I am working on an interface where there is a list of things (tests) that can be running, drafts or running and pending tests.

In the latter options the same object represents two states (A - the live one) and (B - the draft one).

What is the best way to represent this asynchronous states? (or if you have any idea on how to bypass the issue I am all ears :)

As a background info: The reason why there are this states is that each test needs to be approved before being elegible to run and any change to it needs to be approved too. But users with editing rights might not have approval rights.

  • I don't completely understand, but is this something like a draft and published article in a newspaper's editorial system?
    – Aadaam
    Oct 15 '12 at 10:26
  • Hi Aadaam, in a way yes, works very similarly, but is a sort of A/B testing software. The difference with the editorial system is that anybody can edit, but only few people can publish. So when an "article" is published, it can be edited but the changes won't be published until an admin approves them.
    – Davide
    Oct 15 '12 at 10:43
  • exactly that's how am editorial system works: all journalists can edit but only editors can publish
    – Aadaam
    Oct 15 '12 at 11:40
  • To clarify, are the different states that a test can have 'Running', 'Draft' or 'Running and Pending'?
    – Matt Obee
    Oct 15 '12 at 11:43
  • 1
    Aadam, that's exactly how it works. I wonder what's the best way to represent it. For example, once an article is in published with pending changes, which version does come up when clicking on the article? The published version or the one with changes pending?
    – Davide
    Oct 16 '12 at 8:53

This is a very interesting idea. I've got around a this problem recently. We used icons to represent state. However colour could work equally well if it's internal and you are pressed for space. I've mocked up some examples;

enter image description here

  • 2
    +1 Or, better: both. It's generally a good idea not to rely on colour alone to convey information, as it risks rendering the content inaccessible to users with colour perception or other visual impairments.
    – msanford
    Oct 16 '12 at 14:03

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