EmailDiscussions.com  

Go Back   EmailDiscussions.com > Email Service Provider-specific Forums > FastMail Forum
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Stay in touch wirelessly

FastMail Forum All posts relating to FastMail.FM should go here: suggestions, comments, requests for help, complaints, technical issues etc.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 19 Jun 2017, 08:44 AM   #1
hans2010
Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 30
Style sheet "Concise" (in Classic)

I may be in the minority here, but I like the "Concise" style sheet in Classic.

To cut to the chase: If anyone would like to see a "Concise" theme in the new interface, I suggest you submit a support ticket.

MORE DETAILS

I've been using FastMail Classic with "Concise" style sheet for several years (previously using the Classic, no-Ajax UI in Yahoo Mail Plus), and it has worked well for me. I like the color scheme and overall layout, and, being a "road warrior", I use an ultraportable with limited screen space and find that "Concise" works well in a constrained space.

In May, I submitted my suggestion to add "Concise" to the new interface via the "classicfeedback" address noted in the Transition Guide (linked from the Classic login page). I didn't get a response, so I submitted a support ticket in June. The response to that says that there's not much demand for the Concise theme, and input from customers factors into prioritization of requests.

So, please submit a support ticket if you're interested in the Concise theme. As someone said:
Quote:
Originally Posted by BritTim View Post
A senior member of FastMail's staff has suggested support requests as the best way of making them aware of improvements sought by users.
Apparently, there are at least some people who use and like the Concise style sheet, and I'm including some comments from them below. I agree wholeheartedly with Tosca's comments about the look and feel, and, as an ultraportable user, I think it's worth noting the comments from NumberSix and Labarum about compactness and the needs of users on ultraportables.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tosca View Post
I love the concise interface which is so easy on my eyes. The yellow breaks up the monotone of the grey and blue and for me makes navigating around much quicker and easier.

With the new interface and utterly boring color, I find after using it for a few weeks that it is very tiring on the eyes. The little yellow icons at each folder were a big plus as are the yellow buttons.

Simply said, the new interface is lacking contrast which would make it far more user friendly and easier.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tosca View Post
I really like the colour scheme of the Concise theme. With this new one, it's boring with the wanna-b-gmail look. Colour always helps sort things visually much faster.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NumberSix View Post
the new themes all waste an outrageous amount of vertical space between folder names in the list. In Classic I use the "concise" theme, which is extremely compact. I love this (and although I'm not a fan of that color scheme, I've tolerated it because of the highly efficient use of real estate).
Quote:
Originally Posted by ulmus View Post
I am using so called 'classic ui' for years with very tight compressed 'concise' style. Will calendar be in the classic or only in new UI?

Please, dont forget about 'classic' users... enhanced users like me
Quote:
Originally Posted by labarum View Post
I'm guessing it was designed on a 27" iMac.

Some of use run ultraportables. Our needs are different.

All the current stylesheets, less Concise, are the same with different colours - that's no choice at all.
Quote:
Originally Posted by labarum View Post
I use Fastmail on an 11.5" laptop - the only stylesheet that I can now comfortably use is "Concise" with a little browser zoom - well all the other stylesheets are the same but with different colours.

My next purchase will be the new ARM Chromebook with 11.5" screen and I will continue for the time being to use Fastmail Classic instead of Gmail.

I cannot be the only customer who will want to use Fastmail on an 11" laptop or 10" tablet.

Fastmail would be wise to think of the needs of such customers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by OliverD View Post
I have noticed some recent improvements to the icons and buttons with FastMail's concise style sheet so they do appear to be listening.
hans2010 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 19 Jun 2017, 09:08 AM   #2
Terry
The "e" in e-mail
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: VK4
Posts: 2,490
It would be much nicer if they retained the classic UI

It's pointless doing a support ticket as all you will get the same script reply that everyone else gets.
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19 Jun 2017, 09:12 AM   #3
labarum
Essential Contributor
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: UK and Cyprus
Posts: 395
The Large Font Theme in the new interface addressed the issues I raised about using Fastmail on a small screen.

There may, however, be value in reintroducing a wider range of styles in the new interface.
labarum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19 Jun 2017, 11:18 AM   #4
hans2010
Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
It would be much nicer if they retained the classic UI
I agree, as I'm not a fan of heavy JavaScript and related things (like Ajax). For one thing, you're less likely to get meaningful and timely error messages when the connection is flaky (as you would when using a non-JS interface).

Quote:
It's pointless doing a support ticket as all you will get the same script reply that everyone else gets.
I'm sure you'll get a non-committal response if they haven't yet committed to the feature (I'm guessing you'd do the same thing). But I'm not as certain as you seem to be that user feedback is pointless. What I'm more certain about is that with zero user feedback, the chances of getting the feature in question is zero. Therefore, I stand by my earlier suggestion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by labarum View Post
The Large Font Theme in the new interface addressed the issues I raised about using Fastmail on a small screen.
I just tried it. I'm seeing the same number of items in the folder list, and the same number of items in the message list, as I see with the other themes. The difference is that since the font is larger, there is less white space between list items. While that might give a similar "feel" as Concise, it does nothing to fit more information on a limited-size screen. That would be accomplished by using the same size (or smaller) font as the other themes, while reducing the white space between list items (which is what Concise does).

