[Libreoffice] EasyHack: Improved bug filing form / flow

Samuel Atkins sam at samatkins.co.uk
Mon Apr 4 14:57:06 PDT 2011

Hi Ivan,

Glad you found some time to have a think about this. :-)

On 04/04/2011 11:14 AM, Ivan M. wrote:
> I would envision taking the existing steps (with a few tweaks here and
> there) and turning them into a step-by-step wizard-like experience
> with each step sliding in and out from right to left as it is
> completed. So, for 'LibreOffice crashes', there would be a separate
> screen for 'when does LibreOffice crash,' 'Operating System,' etc -
> maybe with a progress bar to show the user's progress through the
> process. I think this kind of simplicity and feedback would be a
> user-friendly way of making this 'technical' process accessible (this
> would also mean providing help and hints - e.g. how to take a
> screenshot). I do have one question though: would the submitted form
> actually submit a bug report in Bugzilla, or would it get sent to
> someone for moderation/confirmation?
Cool idea! I've quickly had a go at a mockup myself (I happen to have 
just written a scrolly thing, so it was pretty simple. :-) ) which is 
located here: http://atkinslg.dyndns.org:4080/stuff/wizardmockup.html
There are some stub slides in there showing how it could work well even 
when branching (different sets of questions based on problem type, etc). 
It already feels very nice, and much simpler. :-)

I think the plan was to have it submit directly to bugzilla, but it may 
well be beneficial to have some sort of moderation.
> The first step would be to search for similar bugs. IIRC this is (or
> was) a mandatory step when submitting a Ubuntu bug on Launchpad, and
> it might help us to do the same. I realize that this is a careful
> balancing act - making it easy and simple for the end user in order to
> increase participation, but also not flooding the QA team with poor
> quality time wasting reports. So, step 1 for me would be that -
> perhaps in an iframe so that we can offer a link the user can click if
> they can't find their bug (so that they can proceed)
Not sure about how to make it mandatory (probably possible to an extent 
though). I haven't put the iframe in yet, but that's more because I was 
busy playing with the other stuff. :-)
> A good number of these steps involve users submitting data, and I
> think there should be more disclaimers around that (e.g. please be
> sure to remove any private or personally identifiable information). We
> should also inform the person about what's going to happen to their
> material - will it be available online for others to examine? If so,
> there may be potential copyright issues.
Should be fine to include it every time data has to be submitted now, as 
it'll still only be one per slide, so not that cluttered.
> Concerning 'LibreOffice is hard to use', it may be difficult to
> differentiate between a bug report and a feature request - is it a
> feature or a bug? We could simply forward these reports (since they
> could contain very valuable data) to people who are involved with UX
> (i.e., Christoph's mailbox :P) where that decision can be made more
> easily. Potential differentiators could include 'LibreOffice doesn't
> do what I expect,' 'I find it difficult to use a particular feature,'
> and one or two others.
Forwarding should be simple enough, yeah. Though if stuff is moderated, 
maybe it wouldn't need to distinguish between bugs and feature requests?
> With website feedback, the range of possible problems could involve
> display issues, broken links, trouble downloading, typos (if we want
> to be pedantic - maybe 'wording' might be a better term since it could
> cover cultural/language issues, or instances where something is not
> clear) and perhaps (if applicable) user account issues with LibO
> websites (for now I can only think of the wiki - sure, we have
> Silverstripe logins, but only for people who have a reasonable idea of
> what they're doing).
Sure. I think with this and the 'hard to use' category, it'll be a while 
until stuff has to be properly nailed-down, so there's no rush. I'll 
probably have to chat with some QA people at some point, see what kind 
of bugs generally come-up.
> I hope this 'brain dump' helps a little - I think this is something
> that will steer LibO and its user in the right direction (especially
> if we include a link to this from within LibO).
> Regards,
> Ivan.
Sure! Very helpful. :D And it's always good to have a fresh view on 
things. But yeah, I'm very pleased with the wizard idea. :-)

Thanks again,

~ Sam

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