Beta Feedback - http://preview.addons.mozilla.org
This page is for consolidation of the feedback on the new AMO Beta. If you're more comfortable filing bugs, you're welcome to do that instead.
- Changing text size results in bad layout. Ways to correct this: #otherAlso should specify min-width rather than width; class .addon has a background image of addon-tr.png - the vertical size of this image is not very big, so it quickly results in missing borders when text size is increased a fraction.
- Unfortunately #otherAlso has been taken out of the flow and is absolutely positioned resulting in it overlapping other content at non-default text sizes.
These sort of problems also tend to present themselves at higher DPI - have you tested at 120dpi?
- The title "Firefox Addons" should be an H1, not an H2 so that search engines will pick it up. At the moment, the H1 is an image saying "mozilla" - not really something a search engine would find... Also, I'm not sure why font sizes and font colors are specified for that H1 given that it only contains an image.
- A meta description would give a search engine something to pull off the page.
Even at normal font size, URLs in the body text of the addon description break out of the .addon class container. This looks bad. You could give the addon class a overflow:hidden but that's usually unsatisfactory. Gecko still doesn't implement text-overflow:ellipsis (bug #312156) or word-wrap (bug #99457) so the only other option is to inject
The "Other applications" control partially obscures "My account" and "Logout".
It's rather unobvious that adding a rating/review for an extension requires you to be logged in. I'd highly recommend adding a one-line note above the submit button for not-logged in users saying something like "requires registration", or you'll risk pissing off would be commenters who don't want to go through the trouble of registering yet another account.
It seems that there is no simple way to specify the Firefox version and OS the extensions shown should be compatible with. Nor is this information shown anywhere in the lists. This results in the rather frustrating situation that one might have to browse through a long list of extensions only to detect when trying to install the extension that it is not compatible with your browser. This problem gets even worse if somebody just wants to download an extension for a different browser (e.g. when an administrator running Linux prepares software and extensions for a Windows installation).
Especially for the launch of Firefox 3.0 this will be important as otherwise people will have too much difficulty in finding FF3.0 enabled extensions/themes.
There should be some form that allows a more advanced search, especially the specification of a FF version and/or OS that the addon must be compatible with. Other advanced search features should be an option to exclude or include "experimental" addons or limit the extensions to those of specific authors.
Usability / UI revisions
- People who are used to the term "themes" (existing users) are having difficulty finding them in the current hierarchy.
- Potential solution: Finish changing the name of the category from "Interface Customizations" to "Themes & Appearance"
- There's inconsistency between what down-arrows mean on menu headers (there's a drop-down menu available here) vs. what they mean on "Add to Firefox" buttons (up for debate! "down"load?)
- Potential solution: remove the down arrow from the "Add to Firefox" buttons. The arrow doesn't really have much useful semantic meaning -- it doesn't really convey "add to firefox" -- so it's really just clutter.
- The issue of not knowing whether a given add-on is compatible with your version of Firefox/other application is a big deal
- Listing stuff from the sandbox (experimental) by default is not useful, since even if the person goes to the trouble of creating an account in order to access it there is no useful status information such as when it was created, how long its been in a queue or what version it is compatible with. Why not only list experimental add-ons if the person is logged in?
- Clicking on a category button such as "security and privacy" for Thunderbird add-ons gives three add-ons, in vertical columns. This is hard to read, and unexpected. Its also hard to browse all of the entries for this category since thats not one of the choices in the "see all privacy and security" box. Whats wrong with alphabetical sorting as a choice? If nothing else sometimes a user has a rough idea of the name and wants to try to find it via browsing rather than searching.
- If the user is navigating add-ons or themes for a specific application only add-ons and themes for that application should be shown. For example, in the Thunderbird add-ons privacy and security category the first page shows the Hip Hop Radio Extension for Firefox. Thats experimental and Firefox specific.
- If I search for the Lightning extension while running Firefox under Linux it has a "Download Now (Windows)" button for that extension. This is confusing as all of the other add-ons have "Download Now" and it choose the wrong platform when it tried to be helpful. If I click on the entry it shows separate download links for each platform. However, if I look at some other extension such as ltnPlus it uses "Download Now" both in the summary and when I click on the entry. Behavior needs to be more consistent and predictable.
- There should be more consistency in categories among the different products. Firefox has interface customizations and toolbars, which are generic enough they would be useful in Thunderbird and probably other applications. Firefox has "other" while Thunderbird has "miscellaneous", whats the difference? Firefox has "photos, music and media" while SeaMonkey has "photos and media", why are they different?
- Looking at the number of categories (14 for firefox, 11 for SeaMonkey, 6 for Thunderbird, 3 for sunbird) one gets the impression some applications are not first class citizens. You would expect SeaMonkey to have the same categories (or more since its really a superset) as Firefox. Obvious categories such as Spam are missing for Thunderbird and SeaMonkey.
- Other web sites (for example Amazon) adapt recommendations for the user, and let you provide feedback to tailor the recommendations. If I look at the Firefox recommendations the first item is Zotero, something for automatic capture of citation information from web pages. Thats not exactly mainstream :) It has 5 reviews and 13,126 downloads, which doesn't sound like much. Its not one of the "featured" add-ons. Its not obvious why it was chosen, or that its tailored for me.
- There isn't any information to help deal with abandoned add-ons. For example, Frank DiLecce has written a lot of popular extensions. His web site is long gone, he is no longer using the mozillaZine forums, he hasn't updated his extensions for years, and nobody has been able to contact him for years. Its not clear whats the legal status of his extensions, which prevents anybody from taking over their maintenance.
- Searching for Noia (for the Noia themes) returns three entries. Two of them have identical names - Noia 2.0 eXtreme. You have to click on each entry to see that one is version 2.36 and one is version 3.0. That information should have been shown on the entry (the summary).
- Many add-ons require the user to figure out how to bypass the version check. If the add-on causes problems they sometimes need to use safe mode to let them access the menu to disable or uninstall the add-on. This information isn't available in the applications help. It would help if the web site provided some generic installation help for add-ons, even if all they did was provide links to a few SUMO and mozillaZine KB articles.
- The web page for Foxmarks Bookmark Synchronizer 2.0.43 displays three images (under "More Images") as three vertical lines. If you try to display any of them you get an error message about it can not be displayed because it contains errors.
- The date of release for addons and themes should be visible when browsing.
Search Results Page
The SRP should support sorting and filtering of the search results, similar to the sorting options already available on the "browse extension by category" page. Filtering can filter results by specific product/version/locale ... See bug 401136 for details.