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Ahoy! me herties! I am developing a small Desktop Application. So, I need some advice;

I want to decrease white space when it comes to presenting a relatively small amount of data. I know that when it's empty, a little message is shown stating it's empty rather then a blank window.

But when the user starts to add their first data, it seems ugly to me, the whitespace is so consequently

All I could do was add dashed squares, but I do not know if there are better of at least it's a good practice to do so, is it ?

Presenting small amount of datas with dashed squares Presenting small amount of datas without dashed squares

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  • Is there a problem with it other than that it's ugly? Otherwise you should ask this on graphicdesign.stackexchange.com.
    – jazZRo
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:23
  • I think so, there are only two items on an a big window, I don't know if there are a best approach to display a small data on a large window without the feeling that the window is empty. I didn't notice there a Graphicdesign part on stackexchange :p, I will repost it on GraphicDesign. Should I remove it from here ?
    – M.Nemo
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:36
  • The dashed boxes are essentially "affordance slots" to suggest you can add more things, and at some point you will either run out of "slots" or will need to scroll to see more slots. Is this the intention?
    – SteveD
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:38
  • @SteveD - Look at Firefox, it has a similar design for a new tab page, but there you won't run out of slots. The OP could use a scrollbar, too.
    – linusg
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:39
  • I'm not sure if it has to close, there is a clear connection with UX although that may not have been the intention of the question. Let's see what others have to say.
    – jazZRo
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:42
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I would definitively go with the first picture.

It clearly indicates that the space being left can be used to add more items here, while on the second picture, the user can only guess what the empty space will be used for.

Another way I can think of, is scaling down the items as the user adds more, but that's just an idea...

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  • mmm... good idea, I will test it and see. So it's the first one, I accept your answer.
    – M.Nemo
    Jan 24 '17 at 12:53

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