After lingering in limbo for some time, I am pleased to be able to provide some screenshots of my upcoming DotNetNuke Module Container project. This project is expected to be released into beta sometime in mid-November, though I may circulate to a few interested parties before any public release.
The project is designed to address a common usability concern with the default DotNetNuke control panel, which is perhaps best illustrated pictorially:
As users of the framework have surely noted, the list of modules available to an administrator is lengthy and highly-confounding. While experience mitigates this difficulty, it remains a significant challenge for new administrators to understand which module to select from this imposing list.
This project attempts to group this set of modules into manageable containers where each module is grouped by function (e.g. administrative modules, e-commerce modules). By way of example, a clean DotNetNuke 5.1.4 install with ALL core modules installed (and grouped into logical containers) would be reduced to a very understandable list:
After a container is selected and instantiated, a user is prompted to select from one of the modules contained therein:
The selection process utilizes jQuery, minimizes the number of post-backs, and (in my opinion) greatly increases overall usability.
This module is expected to be released sometime in mid-to-late November for public consumption. A limited beta may be made available prior to this date, subject to interest.
Your feedback is appreciated. Does the lengthy DotNetNuke module list bother you? Would you (or your administrators) find a solution of the type outlined above useful? Please leave a comment and share your thoughts.
Some additional screenshots: