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Re: [PatternFly] modals and wizards -- should they be movable?



Greg has pointed to a great resource that highlights some of the disadvantages of a moveable dialog. Thanks for passing along! See: http://ux.stackexchange.com/questions/81134/should-modal-dialogs-be-movable

In particular, check out the section the highlights the following concerns: 

* Moving the modal requires a lot of cognitive load.
* If users are needing to move modals, this is usually the result of poor design. 
* User moves dialog partly/mostly offscreen. 
* User moves the dialog, and then resizes the browser window. The dialog may now be offscreen, so this case needs to be worked out.
* Scrolling ambiguity with responsive layouts. 

Matt hit on this second point when he said... 

If the concern is that it's covering content on the parent screen that the user needs in completing the task, then it seems like a modal is either the wrong solution or that information should be available from within the dialog. 

The intent of PatternFly is to provide common solutions that adhere to ux best practices and standards. If an application determines that a moveable dialog is a requirement, the best approach might be to add that functionality in their application vs it being introduced to PatternFly (given the design concerns and small percentage of need). 

Greg: In your use case, is important information being hidden? I'd be curious how else the user is being impacted. 

Best, 
Leslie



On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 7:03 PM, Liz Clayton <lclayton redhat com> wrote:
Hi,

On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 5:37 PM, Allie Jacobs <ajacobs redhat com> wrote:
I'm not sure if there's any harm other than the widget moving around unexpectedly.

I think there could be some harm if moving the modal around was a distraction that cost the user time and/or task focus.
 
But to Matt's point the use case for a modal would be one where the user should not be trying to interact with the base page.

Also echo'ing Matt's point - placing modal dialogs front & center, while blocking interaction with the background, demands attention and helps to convey the importance of the task. Being able to push it aside might minimize that.

Maybe the 5% use case could be better served by additional on screen help text or other contextual info.

Liz C
 
I would agree with updating PatternFly's modal documentation and possibly exploring a separate pattern for a moveable dialog. 

On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 4:46 PM, Mike Amburn <mamburn redhat com> wrote:
I’m curious… what’s the harm in allowing modals to be moved?

- allowing movement doesn’t alter the state of either the modal window or the background
- no harm for 95% of the time when a user wouldn’t need to see information in the background
- great benefit for the 5% that do
- keeps the info displayed in the modal focused on the 95% with a workaround for the 5%

No strong feelings either way, just thinking it through.


On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 3:20 PM, Liz Clayton <lclayton redhat com> wrote:
Hi,

On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 1:45 PM, Matt Carrano <mcarrano redhat com> wrote:
It's an interesting question, Greg.  IMO, the reason for using a modal dialog should be to focus the user's attention on completing the task at hand before doing something else in the UI.  So in working from that premise, it begs the question of why someone needs the dialog to be movable.  If the concern is that it's covering content on the parent screen that the user needs in completing the task, then it seems like a modal is either the wrong solution or that information should be available from within the dialog.
+1 

I'm also interested in what others think about this.  I wouldn't be in favor of making PatternFly modals movable unless there is a use case justification that we can point to.

I guess if any of the dialogs warranted being modeless instead, then allowing them to move would make sense. If not, then I agree that they shouldn't need to move. 

It might be helpful to have some documentation for the "modal" widget in Patternfly, that offered some usage best practices and clarify terms (modal, modeless, dialog, overlay...) I found this little writeup useful: https://uxplanet.org/5-essential-ux-rules-for-dialog-design-4de258c22116#.q1fizexrl

Liz C.

 
Matt

On Mon, Mar 20, 2017 at 12:57 PM, Greg Sheremeta <gshereme redhat com> wrote:
Hi all,

We recently implemented Patternfly styling on our modal dialogs, and instantly received a bug [1] about them no longer being draggable. According to a quick search, bootstrap's modals do not support dragging, but that functionality could be added with jquery-ui [2]. According to [3], it's not a great idea.

oVirt is quite modal-dialog heavy, so I can see why users would want this. We are in the planning stages of moving away from having so many dialogs, so I'm not terribly worried about it. But I did think it was a good idea to ask the list.

So, what do people think about draggable modals?

Best wishes,
Greg

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Matt Carrano
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