The first attempt to take the concept to screen designs was helpful in catalyzing a rather focused discussion in the development team.
The discussion highlighted a range of considerations:
- The main result to be shaped by, e.g., faceting should be a list of matching topics, rather than the contents of a specific topic.
- Text search is a selection strategy that can be expected to be as important as faceting.
- In some use settings, the number of topics may be too large to allow for dynamic faceting of the full contents.
- In some use settings, it may be necessary to require users to read certain topics before they can be allowed to start browsing the contents freely.
A revised version was developed in mid-November to address these considerations.
The new version introduces the idea of progressive refinement to handle large numbers of topics with acceptable performance. At login (state 0), session-wide selection may be performed of, e.g., the language version associated with the current user’s profile. In state 1, key facets, text selection and required topics are active in a modal screen. Once that step is completed, it is assumed that the number of remaining topics is small enough to allow for dynamic faceting.
The key facets and text selection box are collected in a top flap which animates out of view after the selection in state 1. The flap can be opened again at any point during the session to revise the state-1 selection.
Dynamic faceting, sorting and tag filtering are the user’s main tools for manipulating the topic list. (See states 2, 3 and 5.) The ideas of useful sorting orders are carried forward from the previous sketch:
- “Implicit”: Table of contents, Most used, Alphabetical.
- “Flickr”: Table of contents, Most used, Most annotated, Alphabetical.
- “Community”: Creation time, Most used, Most annotated, Alphabetical.
When a topic is selected for viewing, the user can add annotations to it. (State 4.)