DaDaBIK
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the PHP Database application generator for MySQL, PostgreSQL and SQLite; also available for Wordpress.

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New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions

Posted by eugenio 
New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 07, 2016 12:09PM
These are the changes to the GUI that I would like to implement in DaDaBIK 8 in order to make the front-end responsive and more user-friendly. I am not sure if everything in this list will be implemented but I will try to.

FRONT-END

Login page
Currently (DaDaBIK 7.x) a mobile user needs to zoom-in to see the login form clearly, the login page in DaDaBIK 8 will become responsive.

Menu
Currently (DaDaBIK 7.x) the focus of the top menu is on the database operations (insert, search, show items, …); I think that most of the people (including me) prefer to have direct links to the data items (i.e., the tables). So, the top menu in DaDaBIK 8 will have links like “Customers”, “Products”, “Suppliers” and so on. Once the user clicks on a menu item, DaDaBIK will show the records related to that table (as in the current “show items”); this page, on the top of the datagrid, will also display two links: “Search” and “Create new”.

The dropdown table menu will disappear and will be displayed (replacing the menu) only when the screen width is lower than a threshold, in order to make the menu responsive. Does anyone think that the dropdown table menu is something we have to maintain?

What happens if you have a lot of tables in your DaDaBIK installation? The list of links won’t fit in the top menu so you will have two options:

Display the menu on the left side (you can set top VS left from the config file)
Submenu (for each table, you need to say which is its “parent”, if any)

The logout link will be moved in the top right corner, together with the “Logged in as: ….” information.

Results grid

Having a lot of columns can be problematic with small screen (I need to horizontally scroll the page); one of the most common solution to make a datagrid responsive is “flipping” the table: I see the fields as rows and the record data (for one or more record) as columns. I don’t like very much this solution: lot of development effort compared to the value added. So the results grid won’t change much, if there are too many visible columns the user will scroll the page or click on the details page to see all the data.

Forms (edit, search and insert form)

The form will become responsive, implementing a fluid layout that, for small screen:
put the label above its input field (instead of on the left)
put the fields one below each other (one row, one field)

I am trying to get this behaviour without loosing the current fields vertical alignment (e.g. the third input field in the first row is vertically aligned to the third input field on the fourth row), which turned out to be not trivial to achieve.

Details page

The details page will become responsive, adopting the same rules adopted for forms.

CSS File

The CSS file will be cleaned and the related documentation (comments in the file) will be improved. A layout file will document, using a picture, which class to edit to affect a particular section of the layout

General improvements

New icons, some minor graphic changes (colors, shape of the hover links, shadows, … ) that will make the GUI look more modern and fresh.

HTML design techniques

DaDaBIK uses a table-based layout, an approach which is currently considered bad by a lot of developers. The table-based approach will be probably (at least at the first step) abandoned for forms and details page but not for the general structure of the layout (the grid used to contain menu, forms, …). Sorry, I am not the kind of developer who thinks that using a table for something different than tabular data is a mortal sin smiling smiley


ADMIN PAGES
The form configurator misses some user friendliness: the page needs to be in part redesigned and some parameters needs to become more easy to configure (e.g. for select_single fields with lookup table, users should choose tables, primary keys and linked fields from a list, without the need of typing names manually). Apart from improving the form configurator, the admin pages won’t change much and, at least for the moment, they won’t become responsive: I don’t think that people configure DaDaBIK applications using a mobile device, am I right?

________________________________________________________
Eugenio |\.-./| DaDaBIK developer and project admin
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 07, 2016 01:39PM
Results Grid

I'm not sure if this would be possible for this release or for future releases, but a lot of my coworkers have been saying that it'd be nice to double click each line item in the results grid to goto the edit screen instead of clicking on the button on the far left.
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 07, 2016 01:42PM
Yes you are right it would be nice, I'll think about it. Thanks.

bkim Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Results Grid
>
> I'm not sure if this would be possible for this
> release or for future releases, but a lot of my
> coworkers have been saying that it'd be nice to
> double click each line item in the results grid to
> goto the edit screen instead of clicking on the
> button on the far left.

