Thunderbird prefs redesign (aka mega-prefs)

Bryan Clark clarkbw at
Wed Dec 29 00:51:35 UTC 2010

On 10-12-28 1:28 PM, Bryan Clark wrote:
> * Final Thought! *
> Something I'd like people to think about and I'll try include this in 
> my next rev of the mockup is creating a preference system that isn't 
> just static controls.  For example the Screenshot of New Account 
> Central [1] uses simple graphs to help people understand the 
> information presented.  One tab I'm trying to work on right now is a 
> "Disk Space" tab which helps people understand what accounts are using 
> what kind of disk space and allows them to turn off sync inside those 
> accounts.  Things like this are a bit more work inside XUL than they 
> are in HTML just because most of the javascript graphing systems are 
> expecting HTML and not XUL; it's not impossible just awkward.

Quick follow up with an update.  I did a quick prototype of a disk space 
preference section to help describe what I was talking about.

This isn't very interactive or functional yet but I can keep working on 
it to make it that way.  There is a lot that could be done to 
interactively show how much space is being used by accounts and how much 
(roughly) will be saved as options are changed.  I want to keep thinking 
of a better preferences system in this way while we're also merging the 
settings and preferences together.

(now on source control)

/Just want to note/ that I'm not arguing that this isn't possible in XUL 
because I believe it is, just that I can easily get this mock-up working 
in HTML but my XUL protovis experiment is having some errors to which 
there isn't much help out there online or otherwise to fix it.

* Support Issues *

Another good step in our process should be to collect some data about 
support issues with account settings and preferences.  What are users 
having a hard time finding and what are they trying to work with the 
most.  I added the Junk section because I see lots of support issues 
with people finding and changing the junk behavior from mark to move.

~ Bryan
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