UI map so we can try to understand what 90% of our users are doing

Mike Conley mconley at mozilla.com
Thu Sep 20 13:48:30 UTC 2012

Yes, this is something Blake, Jim and a few others were interested in doing.

This is, however, a minor roadblock:  if we're to adopt the same study 
that Firefox did, we have to change the way most of our buttons and 
menuitems work behind the scenes.

It seems that Thunderbird does a lot of "cheating" with menuitems and 
buttons. We have the element, and then we connect the action to the item 
via an oncommand parameter.

According to Jim, what we need to do is to follow the XUL Command 
pattern (basically, adding 1 more level of abstraction), and connect 
those items to command nodes, and the command nodes fire the actions.

I started to do this in bug 767118, but quickly got sidetracked (IM...or 
Address Book...or Filelink. Something came up.)

The project isn't very sexy - it's a lot of grunt work, but it might be 
something that a new contributor might feel safe doing.

This is, of course, assuming that we *must* use the command pattern to 
adopt the study. Attaching click handlers to every menuitem / button 
might be feasible - but I'm not sure what kind of powers TestPilot has 
for this kind of thing...and if Firefox didn't do it that way, it tells 
me that there's a problem with that approach.


On 20/09/2012 9:41 AM, Ludovic Hirlimann wrote:
> Was it two years ago the UI team for Firefox did a UI map of what user
> used and what they didn't.
> I have no idea how they did it (but I think they did it using some
> combination of code + Test-pilot). WOuld it be worth figuring that out
> so we could do the same to our users and thus try to make decisions
> backed-up by numbers ?
> Ludo

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