Hey, Jive Customers! I'd like to share some of the UI improvements we made in the latest Cloud release, which is coming in a few short weeks. We made some big improvements to the visual style of the application, on top of a bunch of new features, and we're very excited to get the Spring Cloud release in everyone's hands!
A more modern style
For nearly a year now the Design team has been working to redesign the platform, which has visual design roots dating back four years ago. Our aim is to evolve the platform to a more modern, clean and light style. We're establishing a design direction where the focus of a page is on the purpose of that page, and trimming back any unnecessary visual elements that otherwise detract from that page's purpose.
With that in mind, and with longer term goals that we'll continue to roll out in future releases, we took a big pass at this new style across the application in the Spring release.
The common patterns you'll see in all of the screenshots below for the updated visual style include:
- Removal of extraneous borders, shadows, gradients, etc
- Adding round avatar support to the Theming Tool (the default theme has them applied for new instances)
- Removal of black/dark borders to menus, dialogs, etc.
- Subtle adjustments to element spacing to increase legibility & scanability
Show and tell
Below are some examples of this new style you'll see starting in a few weeks when we roll out the Spring cloud update. Included are current screenshots for comparison and posterity. It's also worth mentioning that we tested the new visual style out with some of our customers' themes and they just work a lot better, out of the box.
Here we removed extraneous borders, gradients, and even icons so the emphasis and focus on the stream itself, while still retaining all the features that the stream has today.
Example of the Content browser (list mode). Again, we streamlined a lot of the visual elements and reduced clutter.
Similar to Content above, but showing the card mode.
In order to keep the emphasis of content items on the content itself, elements in the right column were dialed back and made more consistent. This helps to really focus the eye on the Document. Also in the screenshot is a new feature we added for content authors, new 'Alerts' (Success, Information, Warning, Danger) and 'Flags' (New, Updated).
Groups & Spaces (aka Places).
Here we tightened up the header and navigation spacing and alignment, but we also laid the foundation for some major functionality which we're going to continue to work on in the Fall and Winter releases: Pages.
Pages are the new "Overview" (widget-based) page we've had for many years, based instead on our Tile technology. Why are Tiles better than widgets? First, they can be developed by you (or your developers) to tap into other applications your businesses already use, can be installed at any time independent from Cloud release cycles, and because they separate the data from the presentation they're upgrade safe.
This feature is currently beta and will not be enabled by default in the Spring release, but can be enabled in the admin console if you'd like to check it out.
Similar to Place headers above, some adjustments to the Profile to align with the overall update to the new visual style.
Menus, Dialogs, and content creation.
We've removed the heavy black borders around our menus and dialogs. These seemingly small adjustments change the overall tone and mood of the application, even if it goes mostly unnoticed.
There's a new feature to point out for the user 'hover card' tool tip: The profile data is now configurable!
Also, in the text editor we've improved the default color palettes and table styles so the user-created content looks better.
Other new features in the Spring Cloud release
There are a few other features that we added as well, which I won't get into detail here other than to show in brief here as they relate to the overall visual redesign.
'In Progress' action
A new content action was created to help alleviate update conflicts with Uploaded Files, allowing a user to mark their uploaded spreadsheet as "In Progress" to let other users know to not upload / overwrite the file. It prompts other users on Edit to confirm they want to take control and edit the Uploaded File.
Non-member content editing
When enabled on a private Group, users can invite other non-member users via the Share function to participate on content w/o becoming a full member of the private Group (example use case: an ongoing discussion in a private project, and suddenly you realize you need to bring in someone from another team into the conversation). When a non-member is added, a banner appears to group members so they know that the content is visible to non-members.
Follow Tags in your Custom Streams!
And last (but not least) we've added support to follow Tags in your Custom Streams! It's no longer just about who and where you're interested in following, but what!
That's a lot, yeah? Well, we've got more goodness coming throughout the rest of this year (and beyond), so stay tuned. We're sure this is going to make a positive impact on our customers and all of our users. Even the subtle adjustments can make a big impact on the overall impression of the product, and we're really excited.
Hope you've all enjoyed the peek at the visual update coming in the Spring Cloud release!