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Maggie Tsai

New highlight colors - 166 views

highlight toolbar performance colour shade depth suggestion FAQ

started by Maggie Tsai on 21 Apr 07
  • Maggie Tsai
     
    Along with new sticky note UI, we have also changed the following colors to our annotation notations:

    New: Group annotation: now has its own color: pink #ffc4d8 / #990033

    ------

    Changes:

    Private highlight (yellow) - #ffff99
    Private annotation (blue) - #abd5ff
    Public annotation (green) - #b2e57e

    -----

    The new color schemes are lighter than previous version. Like to have your feedback on whether you like the new changes or not, and if not, specifically what shades of color are good.
  • Rick Z
     
    The new yellow is too light. After a while, it just blends in with the white and is hard on the eyes. A darker shade would be nice.

    P.S. THIS IS THE MOST AMAZING RESEARCH TOOL EVER! I just love the highlight tool. I used to have dreams of creating an interface that would allow me manually highlight webpages, and you've done it. Keep it up.
  • Maggie Tsai
     
    Agree - next toolbar highlight color will be darker.

    Glad to hear that. Please update your avatar.

    Welcome to the Diigo community and look forward to your active participation!
  • davido T
     
    I liked the brighter colors. They look like what they are: highlighting!

    maggie_diigo wrote:
    > Agree - next toolbar highlight color will be darker.
    >
    > Glad to hear that. Please update your avatar.
    >
    > Welcome to the Diigo community and look forward to your active participation!
  • Spiral Funk
     
    Hi,

    Could somebody, e.g. Maggie, provide me a HTML example of how the code for Public Annotation (the green ones) looks like when a page gets rendered... I can't find a green annotation right now anywhere.

    I need to know the whole HTML code for the layer-tag so i can identify them in my Stylish script, and that way be able to change the colors however i want... (Stylish is a Firefox extension...)

    You can't insert html-code here, so if you just shoot me an URL that contains a green annotation. I have only been able to find the purple ones, i.e. group annotations...

    ps. I tried creating a public annotation myself, but i can't because i have no friends (2 required). (And Diigo didn't let me make them even after i had invited and registered two of my imaginary friends.. smart Diigo...)

    pps. Sure i will release the Stylish script, if it starts working. Nothing fancy though.
  • Maggie Tsai
     
    Here is an example of public annotations displayed: http://www.diigo.com/tools/diigolet

    When our new "Add Friends" feature is introduced, it will be easier to our members to interact with one another.

    Interested in seeing your stylish script :-)
  • Spiral Funk
     
    Thanks Maggie....

    I think i got the Stylish script working now.
    You can change the colors of highlights and annotations with it. (I'm only changing the background-color so it won't work with the underlining option in Diigo...)
    You can specify a color for a specific user's highlights.
    You can also specify the colors of the search-term-highlighting.

    Somebody please try out the Stylish script, you can find it here:

    http://userstyles.org/style/show/2324

    Let me know if there're are any problems...

    I don't know how useful it is, but we'll see... I'll remove it if it's too buggy :)
  • Adam Golding
     
    Maggie,

    I think this colour-coded scheme is really misguided, as it is not based in any way on either:

    1. the way people use multiple colours of highlighter on paper
    2. any of our intuitions about what various colours 'mean'.

    On paper and in Acrobat Professional, for many years i have used a system something like:

    Yellow - generic highlight--something 'important'
    Green - I Agree!
    Red - I Disagree!
    Orange - I find this dubious... (orange is 'close' to red qualitatively)
    Ice Blue - I don't understand this, or I'll read it later (you're putting the passage 'on ice' for now)

    this is the core of the system, and is what i advocate to others. I sometimes also use:
    Pale Green - i'm *inclined* to agree
    Pale Red - i'm *inclined* to disagree
    Purple - this is really unusual/cool/exceptional
    Black (with the inner text turned grey), or Grey - to visually mark 'structural' phrases such as "Firstly," or "My second point is as follows:"

    I *don't* think that diigo shoudl force users to use one colour system, but shoudl allow them to control colours separately from the 'tag' applied to the annotation (i.e. agreement or disagreement)--i.e. certain highlight would enter diigo's system with the tag 'agreement' or 'disagreement' highlights, and the local user could control what colour highlights with the tag 'disgareement' highlights are displayed as, and if they change this setting, all of their previous disagreement highlights would change colour. This woudl be EXTREMELY useful as it would allow users to evolve their highlight system over time, as they discover what colour patterns aid the perceptual process of working with a document. (Note that tags shoudl be free-form as well, imo, a la many features of google, or how last.fm, the social music site, works.)

    However, although no system of colorus should be imposed, one such as the one outlined above shoudl be configured by default for new users, as it is really the best way to use colour in the user experience.

    PLEASE don't start using up colours for other purposes (such as pink for group annotation) while i am waiting patiently for you to implement multicolour highlight at the user's discretion for the sort of purposes i've just outlined here--half the point of highlight is to manipulate the salience of the page, so that later you can glance at the page and the pattern of colours in the highlight conveys aspects of the document to you the way a painting does, rather than having to read through every highlight and figure out why you highlighted it, etc.

    Not to mention that, using colour both to indicate whether there is an annotation, and whether it's public or group or private is overloading colour too much, imo. Colour should be used for one purpose, and that is to demonstrate at a glance why the user highlighted it--this is how students have highlighted textbooks for years, because obviously there is no analogue to "group" or "public" highlighting on a paper text. Therefore, it's ill-advised to now attempt to use colour for and aspect of highlighting which didn't exist in the paper experience--indicate new aspects, such as public/group highlighting, with something *new*. I would suggest a small icon in the corner of the highlight, or pehraps just a pop-up when you mouse over the highlight, although come to think of it, if you really want to use colours for this purpose, you could make it fully customizble, so that a user could have public disagreement highlights as 'green' or whatever they want, and private agreement highlights as 'olive' or whatever.
  • Cathy Evanoff
     
    I am with you on this one. I really need the option of highlighting in different colors. Are there plans to add this feature?

    CathyE
  • Maggie Tsai
     
    Adam,

    Thanks for taking the time to provide us with lots of good feedback.

    As a user, I can appreciate your points about customized colors. However, default color schemes not only make it easy for us to implement (I'd imagine there might be some performance issues if we allow users to dynamically customize the display - performance is something critical that we are unwilling to compromise), it also applies some consistency throughout the site when one is viewing the public annotations. Without a default color scheme, it will also make explaining to the new users how our system works even a lot more complex. For the sake of personalization for some users, wonder if this may cause a lot more confusion to majority of users... Lots of considerations needed here.

    But still, thanks for bringing this up. We will discuss more in our team to see if there might be a better way of doing this.

    Meanwhile, the new toolbar is up, and the highlight are shown in brighter sets of colors.
  • Adam Golding
     
    maggie_diigo wrote:
    > Adam,
    >
    > Thanks for taking the time to provide us with lots of good feedback.
    >
    > As a user, I can appreciate your points about customized colors. However, default color schemes not only make it easy for us to implement (I'd imagine there might be some performance issues if we allow users to dynamically customize the display - performance is something critical that we are unwilling to compromise), it also applies some consistency throughout the site when one is viewing the public annotations. Without a default color scheme, it will also make explaining to the new users how our system works even a lot more complex. For the sake of personalization for some users, wonder if this may cause a lot more confusion to majority of users... Lots of considerations needed here.

    hi maggie, i think you misunderstand my suggestion. I suggested that:

    1. highlights be of different types, including a 'normal' hihglight, and things like agreement or disagreement

