I love the composer in nodeBB. However, it's rare to find anything in life that can not be pushed toward greater perfection and since composer is pushing toward perfection already - let's push a little bit more to make the difference! 🙂
On community.nodebb.org - I noticed a few extra buttons that seemed to related to the same function or kind of, then I noticed even more - why have 3 image related buttons when you can have one?
Ok, first lets strip the overlapping icons and rearrange into more logical groups:
Post Edit Tools | Link Tools | Image Tools | Custom Tool | Zen Mode
Super and look at all the new found space, minimal overload is not far off, time to look at the sequential order.
Less is More in the New Order
If there ever was a more graceful flow from left to right in perfect order I have yet to see it, with less buttons in a more logical, sequential and grouped order we are pitching for less visual cognitive load.
Minimal without losing functionality
Clear left to right flow and back again
Grouping of icons by contextual function
Establishes a logical sequence to icon groups
Creates more space for other icons
Sets logical order and positioning for future icon inclusion
Naturally it flows that the 3 image button functions need to be folded into a pop-up menu.
Why this is probably a better outcome is that it creates a clear focus and display of the image options to the user using one click, all on a single menu.
Currently there are 3 buttons one of which is visually ambiguous as it presents as cloud up arrow icon, which could be construed as being actionable with any file for upload.
If you wanted to push the logic of this approach further, then even the smilies icon could considered a valid target (hypothetically!) to also fold into the single image button - creating a hybrid single image button, a hybrid pop-up menu with all the visual/image elements in one place.
Please note, I am not proposing it for now but I present it to tease out the natural evolution of where this route might go and is perhaps one reduction too far for broader nodeBB deployments.
Please upvote 👍 - If you woudl like to see this in standard nodeBB.
I know I've already said that but I do, so much it inspires me to see it shine shine shine!
First I present some basic edits and additions to the composer, to refine even more the sleek minimalism - sleeker, not weaker.
Spot the Difference
Did you spot the changes?
A) Gone is the left aligned arrow/circle - meet the new (27px x 3px #E2E2E2) - RESIZER NOTCH! 🙂
B) Huh? What is that ... read on
C & D) - Doesn't this just look better, make more sense positionally, rather than words in those clashing with the input and preview areas!
E) - I'm pitching to fully BOX in (top, left, right & bottom) the post editor - Also reducing the beautiful blue line down from 3px to 2px.
Composer - Right beside you!
B) What happens when you click it! 😉
Mans & Womans - I dunno if this exists, I searched, I didn't find it but why not! (now you know why the box in post editor box is needed further + it visually feedbacks better too) It's clearly the natural progression to enhance composer experience and I have NEVER seen this done in any forums I have used, ever! (happy to be corrected).