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My user have a daily and weekly date planner view.

In the weekly view the data is displayed in a readonly datagrid.

When double-clicking a datagrid cell the whole cell data is shown in a dialog to edit it.

This application is done with angularJS and must run on desktop and tablet browser. Just a bit background...

Now the actual stuff question.

What pro/contra do you see for each of the versions?

mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

In version 2 I made an Apply button but actually a close button is enough.

  • With an explicate save, how do I decide that I don't want to keep all the changes I just made? – Evil Closet Monkey Feb 6 '15 at 18:09
  • Thats the ONLY drawback I see. A little solution is to use the Undo button you can see in the format bar. – Elisa Feb 6 '15 at 19:37
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Version 1:

PROs

  • Is clear what the user is doing (saving or canceling)

CONS

  • The user could leave midway or something similar and not save.
  • It gives the user more to think about (even if it is not much).
  • It is the old way of doing things.

Version 2:

PROs

  • It asks less of the user (they don't have to save or don't)
  • Assumes that if the user edited, is because she wants to edit (likely).
  • It is the new way of ding things (think Google docs, you don't need to hit save).

CONS

  • Assumes that if the user edited, is because she wants to edit (less likely).
  • No indication that it is saved.

Comparing the two, I would pick the second one, but fix the letting-the-user-know problem, perhaps doing something similar to what google does (see image below), that way letting them know they are making changes even if they don't hit the button, and change the Apply text for Close.

enter image description here

  • CONS No indication that it is saved. When the user saves there will be an ajax spinner somewhere in the dialog. Would it not be EVEN better to rename the Close in Cancel and really revert/rollback everything? Because this is what @Evil Closet Monkey was critizing. – Elisa Feb 6 '15 at 19:41
  • I see the problem, but it is a common practice now, so I don't see much of a problem with that. But if you want ti do that, perhaps you could do something similar to how the draft works in gmail. if you leave a mail midway it just is saved as draft unless you explicitly cancel or send (cancel or apply in your case). Like David Mulder suggests. – rr1g0 Feb 6 '15 at 20:09
  • No, I guess that makes it too complicated. When my user type something in the dateplanner they want to explicitly do with full purpose. And it must be saved right now. It is very unusual that someone writes a lot and realizes that was not his intention. Maybe he took the wrong day but that happens prolly once a lifetime ;-) – Elisa Feb 6 '15 at 20:40
  • I agree. That makes my answer correct, doesn't it? :D – rr1g0 Feb 6 '15 at 20:44
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    About the cancel button: When the user sees in the dialog after typing that data was immediatelly saved. Does the user then really assume that the cancel button is closing and reverting the data? If not then I could also name the button close... – Elisa Feb 7 '15 at 10:39
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I just wish to point out that there is a third option that in many cases (though not necessarily in this one) is better:

Save the state of the form, but do not 'apply' it. So if for example the user comes back after accidentally closing the dial/having a computer crash/whatever he will be either presented with the form as he left it (option 3) or the option to restore the form to that state (option 4).

Now that we have determined which four options exists I would personally advise in this case to go for option 2 if changing the text has no consequences whatsoever for any third party except the user himself. On the other hand, if changing the text is for example visible for other team members as well then I would go for option 4. This both empowers the user (as he can discard his changes if he wishes to) and prevents odd situations where incomplete data is seen by others. Option 3 is mostly only advisable if one single set of inputs only make sense for that specific form (e.g. the answer form on SE where you always answer one specific question), but which is not the case now.

  • The text the user enters is just personal preparation meeting text. – Elisa Feb 7 '15 at 10:40

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