    2. there be a default colour for each highlight type

    3. users be able to change the local mapping between colours and highlight types


    So, when a user viewed public highlights, the default would be, for instance, that all public generic highlights are yellow, all public agreement highlights are green, etc. So even if user A highlighted a passage as 'agreement' and they had their agreement colour set to 'brown', if user B came a long and viewed user A's public highlight, the colour they woudl be see woudl be whatever they have set locally to be the colour for 'agreement' highlights, which would have a reasonable default which most users wouldn't touch. The display of public highlight would be very consitent this way, and in explaing it to new users, the distinction between the tag and the corresponding colour need not even be mentioned--just give them the defaults and perhaps mention briefly that they can change the default colour. I should say this clearly: it's not defaults that are the problem--defaults are *very good*--it's having *unalterable* defaults here. And i say this not just in worship of customizability for customizability's sake--this is a very real part of how people interact with paper documents, and the whole point of electronic annotation ought to be to offer *more* functionality than you have on paper, in every way possible, so that it's less of an uncomfortable trade-off.

    You could simplify all this for the user int he following way:

    1. by default, only one highlighting type is enabled, and by default it displays as yellow
    2. factors such as whether the highlight is public or private, and whether there is a pop-up are NOT indicated by colour, but by other graphical elements, as in Acrobat Professional, for instance
    3. users could turn on the 'meaningful colours' option or some such, which would add a few other highlighters to the toolbar, clearly indicated as 'agreement', 'disagreement', etc. and displayed int heir default colours
    4. buried much deeper, in 'advanced options' could be the ability to change what colours the highlights display as. this option is less important if a good colour scheme is chosen in advance, but a bad colour scheme could easily displease exactly the sort of annotation-happy user to which this product ought to appeal

    The basic idea is that tagging should be more fundamental than the colour of the highlight--at base, users are selecting a passage and identifying it as generically 'important', or 'dubious', or what have you. Then a local setting in the diigo toolbar controls which colours each tag is displayed in, and this would be set to a reasonable default, and most users would never need to touch it. moreover, new users would only be presented with a single highlighter which just tags things as generically 'important' (although of course other tags could be added using the existing interface). This would appeal to the casual users of diigo, as well as the intense annotators who would be the product's greatest proselytes.


    as for performance, enlighter and gibeo both offer multicolour highlighting without being slow even on my archaic machine. enlighter's big downfall, other than it appears to be somewhat abandoned now, was that it didnt' allow the reassignment of the colours you have for each tagging category, and so the user documentation urged the user to think carefully about how the set up their colour scheme before they began highlight doccuments--not a good system, as no one wants to have to commit themselves to a system upfront like that--it's time consuming, and guaranteed to disappoint down the road whent he user gradually gets used to the annotation experience adn realizes they'd like to do it a slightly better way. having customizability here allows diigo to evolve to meet various user's needs without additional development.

    the 'reassigning' of colours also wouldn't be any more performance intensive than having fixed multiple colours, if the colour reassignment required a reboot of the browser anyway.


    >
    > But still, thanks for bringing this up. We will discuss more in our team to see if there might be a better way of doing this.
    >
    > Meanwhile, the new toolbar is up, and the highlight are shown in brighter sets of colors.
  • iplnts
     
    Hi everobody on this thread!

    I put a suggestion not concretely regarding to this theme, but referring to this too. ( owing to i didn't want to topen a new topic for that)

    Look at that who are interesting... one can find the reference to this theme at the bottom of the post ( the link below)
    How to close a solved post?
    http://groups.diigo.com/Diigo_HQ/forum/topic/414

    Thanks, for considering,
  • Maggie Tsai
     
    adamgolding,

    Thanks for the additional clarification. Some very interesting points you made here. This will involve major changes in our backend - will discuss with our team.
  • gdwarner
     
    I also need multiple colors for research. I hope the feature is implemented in the future.


    cevanoff wrote:
    > I am with you on this one. I really need the option of highlighting in different colors. Are there plans to add this feature?
    >
    > CathyE
  • Ji Chang
     
    I am also awaiting the To-Be-Added "multiple colors" feature

    gdwarner wrote:
    > I also need multiple colors for research. I hope the feature is implemented in the future.

    cevanoff wrote:
    > I am with you on this one. I really need the option of highlighting in different colors. Are there plans to add this feature?
  • Graham Perrin
  • Graham Perrin
     
    As I understand it:

    Yellow highlight

    * simple public highlight
    * not normally drawn over other people's views of a page
      - to let other people see your highlights in context, use an annotated link.

