Simplify the Drupal UI with the Content Tools module

I've just released the first version of Content Tools for Drupal 7. This module aids the content creation process by simplifying some of the UI elements and workflow.

Drupal's backend can be intimidating for non-technical users. It looks like it was built by developers and could really use a good UI/UX overhaul. Additionally the process of creating content is slowed down by needing to click through the various vertical tabs at the bottom of the page to find settings such as tags, whether or not to publish to the front page, and other commonly used fields.

Additionally, with a variety fo third party modules enabled, the primary tabs shown above a node can become unruly. Fine for power users but confusing for many end-users that just want a clean interface to create content. 

Having rolled out publishing systems to many newspapers I've found the most common complaint to be "why do I have to click so much".

This module addresses some of the above issues by introducing the following components:

It provides a block giving users a quick access to create content via a dropdown menu:

 

It hides the primary tabs by default.
These are replaced with the most common items such as edit, info, and revisions with simple and less obtrusive icons. The original tabs are still available via a toggle icon:

 

Easy access to common node fields:
When creating or editing content it provides a floating palette with the most commonly used fields such as the Publish checkbox, Promoted to Front Page, Tags field, and the Save button. This means content creators can stay on the body field and work with the content and then just specify their settings and click save:

 

Additionally it provides a few other small tweaks such as:

  • When the user edits a node it automatically scrolls to the top of the body field.
  • It collapses the text formats field under the body field. I find this field tends to just confuse users and a lot of site creators use workarounds to hide it.
  • It increases the default height of the body field. The default is pretty tiny normally and most people end up manually dragging it larger.

You can find more details and download the module from the github repo:
https://github.com/akempler/ContentTools

Please use the github issue queue to report any bugs or feature requests.

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