Quote:
There may, however, be value in reintroducing a wider range of styles in the new interface.
The Transition Guide says that a "dark" theme is coming soon (prior to the Classic cutoff), in response to user feedback. We'll have to wait and see what it is. If it's something like the Classic "infinite blackness" theme, I probably won't be using it.

One thing that would help is if users could choose the colors in any of the themes.
hans2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19 Jun 2017, 02:09 PM   #5
labarum
Essential Contributor
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: UK and Cyprus
Posts: 395
Quote:
Originally Posted by hans2010 View Post
I just tried it. [Large Font] I'm seeing the same number of items in the folder list, and the same number of items in the message list, as I see with the other themes. The difference is that since the font is larger, there is less white space between list items. While that might give a similar "feel" as Concise, it does nothing to fit more information on a limited-size screen. That would be accomplished by using the same size (or smaller) font as the other themes, while reducing the white space between list items (which is what Concise does).
What happens if you use browser zoom? Does that allow you to tune the theme to your taste? I do agree however, that some adjustment of line spacing would be useful. Some may prefer not to have a line between each row of text. That is unnecessary clutter. Much could be learned from the clean lines of Microsoft's Outlook.com.

Last edited by labarum : 19 Jun 2017 at 02:27 PM.
labarum is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19 Jun 2017, 03:19 PM   #6
BritTim
The "e" in e-mail
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: mostly in Thailand
Posts: 2,480
Quote:
Originally Posted by hans2010 View Post
I just tried it. I'm seeing the same number of items in the folder list, and the same number of items in the message list, as I see with the other themes.
While I sympathize, I can imagine that in the current interface this could not be solved simply with CSS changes, but would involve Javascript changes and also changes in the backend. This would be doable, of course, but needs the developers to agree it is important. If my sense of what is involved is correct, this is a fair bit of work.
BritTim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 19 Jun 2017, 04:01 PM   #7
hans2010
Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by labarum View Post
What happens if you use browser zoom? Does that allow you to tune the theme to your taste? I do agree however, that some adjustment of line spacing would be useful. Some may prefer not to have a line between each row of text. That is unnecessary clutter. Much could be learned from the clean lines of Microsoft's Outlook.com.
Hmm, I didn't know until now that Firefox has a browser zoom. So, I tried it. It looks like the closest approximation we can get to the classic "Concise" theme is to select "Large Font" theme along with "System font", and set browser zoom to 90%. Now, if there were a way to select colors, that would just about do it. (But having to set browser zoom every time I login to email is a bit annoying.)

However, there's an issue with how headers are displayed. I need to see the "To:" header of each message, because I use a lot of aliases and I need to see what alias each message came in on. In "Large Font" I have to click "Show details", meaning an extra action for every single message I read (which is a lot). Because of this, I'll probably wind up using the so-called "Classic" theme, which displays the headers by default. In that case, I won't be using browser zoom because the font would be too tiny. Sigh... so much for "Concise".

There's an additional issue that the new interface either shows too much header info or not enough. As I mentioned above, the terse version doesn't show me the "To:" address (and I also want to see the full "Date:" header), while the verbose version (via "Show details", or by using the so-called "Classic" theme) takes up extra screen real estate by displaying the Subject twice, the From address twice, the recipient's "real name" twice, and also the Size (which I don't need to see except on the message list page). The classic "Concise" theme displayed the header information exactly as it should, with everything I need to see, and no redundancy.

And that's another reason why I find the classic "Concise" theme superior to anything in the new interface. I really don't understand why they'd allow problems like the above to crop up when those problems had already been solved in the previous implementation. Having worked in the software industry, and knowing the situation with employee turnover, I can only guess that the designers of classic left the company and took with them their rationale for the various design decisions they made.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BritTim View Post
While I sympathize, I can imagine that in the current interface this could not be solved simply with CSS changes, but would involve Javascript changes and also changes in the backend. This would be doable, of course, but needs the developers to agree it is important. If my sense of what is involved is correct, this is a fair bit of work.
Understood. And this reveals the disadvantage of UI design that is based heavily on JavaScript, Ajax, CSS, and the like. Things that were straightforward in the past, and were actually solved in the past, become difficult or intractable problems. Sure, you get snazzy advantages (like pre-fetch of data, immediate notification of new mail, etc., etc.), but that's at the expense of breaking what used to work in the past, and it tends to benefit only a subset of users who are within certain usage cases (who work a certain way, who have a large screen, who have a rock-solid high-bandwidth connection, etc.). The trend is for companies to focus only on that limited set of use cases and not on the wider spectrum of customers (for example, road warriors with ultraportables, like me). That's kind of a shame (well, for me, anyway).

Bottom line, for the various reasons stated above, I seem to have would up in the camp of those who see the transition out of classic as "one step forward, two steps back."
hans2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT +9. The time now is 10:27 AM.

 

Copyright EmailDiscussions.com 1998-2013. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy