UI improvements to Codebase

For the last couple of months, we've been working away on a bunch of new UI improvments to Codebase.


Why the changes?

Back in January, we wrote out a list of the things we wanted to ship during the first few months of the year. The list was long and contained many great improvements but as soon as we started to look at getting them implemented, we ran head long into a problem with our legacy CSS. Our CSS was terrible. It was 550KB when minified and was a rabbits nest of nested and un-nested selectors. In light of this, and because most of our new features were UI-based, before we could get started on the list of great things, we had to completely re-write all our CSS from scratch!

What's changed?

The biggest change is the new consistency you'll experience when using the web application but we've also taken the opportunity to make some other improvements:

  • You can now choose between a fixed width or a fluid layout. We prefer the fixed width and this is the default for all new users. Existing users will stick with the fluid design. You can change this from your My Profile page.

  • You can also choose between a simple & advanced text areas. Before today, all text areas included a simple markdown editor toolbar which 90% of our users never used therefore we've hidden it by default for all new users. You can hide it for your existing account from your My Profile page.

  • The new ticket page has been redesigned and provides a much more streamlined method of adding new tickets. Check it out.

  • We've re-written from the scratch our project selector (press p) which has removed a number of little bugs and and issues.

  • We've introduced a number of changes to our header.

If you spot anything which doesn't look quite right, please let us know.

What's next?

We've still got a few UI tweaks to make which we will be doing over the next few weeks. But we're also going to be working on the features from the list we made at the start of the year:

  • Side-by-side diffs
  • Syntax highlighting within diffs
  • Improvements to our code review interfaces
  • Ability to restrict which IP addresses can access your Codebase account.
  • Improved outbound e-mails & notifications
  • Digest e-mails which give you an overview of your account activity for the last day, week or month.
  • Permissions on a per-repository basis
  • Improvements to webhooks

If you've got any suggestions you'd like to add, please take a look at our new suggestions site and add them over there.

A little bit about the author

Adam is the Head of Software at Krystal. Adam looks after our software engineering team by day and, when not doing that, enjoys hobbies including LEGO, collecting playing cards, building mechanical keyboards and home automation.

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