Hello, My name is Erik and I'll be joining Tom on this blog in making posts and participating in discussion. Over the years its been a pleasure watching the amazing work you all do with Revit and I look forward to continued contact with you in person and on-line. On to the post...
Rather than more talk of real world foreclosures and falling home values, this post will start a discussion on screen real-estate. A positive effect of reducing complexity and adopting the new user interface (UI) has been to increase the amount of screen real estate available to the working view. In the 2010 default state there has been a net increase of 6% (based on a 1280 pixel wide screen at 96 DPI). Most of this was achieved through the removal of the Design Bar.
2010 overlaid on the 2009 UI footprint (orange)
The option bar was another pre-existing UI element that received a lot of attention and design iteration. Prototypes were tested exploring possible replacements with the goal of addressing known issues such as discoverability for new users, mitigating horizontal space limitations. Although we retained the option bar in release 2010, it was slimmed a few pixels in height. We will be discussing the option bar more in future posts.
Shift in option bar height
Another enhancement concerned the project browser. We observed many customers running with the browser undocked on a second monitor, despite having to re-set it every session. Revit 2010 now remembers the project browser state and location between sessions.
During design we selected a minimum target resolution of 1280 x 1024 after analyzing customer data which showed this as the most common resolution. Now, I realize that many new monitors are 16:9 rather than 4:3 and many others are using dual monitors. To address this, the ribbon component allows for the ribbon to be docked vertically and/or minimized. We decided not to implement vertical docking in 2010 because of some design issues we felt reduced its effectiveness and needed further investigation. As for minimizing, the two minimization states allow the ribbon to be reduced to 57% and 44% of the fully maximized state. I'll discuss the vertical ribbon and minimizing in more detail in the two next posts.
Concerning dual monitors, I can say that multi-monitor support is one of our most highly requested UI features. We are actively researching this topic and we would like to hear more about your frustrations, experiences and suggestions concerning multiple monitors.