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Carret for Notebook and Tags in SideBar

Feature proposal

There's not anymore UI feedback indicating the node is open or not

image

What I propose is to put it back

image

Version

Joplin 1.3.18 (prod, win32)

Client ID: fd3d3937ee5f4b8897f1bd1ea4fc22e4
Sync Version: 2
Profile Version: 34
Keychain Supported: Yes

Revision: 6b75485a1 (master)

Remarks

I'm digging slowly into the code and I thought this small feature could be interresting and very trivial to implement as far as I can see.

I'm posting this feature request here to see if it can be a candidate. If this is validated, I'll file a ticket and send a PR.

1 Like

I don't think carrets are necessary, because it is always clear when they are expanded/collapsed. If one can see folders/tags, they are expanded.

There don't have to be additional indicators that tell me what I already know. The only effect this change has is that all notebooks and tags are moved to the right (the number of pixels used for the carret plus indentation).

IMO, it's a waste of my precious screen real estate.

I need the feedback indicating the state of the node (notebooks or tags) to free up a little of my memory. I want to be able to forget the state of the node and use this memory for my real work.

If I close the node notebooks or tags and I put my eyes back to the side menu after a while, I don't understand why my notebooks have been deleted. I need to use some of my limited brain time to remember that 1) it is a node, 2) that is closed and 3) I have to expand it. It is almost nothing but after a while it can erode a little of my concentration.

@tessus: If I have to use your metaphor, my precious real estate is my brain and I can only use it for a limited amount of time before it needs another break. And I'm sure my concentration capacity will deplete before your 4k screen will run out of pixels :slight_smile:

All this is just based on my feelings, but I have the intuition a lot of people are like me. It would be very nice if a designer come into this discussion.

Another issue is when a user has not tags, then at some point collapses the Tag header. Later when they add tags they won't appear in the list and it won't be clear why. Also true in rare cases where a user has no notebooks. And indeed there's the case where the user might collapse a header without noticing it, and later wonder why all their notebooks or tags are gone.

In any case it's always good UI to indicate the state of a component. I think your proposition is nearly there but it needs a few tweaks to make indentation consistent. Tessus also makes a good point that we should make sure not to lose too much white space because of it, so it might be a matter of reducing padding or widths of certain components.

What about a small vertical coloured bar which can be placed at the edge and takes up far less space? See horrible mockup for an example
.joplinbars
(Thinking about it I should have done them in the Font/icon colour but you get the idea...)

I don't mind the addition on the caret, especially if it is customizable with a CSS class. I would recommend:

  • using the darker color instead of white
  • only changing the indent of this label, not pushing all the sub folders over (I see you had it like this in your proposal here, but wanted to call it out) I think this would address @tessus real estate issue?

One other idea I'd like to add – and it might solve this issue of "mental real estate" in a different way – is to have a count of items next to the type. So "Notebooks (25)" or "Tags (130)". This would remind you that something is there, even when it is collapsed.

The idea of the count next to the type is interesting, but I don't know how it feels: I'll make a test drive.