Firefox 4 needs to be able to notify users of a dialog prompt/change in state for hidden tabs (in non-focused Panorama groups)



Firefox Graveyard
8 years ago
2 years ago


(Reporter: Caspy7, Unassigned)





8 years ago
Removing modal dialogs created the problem of having no means of notifying the user when a tab is asking for attention or for a response.
Bug 588589 (or bug 577096 - I can't tell) will fix this issue by glowing a tab when a dialog is presented or the title text changes (as might happen in a mail or chat session).

However, Panorama presents a new challenge as many tabs are off-screen/invisible.  We have no mechanism to draw the user's attention to (potentially important) state changes in these tabs.

If a user is being prompted for action to avoid being logged out of a secure session or perhaps starts a chat session with a friend, switches to a different group and becomes distracted and forgets about the chat (in absence of a prompt for reply), this could lead to increased user frustration.

We need a means to unobtrusively draw the user's attention to dialog prompts or <title> changes in tabs hidden by panorama.

I will propose a solution in the first comment below.

Comment 1

8 years ago
My thought on it would be to pulse the Panorama icon once and then another half pulse to keep the highlight color.  Once the user opens Panorama, use the same effect on all affected tabs (or minimized groups) in order to draw the user's attention.

Whether or not the user chooses to view any of the tabs, reset the panorama icon state to be non-highlighted.  If the user leaves and returns to panorama, leave 'old' attention-needed tabs their solid highlight color while animating any new notifications.

This way the user's attention is drawn by the animation/color of the panorama icon, but may choose to ignore it and the current task at hand is not disrupted.


8 years ago
blocking2.0: --- → ?
Component: Tabbed Browser → TabCandy
QA Contact: tabbed.browser → tabcandy
Aza - what's the plan here? Feels like we need an answer for this problem, so I'm marking it betaN+, but I feel certain there must already be a bug tracking this work?
blocking2.0: ? → betaN+

Comment 3

8 years ago
I agree that we should add this feature, although I'm not sure if it warrants blocking FX 4. Having used Panorama for months now, there hasn't been a time when I absolutely needed to be warned of a change in another tab. In fact, one of the nice things about Panorama is that when I'm not looking at something outside the current set, I'm never distracted by it.

Adding a glow with a single/double pulse to the Panorama button and a complimentary visual treatment of the updated tabs is the way to go for the solution.

Comment 4

8 years ago
Let me repeat my concern that this situation will lead to users frustrated because they feel they have missed an important notification.

If this is not able to land for 4.0 will it be possible to land in a 4.0.x release?

Comment 5

8 years ago
Marc, reading you loud and clear. We just have a finite amount of time before release and we are looking at a lot of polish. Certainly would love this for a 4.0.x release.

I'm adding a couple other UXers for their opinion on if this should block FX 4.
I don't think this should block 4.0.

We have the same issue with App Tabs, and we decided to do the same thing there — if you are notified, the dialog is tab-modal, and you deal with it when you want to use the tab.
Punting to the future. This may be a great place for an add-on to step in.
Target Milestone: --- → Future


8 years ago
blocking2.0: betaN+ → ---
Priority: -- → P2
Depends on: 587466

Comment 8

6 years ago
Neither this nor bug 587466 have owners.  Is there a UX papercuts list somewhere to get this on? It would be nice if this were on someone's radar.

Now that we're going to be loading tabs from last session by default and deferring loading of tabs on startup (as well as focusing on reducing memory on tabs & across the board), Tab Groups usage could rise making hidden notifications a more visible issue.
Panorama has been removed from Firefox 45, currently in Beta and scheduled for release on March 7th. As such, I'm closing all existing Panorama bugs.

If you are still using Panorama, you will see a deprecation message in Firefox 44, and when 45 is released your tab group data will be migrated to bookmarks, with a folder for each group. There are also a few addons offering similar functionality.

See for more info.

We're removing Panorama because it has extremely low usage (about 0.01% of users), and has a large number of bugs and usability issues. The cost of fixing all those issues is far too high to justify, and so we'll instead be focusing our time and energy on improving other parts of Firefox.
Last Resolved: 2 years ago
Resolution: --- → WONTFIX


2 years ago
Product: Firefox → Firefox Graveyard
You need to log in before you can comment on or make changes to this bug.