Wikipedia:WikiProject Usability/Interface improvement proposals

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Move "edit" links next to the header[edit]

This discussion needs to be summarized in a useful explanation.

Hi. Could you explain what was the "bunching" problem you just fixed with {{Fix bunching}} at Wikipedia:WikiProject Accessibility? I don't see any difference between the two versions.

Except that you just introduced a layout table, which is a bad practice on the web. Web designers and web developers who care about quality have been actively fighting against layout tables for almost a decade now. This layout table also slightly worsen accessibility, although it's not detrimental. So I'd really like to get an explanation. ;-) Kind regards, Dodoïste (talk) 20:28, 31 October 2010 (UTC)

I was fixing the bunched-up edit links. See Wikipedia:How to fix bunched-up edit links. It's a standardized practice on Wikipedia. I an against using layout tables as well, but tables are the easiest way to fix the bunched-up edit links. MC10 (TCGBL) 20:33, 31 October 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for explaining. :-) I couldn't notice the bug because I prevented it. I have a script that changes the location of the edit link, and place it right next to the header. Just like the default behavior at fr.wikipedia and de.wikipedia. Not only does it prevent this bug, it is also more usable and provide a better user experience.
Anyway, this is rather a software issue. The usability team also suggested to move the edit link next to the headers. But Brion Vibber is too scared to break a few scripts, see bugzilla:11555 and bugzilla:11270. So this issue may well linger on forever.
A local script at MediaWiki:common.js would solve the issue, just like for fr: and de:.
I strongly disagree that "tables are the easiest way to fix the bunched-up edit links". How many edits must be made, when one single edit at MediaWiki:common.js would suffice?
For these reasons, and for the fact that this change has an impact on accessibility (albeit a small one) at the accessibility project, I will revert your change. Kind regards, Dodoïste (talk) 23:10, 31 October 2010 (UTC)
I'm perfectly fine with you reverting my change. However, IMO, the location of the edit links for pages is fine as is. I would prefer edit links in the current position than right next to the header. But that's a personal opinion, and I'll respect you to your opinion. Cheers, MC10 (TCGBL) 01:41, 1 November 2010 (UTC)
Well, that's because you're used to it. But for users who are not familiar to Wikipedia, it is noticeably more intuitive. One of the usability rules is to have related things near each other (to be identified as one single group). Things that are significantly separated are far from each other. This usability rule comes from psychological research, one so renown Wikipedia has an article about it: Gestalt psychology#Prägnanz.
Which means that is the edit button is at the opposite place from the header, it is not related to it. That's the first feeling of the user anyway, the user is unconscious of it most of the times. So he has to think a little, and deduce that albeit being separated these two elements are indeed related.
This understanding may happen really quickly for some users. But for others, it will take quite some time. This issue is one small barrier in the walls that prevents users from editing Wikipedia. But it's also by fixing a large number of small issues that you can achieve high usability. Kind regards, Dodoïste (talk) 17:53, 1 November 2010 (UTC)