Usability issue: Screen width

Usability issue:

The main window is often too wide for the display, especially on the Sales Invoice screen, and especially when certain additional fields are displayed like Tax and item Codes.


Allow the side navigation bar to collapse, or move some of the right-side fields to the left so they are visible without scrolling horizontally


I would allow the left navigation bar to collapse as you don’t really need to see the LHS navigation once you are in an invoice etc.

Yeah, collapsing left navigation if screen width is not sufficient is nice idea. I’m planning to re-organize layout a bit when in editing mode so that could shave off some screen estate too. Will see.

I disagree strongly. No matter what I am doing, whether entering or just looking up data, when finished I want to be able to jump directly to the next task. I would find it incredibly aggravating to have to first re-expand the navigation pane. I’ve always thought of the navigation pane’s constant availability as one of Manager’s best features.

I am also not sympathetic, in general, to complaints about screen width. There will always be someone with a narrower or smaller screen, or who’s eyesight or viewing preferences suggest an expanded view, who will wish everything fit on one line to eliminate scrolling. Let’s face it, scrolling is a fact of life with windows-based (lower case) computer applications. Tabbing between fields already eliminates most need to use the mouse.

I didn’t say that collapsing the screen menu was the only option and it would not necessarily be applicable in all situations as I also like having the left hand menu easily available. So it would actually depend on the view. Such as if you are viewing, keep the left hand bar and if you are editing, collapse the left hand bar!

Its clear that you do not use a Windows @Tut as left to right scrolling is only an issue in Manager. I don’t know of any other program on Windows where I need to scroll left to right to view the entire screen. Manager is the only program where I experience this issue even on a 21 inch screen.

So the complaints about it are perfectly valid given that pretty much no other windows app does this. I also think that you need to be aware that just because something does not personally bother you does not mean its not an issue.

I do consider that the fact that I have a 21 inch monitor and I still have to scroll left to right in Manager - and no other Windows program does this means that the layout needs to be addressed at some point in time as the screen view should not be dependent on a specific screen size.

However, @lubos I would rather you focused on your current roadmap as I would like to see the budgeting fucntionality built in as well as the promised improvements in inventory as I consider these to be of higher importance.

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I don’t know what to say, @dalacor. I have to routinely scroll left/right when working complex spreadsheets, whether on a Windows or Mac machine. Same with Word, depending on page size and orientation, view scale, and window size. I use the same size monitor you do, but often have multiple windows open, between which I move data or text. That frequently produces the need to scroll. I actually do it less in Manager than in other applications, because I’m not generally transferring information to/from Manager. But we should take any further discussion of this offline. :grinning:

What’s your screen resolution?

I use 1280*1024 which admittedly is not the highest resolution supported by the monitor but I find if I make the resolution higher, I find it difficult to read the text on my screen in any program.

However, even at 1280*1024 I am still having to scroll left and right in some screens and I don’t have to do this in any other program, apart from spreadsheets, but thats a completely different scenario entirely.

Spreadsheets are not a fair comparison, because its not a form or a view like a web browser page or a word document (unless you are not viewing word document in a4 size at 100% resolution). Naturally I would expect to scroll if you have zoomed in 300% like I do in Serif Page Plus when I want to zoom in on a particular part of the drawing.

The issue with Manager is on some screens you have to scroll left and right and others you don’t and it seems to be more to do with a fixed pixel size rather than using 100% screen real estate. For example with my website I have designed the website to display on screen with no left right scrolling whether you are viewing on my computer, on an iphone or a tablet - the view is the same in the sense that you only have to scroll up and down.

Anyway, it doesn’t really bother me that much as I would rather that Lubos spent time adding budgeting functionality and sorting out the inventory and warehousing aspects. I just mention that I don’t really notice any other program that requires me to scroll left and right unless using spreadsheets which is designed to work from left to right and top to bottom. And obviously if you zoom in on any aspect in word, serif page plus or any zoom requirement.

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I’m also at 1280 x 1024, quite common for office monitors. Widescreen monitors are of course becoming increasingly common, but the install base of 1280 x 1024 is still huge.

I agree the ability to collapse the navigation side bar would be beneficial to those of us who cannot view the whole invoice at once. I would like to be able to do that.

I also would like to have some means of seeing the whole width of various images. I need to insert code or reference numbers and these are typically well off to the left, so have to move image each time I am one of the screens that is too wide.

hey why dont you use icons (for example same style as so when you collapse the left bar you see only this? (thats a fast draft)

and when mouse pointer hover a button a transparent text box appears.

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This has already been suggested quite some time ago. See my earlier posting and mock up (eerily similar to yours!), as well as @Lubos’s response of why this isn’t going to happen a few messages down:

I still think the suggestion by zark or whatever his name is in the other post about getting rid of a lot of the stuff in the top rows as they are not frequently utilised items and using that retail space for the LHS Menu as great merit.

Actually in that thread I was replying to @Dalacor proposing something else.

The idea of collapsing left navigation horizontally so labels are hidden is good and I will be definitively adding it as an option possibly by end of this month.


Yes I agree that frames is not actually a good idea upon further discussion, so I withdraw that endorsement. However, I feel that @Zark suggestion and of moving default tabs that are applicable to all businesses to the top area of Manager because this solves a number of problems. The top area of Manager is not being well utilised as the current tabs are very infrequently if ever used and this would be far better used by more default tabs like summary screen, reports etc.

Having said, that, collapsing the menu might be a good option in certain views of the program, but I would look at both options together.

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While @dalacor’s observation about the top area is correct, it overlooks an underlying principle of Manager’s interface. The top menu bar includes general tabs linking to businesses, users, preferences, guides, this forum, etc. In other words, that menu bar is about the application, including the Back button which returns you to a previous page viewed in the application. All the tabs in the left-hand navigation pane are relevant to an individual business. Mixing and matching would be counter-intuitive. Yes, more things could be packed into smaller display space, but at what cost?

Yes I understand the top tabs are system wide and the LHS is business specific. I am not suggesting mixing and matching, but a complete redesign of the way space is used because as many people have mentioned the top space is largely wasted and can be utilised better. I am not suggesting mixing and matching as your point has been made by several people including Lubos. That does not mean that a better way to utilise screen space can’t be found.