from Boston onAmerican. I flew in from Manchester, New Hampshire on U.S. Air. He'shome now. However, due to some snow, I am now stuck atLaguardia ariport. The current prediction is that my 6 pm flightwill leave at 11 pm. If if doesn't get cancelled.
I know, John Lance, I should have listened to you. You told me to take the train.
It's going to be a long, cold night. Some announcer just came on andsaid that all the hotels were booked. I am hoarding my spot nearan electrical outlet ....sigh.
It was my 12-year-old's idea to 'splatter paint' a painting. Wehad a blast. I made us wear not only painting clothers, but also showercaps. At first, the girls thought it was stupid... but as we got"into" flinging paint across the room, they understood why I made usput up plastic on the ceiling...here is our masterpeice...
A design change we’re investigating is integrating the Feed Reader into the Mail navigator, so thatthe feeds can be viewed, previewed & managed like mail. Initially, this design poses 2 largequestions:
1. How do you want to manage your feeds? Do you want the feeds within your current folder structure (Figure 1), or as a separate high-level node in the navigator (Figure 2)?
Figure 1 (Feeds within Folders) Figure 2 (Feeds as Top Level Navigator Node)
2. Where do you want to store your feeds?
a. In the Mail file itself. This will be convenient as the feeds will replicate with the mail file. The downside is that the feeds will take up space and add toward your mail file quota.
b. In a separate .nsf.
c. Give the user the option of A or B (in a preference and also through policy). Similar to how Chat HIstory is handled now.
3. Also, we're interested in your general reaction to this design idea - i.e. moving the Feed Reader to the Mail Navigator.
Updated with a better link (Thanks to John Head!)
Here is one link to the whole slide deck.
You can get to the final version of the Lotusphere 2008 talk that I did with Carrie Tracy
on "Design Directions for Notes and Sametime" at the following link.
Please note that I had to divide it into 3 parts... so look for all 3.
You can get to the final version of the Lotusphere 2008 talk that I did with Matt Hatem
AD 204 "Customizing Notes with CSS" by going here and looking for the file name AD204_Final
We're still working on getting your the Css inspector plug-in that he demoed.