2020 Goal #4 Help you do more on your mobile devices

JtringJtring Major grinsCaliforniaRegistered Users Posts: 653 Major grins
edited February 21, 2020 in SmugMug Feature Requests

I just got the February newsletter which pointed me at the article in https://www.smugmug.com/lens about what's ahead for 2020. Goal #4: Help you do more on your mobile devices was really relevant for me since I've just spent a few days cleaning up my site to play more nicely with the app.

Background. Last week I got the sort of feedback that one doesn't like to hear but one does like to know, "Your site isn't very friendly on the app." I had focused on website design, considering both desktop and mobile-sized screens, and really hadn't designed for the app even though in the last year or so I've come to use it occasionally. My website makes heavy use of navigation content blocks with the Items I Choose selection approach and as a result, I let the raw database structure get a bit jumbled. But that raw view, using the order in the Organizer, is what shows in the app. With some work I've tamed the jumble and the app is less unfriendly.

But I hit one limitation. Since the app follows Organizer order, I could not necessarily order items in a folder in the most friendly way. If those items include both lower-level folders and galleries, the Organizer puts the lower-level folders first, followed by the galleries. I can order the folders among themselves, and the galleries among themselves, but not interleave.

For me that's a problem. More background. Many of my folders contain photos from a years's trips and events. For events and short trips, there is one gallery. For longer trips, there is a folder with several galleries. For example, the 2019 year gallery has folders for four trips (with 3 to 10 galleries inside) and individual galleries for another nine trips/events. On the website you can see them all nicely interwoven in chronological order. On the app, the best I can do is March, June, August, September, January, January, April, May, May, May, July, November, December. Not so friendly.

So the request. Arrange for the Organizer to show folders and galleries interleaved, in any order. Probably pages too while you are at it, although that's not an issue for the app. (The app suppresses pages.)

This request is an old one, but what new today is that on the app there is no workaround. On the website one use an f/g/p navigation content block and select entries with the Items I Choose to get any desired order. No such option with the app. In the past I've asked for better behavior on the part of the f/g/p navigation content block, viewing this as a part-way step. All of the sudden, this has become the bigger issue. Please consider this for 2020 Goal 4.

PS #1. My thanks to Tom on the help desk for heroically fast turn-around on duplicating some pages as part of my site redo.

PS #2. That article at https://www.smugmug.com/lens isn't yet up at https://news.smugmug.com/ and I'll admit I find it odd that you have two different but similar blogs, both labeled "Blog" on https://www.smugmug.com/about.

Jim Ringland . . . . . jtringl.smugmug.com


  • leftquarkleftquark Registered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 3,781 Many Grins

    Part of goal #1 was to decouple the reliance on photos and photo website. Rather than everything being about a photo-website, the focus will be on your photos. A photo website is one thing you can do with your photos, amongst many other things, but it doesn't start with a website. It starts with your photos. I'm being intentionally vague as we still flush out what all that means but I believe this will help you and others in the quest you mention above.

    We're working on moving the blog off Medium (news.smugmug.com), but while we migrate to "The Lens" (smugmug.com/lens) we're still cross-posting on both. I meant to get the post up on Medium as well -- let me do that now. Going forward the The Lens will be our "blog".

    dGrin Afficionado
    Former SmugMug Product Team
    aaron AT aaronmphotography DOT com
    Website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com
    My SmugMug CSS Customizations website: http://www.aaronmphotography.com/Customizations
  • JtringJtring Major grins CaliforniaRegistered Users Posts: 653 Major grins

    Well, I'm not sure what that first paragraph means. I'll certainly be interested on how all comes it. As I've written before, my focus is on the story that a sequence of photos tell, not just the photos themselves, not just the story behind each photo taken one-at-a-time. So words and pictures. Words and pictures in sequence. Words and pictures as they relate to words and pictures in other galleries. Your display at to top of https://www.smugmug.com/about with the Moebius Arch and the words "We tell stories" really resonates. Don't lose that. The app's minimalist approach is great for showing pictures but weaker than a more complex website for telling a story. Both have a role to play.

    Jim Ringland . . . . . jtringl.smugmug.com
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