Justin du Coeur (jducoeur) wrote,
Justin du Coeur

How much should Querki establish *conventions*?

Okay, here's a broad question, looking for thoughts -- it's about Querki, but it isn't deeply technical.

I'm pondering the medium-term UI for Create Space. Currently, you just give the Name of the Space, but there's lots more metadata that we should be encouraging folks to enter in that window, including a less sucktastic UI for security (I believe we can boil the most common use cases down into a couple of radio-button sets), and an optional public description of the Space. (Eventually, Public Spaces will be listed on your Profile page.) This got me thinking about what the name of the Property should be for the public description. And of course, the obvious answer is, "Description".

I've been shying away from using simple descriptive Property names like that, in the interest of leaving the namespace (which, remember, is global across a given Space) as clean as possible for end users. But I wonder if that's the wrong way to look at it. It's very "programmer-y" to think that you should absolutely minimize the reserved words, but I'm beginning to suspect that a typical user would actually find it helpful to have a toolbox of consistent Properties, that are predefined so that we at least *tend* to have some consistency from Space to Space, instead of thinking of each one as its own special snowflake that you have to build from scratch.

I'm not thinking of anything terribly deep, just some extremely broad-strokes Properties that you can apply to any Thing or Model as seems appropriate. Specific examples that have already come up include:

-- Summary: a short Text Property, intended to be a one-line description of something.
-- Details: the counterpart to Summary, a Large Text that goes into more detail.
-- Description: technically similar to Details, but with a connotation that is somewhere in-between. More than a Summary, less than Details.

etc. I wouldn't go too hog-wild with these, but I suspect it would actually be helpful for me to just define some at the system level, use them myself and make them available for folks to use. I'd take things like the "Property Summary" Property, and switch that to just use the more broadly-defined "Summary" instead. Indeed, that was one of the inspirations here -- instead of having "Property Summary", "Type Summary", and so on, it seems to make more sense to just have a general "Summary" Property, that anyone can use.

(Technical note: this wouldn't technically consume namespace -- in theory, Spaces can override Names from Apps, so you could redefine "Summary" in your own Space if you wanted. But the intent is that 99% of the time, you would just use these standard Properties as-is.)

Opinions? This is one of those places where habits of a platform are different from those of a user-centric service, and Querki has aspects of both, so I'm not quite sure where to come down on it...
Tags: conventions

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