________________________________________________________
Eugenio |\.-./| DaDaBIK developer and project admin
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 08, 2016 12:12PM
Bkim's idea is great and would be very useful; I'd love to see it go one step further. It would be wonderful to have a spreadsheet-style (i.e. table view) interface from which a user could enter/edit data directly in-line, without having to open each specific item in edit view. I have no idea if this is possible, but can't hurt to ask!
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 08, 2016 11:18PM
Hello, inline editing in the datagrid is possible but quite complicated to develop in the DaDaBIK environment, respect to the value added. If you think about it, most of the times you save just one click respect to entering the edit page.

grimax Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bkim's idea is great and would be very useful; I'd
> love to see it go one step further. It would be
> wonderful to have a spreadsheet-style (i.e. table
> view) interface from which a user could enter/edit
> data directly in-line, without having to open each
> specific item in edit view. I have no idea if
> this is possible, but can't hurt to ask!

________________________________________________________
Eugenio |\.-./| DaDaBIK developer and project admin
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 10, 2016 06:21AM
Hello Eugenio.
I'm a too young DaDaBiK user ;-) to have been able to participate to the 'DaDaBiK 8 Desiderata' but i hope my contribution here will produce some impact on your development choices.
Btw, i thank you (again) for your DadaBiK product which is imho a must have tool !

Regarding the improvements you propose for the v8, i agree of course that responsive design would be a must !
I agree too that the main menu should allow directly access to database tables (not all of them of course but those selected in admin pages :-)) without the need of clicking 'Show' or 'Insert' or 'Search'.

I'm not an historical html developer so i don't have any final opinion regarding the use of table-based layout, i trust you !

I agree that admin part of DaDaBiK sites has not to be responsive and i think in-line editing would become a headache with hidden mandatory fields or field-based access rights.

On the other hand, i wanted to talk about a minor new feature which could be called 'Free SQL string to populate list based fields':
It's the possibility to type in (from the forms configurator) a full customized SQL select string to populate authorized values for a list field (at least for SELECT_SINGLE fields).
For example, i could set 'SELECT DISTINCT supplier_brand FROM equiments' to populate the SELECT_SINGLE list for the field 'supplier_brand' in the new/edit form of the 'equipements' table. The main goal is to propose to the user a list of existing values.
There is a little gap if the user wants to type a value which is not in a list (if the corresponding option has been selected): the new value should be accepted as is without any kind of validation (no foreign key).

Anyway, thank you for all your work,

Regards,
--
Gilles

--
You are using DaDaBIK version 7.3 enterprise, installed on 26/05/2016, the last version of DaDaBIK is 7.3 released on 24/05/2016
You are runnning the last release of DaDaBIK
PHP Version: 5.5.35
mysql version: 5.7.12
Web server: Apache/2.2.15 (CentOS)
Client: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; rv:46.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/46.0
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
June 10, 2016 11:17AM
Hello Gilles,
thanks for your contribution and appreciation!

The feature you are proposing used to be available in DaDBIK but it then was discontinued because, as far as I remember (it was looong time ago) it was difficult to integrate it with some new DaDaBIK features/security requirements.

I will think about it but remember that every time you face this kind of limitations you can always use a VIEW e.g.
Create VIEW my_view as SELECT DISTINCT supplier_brand FROM equiments

and then you use my_view as a source of your select_single

Cheers,

________________________________________________________
Eugenio |\.-./| DaDaBIK developer and project admin
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
December 29, 2016 05:09AM
Hi,

i bought a couple of days ago the DadaBIK8 Beta. I would like to ask if there will be in the final release a more user-friendly design then in the beta?

Many thanks for the support and for DadaBIK.

Kind regards,
Benjamin
Re: New GUI in DaDaBIK 8, please comment this post with your suggestions
December 29, 2016 09:30AM
Hello,
which parts of the design you are referring to? Please send your comments and feedback about the private beta to support@dadabik.org

Best,

________________________________________________________
Eugenio |\.-./| DaDaBIK developer and project admin
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