It’s always great to hear that SG is considering improving the way Shotgun is presented to the people who use it. Adding greater ways to customise things is always wanted!
I remember speaking with Ben Haddon about 4 years ago when there was a large effort to effectively change the UI in an effort to make it easier for people to learn Shotgun.
The problem with those changes, was that it was not an improved version of Shotgun that had been designed, it was an entirely different approach to managing the data that Shotgun contains. At first glance, this might not seem like an issue, but really it is, as in that instance, people weren’t being exposed to a ‘simplified version of Shotgun’, but something utterly different.
My feedback at the time (which was incredibly comprehensive), focused on ensuring that efforts to simplify the navigation or UI, should not be at the expense of the core benefits that Shotgun offers (lots of power, lots of configuration).
I put it this way; think of Shotgun as a car. When someone walks up to a car, it looks pretty simple, they open a door, hop in and sit down. You can then teach them to drive the car, which takes a bit of time, but the basic concepts are pretty simple too; push this, turn that. Now, that person sees a car as a pretty simple thing, but in reality, under the hood, behind the door panels, inside the dash, there is a huge amount of complexity. It’s all there, and accessible if they want to open the hood, or remove the door panels, or pull out the dash. But they are still sitting in the car, which appears simple, with all of it’s complexity accessible to them if they want it to be.
If your refinements to the navigation use a similar philosophy, then I’m excited!