Question: Activity Grids formatting - what will be their final form?

pdhixenbaugh asked on October 04, 2016 01:40
395 | 2 answers | #13517

Hi all,

I've got a few open questions about the new activity grid system.

First, is the layout still in development? Could there be more obvious space between essential activities, and specialized activities?

Taking a look at the activity grid over at, I see 10 activities listed together, with different statuses, categories, and so on. I discovered you can sort by category as well. But my overall impression is that there are an awful lot of things there to try, and to me it's overwhelming to see them all at once.

Has there been thought on visibly separating activities by something like

"Category 1: Basics" "Category 2: Essential next steps" "Category 3: Optional addons"

and maybe making the list of activities more approachable by only having 2 or 3 in "basics" and so on?

Thanks, and I hope this is the right spot for this! --Patrick


Definitely still in development! I think some icon/color system, and maybe better dividers, to help people sort by how mature activities are, is a great idea. We could also do tabbing if things start to get too complex.

We could also /only/ display starter activities, with a button at the bottom to display "6 draft activities" or "8 more advanced activities" -- stuff like that. We have a framework now and it's not too hard to keep refining. What would you like to see/try first? Divisions by category?

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I think a strength of public lab has always been that advanced work has been visible to new users. I also like how the activity grid organizes all of the work in a topic area in one place. When somebody new to the site logs on, they can see everything that's possible with the spectrometer, or the riffle, Etc., so I don't want to hide that at first glance. I would just concentrate on making the layout more clear with divisions and section headings, and maybe even allowing users to suggest new titles for activities, to help make those more readable.

That's a great idea -- actually do you think you could post a github issue with the suggestion of clearer divisions? I could do a few mockups and I don't think it'd be hard to move forward on.

Alternatively we could convert this page into a Question and solve it here. Thoughts (flexing some of our new feature here :-) )

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Let's try turning it into a question - I'm curious what that would look like. (I thought I was making this a question, but guess I messed up). EDIT: changed it by adding the tag (powertag?) "question:website"

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Hi! a couple updates that may offer some solutions here. First, organizationally, i've been starting to separate out activities into "build it" vs. "use it" -- and sometimes more. For example, the Community Microscope page now has separate listings for building the kit and using it:

Second, you may notice we have more grid types now, especially "thumbnail grids" which display images. This was a long time coming but a new contributor @ValentinaTironi (on GitHub) did a great job and we'll be rolling these out for other grid types too. There are also now note/wiki combined grids, and some other interesting variations you can read about at

You can also now use grids in comments...

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(well, maybe not on questions pages? I'll figure this out.)

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Lol! The in-comment grids were added, but then removed in a subsequent commit. Time to re-add and to add tests to ensure they stay there!


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Testing whether or not I can post an answer without being subscribed to "website." I will delete this answer after one day if it works.

Yes, I can answer it without subscribing to the tag.

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Thanks for the info... I've been looking for the answers myself. Thumbs up.

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