Why is the editor worse than before?

Recent developments in the editor that I am experiencing that are terrible changes.

  1. If I do not elect a data type and instead add the data source first, Bubble no longer smartly suggests the correct data type to use. I told Bubble in an interview about UX/UI changes they were making in the editor that this feature should not go away and it had always been helpful, even for new users.

@josh Could you we get the platform to not move backwards in functionality and instead attempt to get long standing issues resolved, keep working functionality untouched and then get to the much needed tasks of WU optimization features before jumping into things like tables (I can already make a very good table, I don’t need a pre-configured table)

  1. When I group elements together, by clicking onto the group and holding select or shift while clicking other elements to group together, I no longer see a blue outline around each selected element and only see the most recently selected element. Terrible UX change. Now, I am always confused of whether or not I selected things correctly. Additionally, once I have selected to group the elements together, I get met with a ‘apply changes’ dialogue box, instead of automatically having the changes applied. I had intentionally selected to group the elements and intentionally selected the type of group to group them into, I DO NOT need an additional step to check if I am sure I want to apply the changes.

  2. After grouping elements together, no longer is the group that was just created by the grouping automatically selected or highlighted in the elements tree, so I am forced to have to search the elements tree to find it, so I can then rename it and of course undo all the ridiculous default settings. Makes my job as a developer much more tedious and time consuming.

  3. No longer can I select an element type and then just simply click onto the canvas (even off the page or reusable - ie: into the grey border area) for the element to be drawn out. Now, I have to actually take the time to click onto the page or reusable (ie: in the white space or whatever color your background of the page or reusable element is) and move my mouse to draw it out…this is terrible because more often than not there are already other elements open on the canvas that the element gets drawn into and then you have to search the elements tree to see where it was placed. In the past, it was simple, select the element type, click onto the canvas, see the element added to the page or reusable on the elements tree then select it and move it to where you need it.

  4. What is up with the dynamic expression editor, especially with use of option sets? I have to see 3 different ‘more’ option choices amongst a bunch of brackets, and why on earth are two of the three choices for ‘more’ the same types of operators?

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The new UX designers hired should be focused on improving things, not making them more difficult…who thought it was easier to work with dynamic expressions like this?

  1. Issue checker is broken more than it was in the past. Now, if you delete a style, you do not immediately see any issues in the issue checker for areas where the style had been used…NOW, you HAVE TO navigate to each page/reusable element to let the issue checker scan that particular page/reusable element to highlight all the issues found only on that page/reusable…a horrible move backwards. This issue has been around for a while, but has gotten out of hand and NEEDS to be addressed and FIXED by bubble. I’ve personally been reporting it for over 3 years now.

  2. No longer can I tab between margin or padding values on elements. Previously I could click into the top margin or padding input on the formatting options, enter the value, then press tab and automatically tab through the other values (bottom, left, right)…NO LONGER, now I have to click into top, add value and then click into bottom and add value.

  3. Why am I seeing all the formatting options on the element dialogue box when I have a style already selected?

It is confusing and makes me believe I did not actually select a style, so I am forced into double checking constantly if I have selected the style or not…I understand there was a ‘new feature’ of detach style (new feature in quotes because it already existed, it just has a new name; previously it was remove style which did the SAME THING as detach style…the style was no longer applied but all the formatting of the style remained on the element)…I should only see the formatting options when I select to detach style, NOT when I have a style selected. @nickc

There are other things, but this is what I remember from my first full day back at work in a week.

Some suggestions for improvements that should have been implemented already…

For default settings of elements, make it so the style property colors selected are the default colors

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If there is a built in, non deletable/editable color for text, groups, pages these colors should be the default color of those element types when a new element is created…I believe another user recently made the suggestion and it makes total sense…if I have a text color in the styles, every text element I create should automatically have the default color set to that color, not the random Bubble default colors.

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  1. It’s happening also when you delete a plugin, or reinitialize an api call and change the returning data. Any error generated in other pages will not be detected unless you move to the page.
    When you have undetected errors you can publish the broken app without any check by bubble. It was a great feature but it’s not reliable anymore :man_shrugging:

  2. extremely annoying. It was very quick to tab between margin and padding. Now you need to click every value. Super slow.
    Edit: this issue may be resolved

  3. it’s because you can override the styles and it is actually a big improvement. It saves a lot of time when you want to use a style but change a single option on a specific element. :slight_smile:

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Thanks for this @boston85719
A lot of us (if not all!) are facing these issues.

Does it do anything different than detach style in terms of performance.

It is known that if you have a repeating group with 100 entries and you have a single text element inside of that repeating group to display the values, and the text element does not have a style applied, the formatting needs to be loaded once for each entry, so 100 times, however, if you have a style applied, the formatting is only needed to be loaded once, which is a performance improvement, which meant using styles was a way to optimize for performance, however slightly it might have been improved.

Now, with this ability to override a style, is there a benefit still with performance…so if I have a style applied into the repeating group, and then use the style override to change the font color, will that entire formatting now need to be loaded once for every entry, the same way as if no style was applied at all?

If the style override means, all formatting is loaded once, then each style override formatting property is only loaded once as well, then YES, this is an improvement, however, if it means all formatting is needed to be loaded once for each item in the repeating group because of the style override, then it is not an improvement and will lead to poorer performance as users will be less likely to create a new style and instead just rely on the override for the formatting differences.

