Designing the User Experience for Lotus Notes andSametime
From archive: November 2007 X
Hi all, John Lance here. You may remember me from such past blog postings as "Refreshing To Dos" and "Great TV Moments of My Childhood" (#4 = Mr. Hooper defending Sesame Street from an invasion of Klingons using only the letter G (as in "ghuh Daq Hegh DaH, Klingon dog!"). And my congratulations to the Alpha geeks who understood that without the benefits of a translator.)
Moving right along....
So we're re-examining the exporting of Contacts to different formats (vcard, CSV, TSV, and Structured Text). Specifically we're looking at some of the options that appear on the dialog and wondering how much Ted A) Understands these options and B) Needs to really be concerned about these options.
Of particular interest:
1. When exporting a VCard does Ted has the option to Export a Character Set (below). So, again, the question is does Ted know the difference between these two things? Does he care? Should we just pick one as the default and not give him the option (and which default would you pick?)
2. When exporting contacts to a CSV format Ted gets to choose to Export Character Set and the Level of Detail to incorporate (below). Keeping in mind that we are specifically focusing on Contacts (and not other cases where you would want to export to CSV) does Ted know/care about these different options? Are there defaults we can choose and simply hide the options from him (and what would they be?)
3. When exporting contacts to Structured Text format Ted gets our familiar Export Character Set option, plus a Separator Between Documents and Word Wrap options (below). Again, in the world of Contacts do these options make sense to Ted?
Thanks in advance for the feedback.
With the release of the Notes 8.5, the Notes Development Team has switched to an 'Agile' Development environment. In contrast to a traditional waterfall process, we are now focused on doing short, complete iterations, involving cross-functional teams. It's very exciting for us, particularly as designers, because it means we will have daily access to the actual working code, and thus better able to iterate designs as we go along. One of the very first phases of the Agile process, involves writing User Stories. User Stories are about the Business Requirement that will be solved by this item. As the item gets developed, we will be validating the implementation with customers, to make sure we are meeting the business requirement.
Here's an example of our User Stories for the Personal Journal. Please give us feedback as to whether these Personal Journal User Stories meet your business needs, and in particular, whether we have assigned the right priorities. We want to make sure we're building the right stuff!
Thanks in advance,
Margo (Notes Client Mail UI Designer)
1. High Samantha can look at her Journal entries, in views that feel familiar to other Notes 8.5 Views (i.e. Mail, Calendar, Contacts)
2. High When Samantha opens a journal entry, the look and feel is familiar
3. High Samantha can easily access her Journal
4. High Samantha is familiar with using the Journal, because it's named the same in DWA.
5. Medium Samantha can quickly create a page in her journal, from anywhere in Notes
6. Medium Samantha can access her journal from any machine.
7. Medium If Samantha is also a DWA user, she can see her journal entries when she uses DWA and Notes, no matter where they were entered
8. Low Betty, Ted's Administrative Assistant, should be able to access Ted's journal.
9. Low Samantha can easily move a journal entry to a To Do or an Activity.
In Notes 8, we tried to add more "self service" support that is more closely allied to the Notes client itself. You might have noticed that in Notes 8.0 we added a menu item on the Help menu called IBM Support Assistant, as shown in the following screenshot:
In Notes 8, this takes you to a browser page (as shown in the screenshot below), from where you can search other sources, get specific product information, and initiate data collection (which you can analyze yourself or send it to IBM as part of a PMR). (If you have Notes 8, please go explore this now!)
Now, for Notes 8.5, IBM is rewriting the support assistant in Lotus Expeditor.
This change in technology means we have a few opportunities to integrate more fully with the client. For example, would it be helpful to add items to search into the Help sidebar when it is open, or right into the Search Center Dropdown, as shown in the following figure:
On the one had, we realize that most end users like Samantha, Ted or Betty would not be searching the IBM support site. Rather, it is Ida in second line support or Fred the admin who would be doing so. Thus, I think that one important requirement would be the ability for Ida to add organization-specific areas to search, and the ability to remove certain other search choices. Please let us know if that's a realistic requirement.
What other requirements do you have for it? How, if at all, can we make it helpful for end users/help to reduce your internal help desk calls?
or maybe we really can't, and we should focus on administrators and application developers?
The IBM Support Assistant menu item is not built-in to the Designer client or the Admin client in Notes 8. Would it be more helpful in those clients? (I realize that if the Support assistant is now a plug-in, we may have some technical issues regarding which clients are in Expditor and how soon they will get there.)
Thanks for your insight and opinions.
If you plan to attend Lotusphere, please don't forget to "vote" (over on the Lotusphere web site) for which talks you think you'll attend. It really does help with the planning, and I like how it closes the loop/makes it come full circle-- I tell you what's in/what's out for features on this blog, and over on the Lousphere web site, you tell us what you want to hear about.
While you are there voting, please consider one or both of these talks that I am doing with colleagues:
The release of Lotus Notes 8.0 ushered in a new era of more user-focused design at IBM. This session reveals continuing changes in the processes that the design team is using in the design of Notes, Sametime, and Expeditor. We discuss many of the design decisions behind the most recent Sametime, Notes and Expeditor releases.
We'll also show some design ideas for upcoming features in these products and solicit your (unexpurgated) opinions! (That is the official summary, but since I wrote it, I think I should add some Symphony design directions to this talk as well, since mainly what I want to do is give you the big picture of all the client based on Lotus Expeditor)
Notes 8 has a beautiful new look and fee, and you can customize it! Inthis session, we'll teach you how to dissect several of the .css filesthat make up the Notes 8 look and customize them. We'll discuss styleguidelines for icons, shadows, gradients, and other visual details, andmake changes before your very eyes! We'll also show how you can followinteraction guidelines covering menus, toolbars, preferences, andsidebar plug-ins. You'll get the information you need to create acustom look that conforms to the new Notes 8 style.
Hey faithful customers,
John Lance and I have been hainvg waaaay too much fun at work lately... making this little video. Please, share with all your friends and enemies to help promote Lotus Symphony!
Lotus Symphony Video
If that does not work, please copy this into your browser.
As you know, my husband is a real geocaching fanatic.
I discovered just how much had rubbed off on one of my daughers when she showed me the letter she'd written to Santa, addressed:
89* 26' 34" N
30* 54" 26.44" E
When I pointed out that the NORTH POLE is at 90* she explained "ButMom, there's a research station at 90* so that can't be Santa Claus'sactual location."
Kids say the darndest things...
Regarding Lotus Notes business--- I'm busy finishing up some featuresfor 8.0.1 and working on a big posting on "Tips on how to set up Notes8 for Outlook users." And I know that Margo is drafting a postabout the personal journal, and Chris Kergaravat and Kathy Howard areworking on draft App dev personas, so stay tuned!
Mary_Beth 110000PF38 1,469 Views
Are you still having this problem that you posted to my blog? If so, can you please send screenshots and other details to me (Mraven@us.ibm.com)
Posted by Hynek Kobelka on Oct 25 2007, 07:13:33 AM EDT
In R8 I have a bug with "Automatically lock my Notes ID". After the time expires, my client gets locked and the log-in dialog is displayed. However after another while the "Select your ID-file"-dialog is suddenly displayed. Is this working as designed, or is it a bug ? Has anybody else seen this ?
EVERYBODY ELSE, if you think you found a bug, please open a PMR through your PSM (Premium support manager) and if you don't have that, you have 2 other options:
Post to the public forum:
Use the "Product Feedback" menu item on the Help menu if you encounter issues that have to do with Design and usability.
We have asked about your help usage in the past, and now we have a more focused survey for you.
The Domino Designer User Experience Team wants to hear from you regarding your use of Help in the Designer Client. Help us understand how you use NSF Help and what you think about it - and allow us to include your opinions and practices as we design and develop the Help System for Domino Designer Next.
Please take our short Domino Designer Next - Help Usage Assessment survey (only 9 questions) at https://www-950.ibm.com/survey/oid/wsb.dll/studies/DDNextHelp.htm and help us create Domino Designer Next with YOU in mind!
The survey will be active until Nov 30. Thank you in advance.