New 2.1 screenshots, a Content Source and important announcements23 Comments
I bet you thought there wouldn’t be an update this week, since we were all shaking off the long weekend, huh? Not so!
We’re ecstatic to see that you all seem as excited about the coming release as we are, and so we’re still charging ahead with our work on SlideDeck 2.1. In this week’s update, we have some more screenshots for you, we’ll reveal a new Content Source, and share some of our plans for the new Addons system that’ll really shake things up.
Bring on the pretty pictures
First, let’s take a look at what sparkly treasures our design team has unearthed from the pixel mines, shall we?
We’ll start with the Custom SlideDeck editor this time, since this one has evolved the most since our last check-in. You can see here that the team has really paid a lot of attention to the slides navigation area at the top – not only with the custom icons to indicate what kind of content you’ve entered into each one, but also with little cues like the grooves to indicate that you can drag and drop the slides to sort them. Now, of course you’re not simply limited to only 5 custom slides – once the total number of slides exceeds the width of this bar, we’re planning to wrap them to 2+ rows. Why not have them slide left to right? Because dragging & dropping an icon to an off-screen area kind of sucks as an interaction. It’s far easier to sort a grid, than a partially-visible row!
You’ll also note the clearly defined content types available for each Custom slide. With just these four options, you’ll be able to create an extremely media-rich and varied experience within a single SlideDeck. Now, of course, each content type has its own particular configuration needs, and there’s no way we’d present you with a giant menu that simply throws them all together. This meant getting a bit clever with our ‘flyout’ menus:
Custom SlideDeck Content Flyout menus (Warning, epic PNG ahead!) | Click to see the full image
Much like the Content Source configuration panels you all know and love, we gave each Custom Slide type its own dedicated menu to streamline the process of entering and adjusting your content. This meant laying out each state and interaction – hence the epic PNG lying just behind that link above. Even though it’s a lot more design work to create multiple menu screens, we took this approach to keep the overall user experience simplified, and focused solely on the task at hand.
Ok, last one for now:
Revised Manage SlideDecks screen | Click to enlarge
The new Manage SlideDecks screen is drastically simplified, to offer users a simple choice: would you like to automatically create your SlideDeck by pulling from dynamic Content Sources, or build it slide-by-slide? Quick, easy and relatively painless. One challenge that we’re on the cusp of solving is the icon that accompanies each SlideDeck in the listing area below – how do we choose which one to show if Dynamic SlideDecks can now accommodate multiple Content Sources? We’ll, uh…get back to you on that one…
A brand new Content Source
Now that we’ve got your attention, let me tell you a story – one slow, lazy Thursday afternoon (that’s a lie, they’re never like that – but it’s good for the story, ok?), our developer Jamie casually sauntered over. “Hey guys”, he said, trying to appear nonchalant, “What do you think about 500px, as a new Content Source for SlideDeck 2.1?”. “Wow, that’d rock – too bad we can’t fit it into our schedule…”, we said.
That’s when Jamie broke into a huge grin. “Oops – I kinda already built it.”
That’s right, folks – as of SlideDeck 2.1, you’ll be able to create awesome image galleries using your exquisite photography on 500px, the hottest new photography community to hit the web since Flickr turned our worlds upside down way back in ’04!
Announcing Addons and other new names
Ok, we saved probably our biggest announcements for last. First, the simple one: our License Tiers are getting new names! We’re on this whole kick to provide more value in the different tiers (more on this in a sec), so we felt we should update their names to reflect the groups that are best suited to them. Everyone, say hello to your new License Tiers:
- Single-site » Personal
- Multi-site » Professional
- Unlimited » Developer
Speaking of adding more value, we’re always on the lookout for opportunities to make things better, and SlideDeck’s functionality is no different. We’ve created new tiers of the plugin so that you can tailor the functionality to your specific needs. As of the 2.1 update, you’ll be able to purchase and install Addons from within the plugin that enhance the functionality of your sliders! Think of them as little plugins within SlideDeck. To begin with, the Addons will simply grant Professional and Developer (Multi and Unlimited) License holders access to the more advanced functions of SlideDeck, but we’re planning to make additional Lenses, Content Sources and other awesome stuff available via this system down the road.
Here’s a quick summary of how it’s all going to play out for the 2.1 update. Important Note: Current SlideDeck 2 customers won’t lose any functionality as a result of this change to the tiers – we promise.
Personal (Single-site) License
- Use on one site
- Has access to all Content Sources (except Your Media Library and List of Videos sources)
- Has access to Multi-source functionality
Professional (Multi-site) License
- Use on up to 3 sites
- Includes all functionality in the Personal License, plus
- Image, Video and Rich Text Custom Slide types
Developer (Unlimited) License
- Use on up to eleventy-billion sites
- Includes all functionality in the Professional License, plus
- HTML Custom Slide type, and the ability to create custom Lenses
Now, you may be wondering how we’ll ensure that no-one loses any functionality? It’s actually pretty easy: all current Single-site License holders will get a FREE upgrade to the Professional Tier, once this update goes live!
Ok, that was a lot of typing, so for those of you who hate reading, here’s a quick sketch summary of what’s about to go down for current SlideDeck 2 customers (hint: basically, everyone wins).
An illustrated guide to the new SlideDeck 2.1 Tiers | Click to see the full diagram
Whew, we covered a lot of ground in this one! Ok, you have tons of questions, I know it, so let us hear them in the comments!