Regardless of whether or not it is going to lead to poorer performance or not, the formatting values should not be shown by default and there should be a simple button that is clicked ‘override styles’ to then see the formatting options, so that the UX is actually good and a user who has used the override style feature will actually quickly asses that they have done so by seeing the formatting options and the style applied, and on the flip side, users that don’t use the override feature will still be able to easily asses that they have applied a style.

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This is a good question for the bubble team.
For my personal experience having the ability to use a text style with a different alignement just in a single element without creating a new style saves time, expecially when iterating over a new UI.

Style overrides applies also to padding, in the layout tab. If you add a switch to enable override you start having 2 buttons, and you need to click them every time you switch tab.

You can already assess if a style is applied by looking to the “style attribute” property, and if an override is applied to that style it will show it in the same property. You look at the style attribute and you know what style is applied and if you have overrides only in one single look, it seems reasonable to me.

Of course my personal experience is different from yours and of course we perceive this specific feature in a different way :man_shrugging:

That is one of the hard parts about good UX design…knowing what is helpful and what is not.

For me, definitely it is to confusing to see the format options because it is such a larger space and more information that the way I perceive things, I immediately assume that since I still see all those choices, the style must not have been appplied.

If it has the same performance as a style that is not overridden, than it also helps to greatly reduce the number of styles needed for an app…I think I need to email support to hear what engineering explains as the performance implications of style overrides.

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1-4 you are correct, these are all due to Bubble pushing out an experimental design canvas feature before it was ready. All the bugs were so tiny that people didn’t bother to take the 10 minutes each required to file a bug report. Bubble took that as meaning it was bug free, when what it really means is that their bug reporting process is too cumbersome.

5 - this is a feature, not a bug–each one of those more are within different sets of parenthesis, so you can have much more complex logic.

6 - agreed
7 - another bug from the design canvas release.
8 - this is a feature, and is more performant than detaching styles

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My 2 cents, I like 8. I enjoy being able to immediately override a style vs. having to click “Detach”, then making the change. I know I’m coddled. There’s just so many damn clicks to do everything that even saving me 1 click adds up fast for all the work I do in Bubble.

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Looking into the bugs you reported, thanks for flagging. Regarding some of the other suggestions…

#8 - we now show appearance settings even when a style is attached so these settings can be overridden (new feature). We simply renamed “remove style” to “detach style” (not new feature)

Style Variables - I’m not seeing the behavior you are describing, do you mind filing a bug ticket or sharing a screen recording?

In terms of during the development phase or performance of the app?

I do like it as well…however, I get confused and I’m constantly checking if the field shows none(custom) indicating no style selected, shows the style name in normal font, or shows style in italics (overridden options)…I’d personally like the ability to hide/show the formatting options (yes through an extra click :wink:) if the style has already been set. This way I personally wouldn’t get confused, but I do feel outnumbered here, so likely just going to be one of those things in life I am just not going to get

Are the styles supposed to be used when creating a new element (ie: text color should be the default color of a newly created text element)? I just didn’t want to make a bug report to just be told it was expected behavior that the style options are not used.

Also, would you be able to confirm here if there is a performance difference related to styles that have a formatting option overridden? Really interested to know from engineering the impacts of overriding a style would have.

Agreed.
The new feature is handy, but the section should be collapsed. When you need to override something, you need to uncollapse to apply that change. Otherwise, it looks overwhelming.

@nickc
And, to be honest, I feel like the editor is a playground for your teams. It looks like you test out the changes with closed eyes. Instead of getting rid of the existing bugs, you prioritize sprints that push new stuff (in a way that provides more bugs)
The editor is not consistent. The idea of no-code / low-code tools is to speed up the development process.
With a new update, now when you switch between different elements and their expressions, you need to refresh the page for being able to continue working on stuff. So, during one hour I had to reload the editor up to 30 times.
That’s just an example of the bugs that you create.

I won’t send a bug report since this is something primitive that you need to handle.

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That sounds like a pretty serious issue that would warrant a bug report. I have not been able to reproduce the need to reload the editor on my end - so additional context on what is going on in your situation will help us track down the root cause.

Yes, default styles will be used on an element whenever a new element is created.

Will get back to you on any performance implications of an overridden style.

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There should be no changes in performance between an element with a style and an element with an overridden style

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Hey @nickc seriously you guys need to resolve the issue with the expression-builder window

It constantly closes when I’m trying to edit something, at the beginning though it was me, but 3 different browsers and the issue persists. It’s very, very frustrating to open the expression-builder 5 times in a row to just change something.

Something has changed in the last 1 or 2 weeks, I can’t remember when this started, but it has been there for some days…

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Yes, I have noticed this too. Try to add a part to an expression and it collapse the dialogue box. Sometimes it takes 3 tries to get it to stay open.

I’m not referring to default styles…when I don’t have a default style for an element, I would think that it would use the style variables.

as it says at the top of it to set your default colors…am I expecting something that has not been implemented or would this be a bug if when I do not for example have a default style for text elements and create a new text element that it does not take the Text Style Variable color as the color of the text element and instead it is a Bubble default color.

@boston85719 I am still seeing the helper modal pop up to suggest the Content Type on my end. Are you still not getting this when you set a data source without setting a content type first?