[horde] Suggestions for improvements

Jan Schneider jan at horde.org
Mon Nov 9 20:25:39 UTC 2015

Zitat von Gautier HUSSON <gautier.husson at liberasys.com>:

> Hello Jan, and thank you for your answer.
> Le 05/11/2015 10:29, Jan Schneider a écrit :
>> Hello Gautier,
>> Zitat von Gautier HUSSON <gautier.husson at liberasys.com>:
>>> Hello Jan,
>>> Since March, I go forward in order to propose google and exchange
>>> alternative to my customers.
>>> Horde is still the best choice for me. But I have some ideas to improve
>>> your product.
>>> 1) User interface
>>> Although you improved it, the UI is not at the level of concurrent
>>> solutions. Look at :
>>> http://www.zentyal.com/zentyal-server/
>>> https://www.zimbra.com/products/secure-collaboration-tools-overview
>>> I think you could spend a little money to a webdesigner to improve it.
>>> If I manage to get a good contract with Horde, I will try to sell a
>>> design part and reverse it to the community.
>> To be honest, I don't see how we fall back behind those examples  
>> that you provided. Despite having a darker default theme for Horde,  
>> the UI of all three clients are pretty similar.
> I join a print screen of my horde.
> What I think :
> - color mix is looking bad

This is of course a highly personal matter of taste. Of all color  
themes that we were provided during the last redesign, this is the one  
that had the highest rating among all team members.

> - default of dynamic display ("Nouvel utilisateur" is cropped)

Looks like you still have some old, and too narrow sidebar width  
preference in your user account. The default is wider now and should  
fit the whole button text in.

> - fonts could be more recent (I use sansation, open sans serif and  
> lato for example)

Horde is used across a wide range of devices and operating systems, so  
choosing a set of fonts is a *very* touchy area. We cannot simply pick  
some "recent" font. It needs to be widely available or free to  

> - and indeed, the grey doesn't gives motivation to work :)
> Anyway, this is my opinion. An I know that graphics/pictures and so  
> on are difficult to choose and does never satisfy everyone (and  
> that's why you can theme horde :). But maybe you could ask to a  
> graphic artist / webdisigner that follows the "fashions" of WEB user  
> interface to give an opinion ?

That's what we did during the last redesign. But that was the most  
expensive and one of the most time-consuming projects we ever had, so  
it won't happen again any time soon. But as you said, Horde has theme  
support, so anyone is free to provide a theme that they consider more  
modern, or in any way better than the default.

>>> 2) Colors
>>> Colors are generated randomly (ex : for calendars). This leads to sad
>>> colors. You may improve it.
>>> Example : play with : http://tools.medialab.sciences-po.fr/iwanthue/
>>> Play with values like :
>>> H : 0-360
>>> C : 1.65-3
>>> L : 0.7-1.2
>>> Making a PHP algorithm for generating colors within those parameters
>>> would not be difficult.
>> This is an interesting idea and definitely worth the approach.  
>> Please file a request at bugs.horde.org. I'm not perfectly happy  
>> with the range of colors provided by the settings that you  
>> suggested, but this could of course be fine tuned.
> Ok I will do :-)
>>> 3) Default presets
>>> Default presets for users are difficult to set (or maybe I didn't find
>>> the right way). You could improve it. Example : in administration menu,
>>> create profiles templates that you can set to user groups or any new
>>> user ?
>> I don't think they are really so difficult to set, even though it  
>> requires some basic PHP knowledge. The flipside is, that using PHP  
>> configuration files allows for much more flexibility than UI driven  
>> settings.
>> But of course there is always room for improvement, and providing a  
>> UI for settings those defaults doesn't completely rule out the  
>> usage of PHP configuration files.
> Yes you are fully right. And more and more softwares are using  
> dynamic configuration systems (ex : rspamd with LUA).
> My opinion as firstly a sysadmin is that an admin should be able to  
> change presets (and eventually apply them to a group of users) just  
> with the admin interface.
> But, anyway, customers can buy consulting to you for that type of tuning :)
>>> At last, I spend 3 weeks making a good stand-alone server install. Some
>>> parts are in french but still, it can help.
>>> http://www.liberasys.com/wiki/doku.php?id=infrastructure:infrastructure
>>> (license : http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)
>> Great, you could link to it from the Howto section of our wiki!
> Good idea. I will translate the lasts sentences to English and I  
> will do. Hmmm I will do... can I create an account on your wiki and  
> propose a modification or you have to add the link yourself ?

The wiki is open for anyone to edit.

> At last, Horde is to my knowledge the only free software  
> collaborative mail system that :
> - doesn't require to buy anything (including mail clients plugins),
> - shows all the technical details (functions and problems) about  
> sync protocols / clients,
> - use widespread and good known PHP.
> That's why personally I preafer Horde to Zimbra or OBM or BlueMind  
> for example.


> And how is going the crowd-funding for next active-sync protocol  
> compatibility ?

It tilted.

Jan Schneider
The Horde Project

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