New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

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Specular
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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#16 Post by Specular » Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:38 am

Checked out the proof of concept site. Organized it better than I'd expected :)

It's interesting seeing the de-emphasis on download links coming from the site's existing DBs, almost a shock :P I wonder what the user engagement of command-based vs tool-based site would be, as I kind of feel (particularly for CLI programs) the recipe idea might be a more popular approach given many searches for CLI-based programs center around usage (with all their disparate argument naming conventions, less familiarity with the command-line etc).

Still think there may be an outcome where some recipes would essentially make it a docs page for a particular program. Eg: downloading a video considerably narrows limits which viable programs to use, with youtube-dl being the foremost and most likely for recipe creation, and with all of ytdl's features it wouldn't be surprising to see dozens of recipes that would be essentially straight out of its readme---yet no doubt useful.

That said, the above isn't the worst thing that could happen so I'm still open minded about it and I like the idea of introducing people to practical examples of CLI usage.

Something to consider may be caveats to CLI usage somewhere: like such-and-such a program lacks Unicode support, or whatnot. For CMD itself for example there are numerous gotchas with path name parsing and also a hard limit on the max string/variable length that can be passed to/handled by it (relevant more for batch scripting).

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Midas
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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#17 Post by Midas » Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:02 am

Here's my mockup as promised, based on what I see from this end and the best I could come up with.

A few notes about this proposal:

- The solution itself is given prominence in the solution entry, since after the first contact this is what returning users are likely to be seeking first.

- Social features come right after because they'll help users in deciding whether or not they'll want to try a particular solution.

- On a possible compact view option (similar to the one currently available in TPFC's main site) only the teal sub-header and these two rows (example and social metadata) would be displayed, in which case the user should be given the option to individually expand any or all of them.

- Solutions would always appear grouped by the main header ("Rename different images..." in my example), even if they could be applied in other situations -- in which case they'd be duplicated in as many entries as needed.

- The order of appearance of the solutions should be based on the social score (my mock-up is obviously wrong in this aspect, since the ExifTool solution has 20 hearts and the jhead one only has ten). In case of having no score, freshness could be used, i.e., a more recent one would appear first.

- Note the display of the significant ID to the right of all entries; this would be permalinked and allow for easy referral in other solutions (I didn't see a need to reflect hierarchy in these IDs but maybe you'll think otherwise).

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Andrew Lee
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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#18 Post by Andrew Lee » Fri Jan 08, 2021 3:54 am

Thanks for your feedback and Midas' mockup. There are a few things I can easily incorporate into the current mockup.

The current mockup already sorts by social score in the "Task" view, and freshness in the "Solutions list" view, so we are on the same page in this regard.

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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#19 Post by Midas » Fri Jan 08, 2021 4:40 am

Further cosmetic note: the mockup's readability gets impaired when shrunk to a viewport less than ~1010 pixels across... to make good for portable devices I reckon it should be viewable in at least 720 pixels, in which case the left sidebar would be hidden in the so-called "hamburger menu" button.

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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#20 Post by Andrew Lee » Mon Jan 11, 2021 2:08 am

OK, I think I have implemented all the suggestions and bug fixes. Let me know if I missed anything.

There are 2 items I'd like to discuss:
Midas wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:02 am
- Solutions would always appear grouped by the main header ("Rename different images..." in my example), even if they could be applied in other situations -- in which case they'd be duplicated in as many entries as needed.
Just to confirm, this is already the current behaviour. The main list displays all the individual solutions (newest first). The task header will tell you if there are other solutions for this task. If you click through to the task view, all the solutions for the task will be displayed.
Midas wrote:
Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:02 am
- Note the display of the significant ID to the right of all entries; this would be permalinked and allow for easy referral in other solutions (I didn't see a need to reflect hierarchy in these IDs but maybe you'll think otherwise).
So I have made the ids a 6-digit affair. But no matter how I tried, I can't make showing the IDs nice, esp. in the main listing. If you can direct me to a site that does this, maybe I can copy their design. In the mean time, I have moved the permalink for the solution to the tab, but left the task header alone.

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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#21 Post by Midas » Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:39 am

Sorry for the late reply, but I had to check stuff and ended up delaying till now.

Andrew Lee wrote:Just to confirm, this is already the current behaviour. The main list displays all the individual solutions (newest first). The task header will tell you if there are other solutions for this task. If you click through to the task view, all the solutions for the task will be displayed.
Correct. I just expected that to be the general display mode. Now I see it's by design. I'm OK with that.

Andrew Lee wrote:So I have made the ids a 6-digit affair. But no matter how I tried, I can't make showing the IDs nice, esp. in the main listing. If you can direct me to a site that does this, maybe I can copy their design. In the mean time, I have moved the permalink for the solution to the tab, but left the task header alone.
It's fine. I'm partial to explicit IDs, but I couldn't find any good example of them in a web design.

Best I can do is still point to StackOverflow (e.g., https://stackoverflow.com/questions/8318911/) where every question and answer gets an (implicit) 7-digit ID, while every users' ID is 6-digit. URLs have an explicit text tail, but the ID is enough to point to the answer/user, thus doubling as a shorter URL.

Minor suggestion: CMD icon would make more sense with ">_" instead of the current ">-"...

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Andrew Lee
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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#22 Post by Andrew Lee » Thu Jan 14, 2021 3:04 am

Midas wrote:
Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:39 am
Minor suggestion: CMD icon would make more sense with ">_" instead of the current ">-"...
Done!

Having spent some time with the prototype, maybe I will roast myself. :D

I have been trying to translate some of the CLI submissions (FileList, csvtk, Exiftool etc.) into the tasks/solutions -based format, and it does feel more "unnatural". Sometimes I don't know where to begin because a CLI tool have so many different options, and I am not sure I am doing the tool justice when I just pick one aspect and be done with it.

But I also do not want to enter many different solutions just to highlight one CLI tool. So just flat out describing the tool and what it can potentially do in vague language can be quite "liberating", if you know what I mean...

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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#23 Post by Specular » Sat Jan 16, 2021 2:39 pm

It'd probably be more straightforward to go with the tool based approach, given some of the logical drawbacks. That said it could go with a bit of a hybrid in showing some examples of usage in the entries. Perhaps similar to the way screenshots are collapsed by default in some PFDB entries, appearing near the top, code examples could be contained in such an expandable element.

While looking through ImageMagick commands for something recently it also occurred to me that in various recipe scenarios values that have relationships with other values would be hard to show succinctly in code (and further that ImageMagick syntax differs between v6 vs v7). Eg: for some commands with IM to add text captions it's related to the dimensions of the image in order to set coordinates else the text can be out of frame but it mightn't be obvious to a reader that relationship just using fixed values or even placeholders without a further description (though given one can clarify it in that way maybe it's not such a big deal).

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Re: New suggestion for CLI database - Roast me!

#24 Post by Andrew Lee » Sun Jan 17, 2021 1:29 am

I had similar thoughts.. there are certain things that doesn't quite fit with CLIs.. eg. icons, screenshots etc. Even extraction instructions will probably be unnecessary in most cases. So having screenshots replaced by usage examples does make a lot of sense IMHO.

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