    Blue highlight

    * blue signifies that a note above the highlight is private
      - and you can not mix private and public notes on a single highlight.

    Green highlight

    * green signifies that a note above the highlight is public
    * green highlights are drawn over other people's views of a page
    * some people prefer to not see social annotations
    - Diigolet offers a simple switch: hide/show
    - installed versions of Diigo have more complex approaches to hiding.

    Pink highlight

    * pink signifies that the highlight is visible to a group.

    Green versus pink

    Pink wins! If a highlight is both:

    a) beneath a public note
    and
    b) visible to a group

    - then the highlight will be pink, not green.

    Blue versus pink

    Pink wins!
  • yc c
     
    I think it's strong enough. This depends on the quality of the monitors.
    Too strong highlights also can be disturbing.
    Maybe the intensity of the colors could be chosen as options?

    Rick Z wrote:
    > The new yellow is too light. After a while, it just blends in with the white and is hard on the eyes. A darker shade would be nice.
  • Graham Perrin
     
    Subject: strength/intensity/depth/shade of colour of highlight

    > Maybe the intensity of the colors could be chosen as options?

    +1 to that suggestion.

    > Too strong highlights also can be disturbing.

    My own personal preferences:

    * the current shade of yellow is always good

    * the pink is occasionally too heavy

    * I rarely think about the shade of green, which means it's OK

    * I very rarely stick private notes but if I did, I might occasionally find the blue too dark.

    If I used Firefox, instead of Safari + Diigolet, I might have a different set of opinions…

    Undesirable borders to highlights

    In a February/March topic Option to disable the dashes around highlighted text it was noted that users of Diigo 3.1.6.13 for Firefox find a peculiar dotted border in some situations.

    Dotted borders around highlights would certainly alter my perception of whether a colour is suitable.
  • Graham Perrin
     
    I wondered whether anything might be done with user-defined style sheets but glancing at the second screen shot below, I suspect not.



  • The Ravine / Joseph Dunphy
     



    Out of curiosity:

    Does anybody know of any pages with black backgrounds that had something highlighted on them? I'm wondering how that looked.

    Not everybody uses a light background when laying out a page. Some of us find all of that glare unpleasant to look at, after a while.



  • Graham Perrin
     
    > black backgrounds

    … appear excellent with (at least) yellow and green Diigo highlights:
    http://www.diigo.com/075bn
  • Graham Perrin
     
    Meanings of colours have changed. It feels like a bit of a free-for-all at the moment — an area that's yellow in one situation may be green or pink in other situations, and so on. I won't attempt to summarise until after some of the questions elsewhere are explained, but I think the gist of it is:

    * since Diigo 4.0 beta allows a choice of colours when highlighting

    * you can no longer assume that the colour pink signifies a public or private group.

    OK so you can gain some hint (but not absolute certainty) of the visibility of a note by looking for a small icon in the speech bubble to the left of the highlight. I sometimes see a padlock or heads and shoulders but I don't know how the whole caboodle fits together, so probably best to drop the contextual menu and read the status line at the foot of the menu to be sure of the meanings of things. Expect the help area to be updated in due course :-)
  • sahil48 AAA
     
    Just to give a idea about how I use multiple colors:

    *yellow for simple highlighing
    *orange (which I would like rather than pink) for key information
    *green for definitions
    *blue for any procedures or instructions

    This means that I use all four colors for private or public notes. Perhaps the text public or an always visible icon appended to public bookmarks would make for sense rather than a highlighting color.

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