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Confluence is disturbing content developers from doing their work

When saving a page, why can't Confluence remain focused on the part of page I'm editing and reviewing? Right now it jumps to the top of the page, which is disturbing to the thinking/content development process.

Related to that, it is whole heartedly annoying that in 2022 Confluence requires an edit and save actions. It is an editor, let me click on the page exactly where I want to edit. At which point, like any modern editing experience, Confluence focus should not change AT ALL. There should be no loading time and slight movement of the page. Just let us edit where we clicked.

Save should happen automatically (when was the last time anyone saved a very large or small google doc, or a sheet. There should be no save button or any movement of the focus of the page.



1 answer

1 vote

It's because that doesn't work for collaborative editing.  When you're editing a page, Confluence is saving it as a draft every couple of minutes already.  

You are not expected to be saving a page and then carrying on editing.  The save is for when you (the team editing it, not the individuals) are happy with all the changes and are ready to publish them all.

I probably didn't explain my concerns very well. Allow me to divide it to parts.

The application behavior I wish Confluence will have is supported by plethora of modern editors, including those that support collaborative editing. I don't wish to highlight competitors here, so I'm going to mention only those tangentially related, Google docs, or Microsoft O365. Both with rich editing experience, inserting headings and tables and the likes, while supporting multi-user collaboration.

1) Entering edit should be in place by clicking a mouse on the word/sentence part one would like to start editing. There should be no perceived delay, and no flickering.

2) After saving the page should stay in place and not roll to the top of the page.

3) Both of above functionalities should have little to do with the requirement of having a Save button. I understand why it was (and maybe is for some users) important in Confluence in the past.

Ok, but then how would you do the clever stuff that Confluence does well?

1) Most people don't want to click to edit in place, they want to be able to do things like click to comment, start highlighting, or click to raise issues.  Click to edit is an anti-pattern for people who are just reading.

2) Save is committing all the current changes (which have been saved automatically anyway) and saying "we've finished editing for now".  Whilst preserving the position you're now reading at is not a bad thing, it's not that useful, because you need to refresh the page to display it in reading mode instead of edit.  It needs to be re-rendered, and that might actually change the positioning anyway.

3) I think I've explained that already.

Thank you Nic for your thoughtful reply. What you wrote make sense but I would like to ask you to think outside of what was right 20 years ago for Confluence. Modern users are used to clever staff done better these days and I do believe that both readers only and content creators can be satisfied.

1) Users can mark in their profile whether they are mostly Readers, or Content Creators.

2) With the advent of my proposal in 1 both audiences will get what they want. Click to edit and no refresh save for Creators, and an explicit Edit button for Readers.

Lastly, I would like to mention that content creators probably save their work dozens, if not hundreds of of times before they publish a page. So instead of clicking Edit and Save so many times we want to just do edit. Edit mode and autosave should be the new default. When we want to publish we can click an icon -- once.

Funny enough, I just noticed that Jira has click to edit. I love it and Atlassian engineering apparently know how to do it.

In both products there is already auto-save, so the only remaining product consideration is do we really need the Save button (and I proposed above how we can have it only when  explicitly needed) to publish.

Jira is a field based system, not a free text one.

As I've already explained, click to edit blocks the other useful functions that puts Confluence ahead of its competition and makes it easier to use both as an author and reader.

Yes, you need a save button in order to confirm that you have finished editing and want to publish your changes.

This design is not 20 years old, it was implemented in around 2017 when Atlassian realised that other collaborative editors were stuck in old ways of doing it and this is better for the readers and authors.

For one thing, it means you don't have to faff around with marking people as (primarily) readers or authors and then having to code a different UI for each.  That's a terrible thing to do to your users and developers.

>I would like to mention that content creators probably save their work dozens, if not hundreds of of times before they publish a page.

Why?  Why are they wasting their time doing that?

You don't have any need to with Confluence's implementation.  You only click save when you're ready to publish and it's a single action.

Like Elizabeth Barr likes this

Jira has an editor (the Description editor) that behaves almost as I think a modern editor should. Yet, it enables all that clever stuff that you are referring too. For all purposes it is the "same" editor features wise.

Except collaborative editing, versioning, macros, lookups, and and and...

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