I’ve uploaded BaseElements 3 beta 10. Download links :

BaseElements_Mac.dmg – fp7 files.
BaseElements_Mac_Runtime.dmg – Runtime.

BaseElements_Win.zip – fp7 files.
BaseElements_Win_Runtime.zip – Runtime.

I was going to do a little more playing with this version before uploading it, but there are some fixes in it for a crashing bug and also some import issues, so I wanted to get this one out so that people testing can try again. I’m tempting fate ( like I did with b9 ) by posting this version late at night, my time, but that gives me a full northern hemisphere day of testing while I sleep 🙂

The big thing is that this version has a completely new UI. It’s fully integrated but may be tweaked slightly before final.

Left Side Nav vs Top Nav

I have wanted to switch to a top menu for a while. I like the left nav, and if you do it inside a portal you can have really dynamic menu items with expanding options and lots of details and a single UI element to display, so no changes to layouts once it’s setup. But realistically, unless we get the ability to have left side navigation bars in FMP 12 ( I think unlikely 🙂 ) it just doesn’t work perfectly. I’ve come to the conclusion that in a solution where list and table views are so important, like in BE, then a consistent, always available navigation option is better than a cool looking one.

So the new UI is firstly about moving the nav to the top, and secondly about cleaning it up a little. If you have a look at beta 10, there are a couple of extra layouts at the end of the file. Basically they’re a progression through our development process and ideas as we worked through some plans. I thought they might be interesting to others, so I’ve left them in b10.

The icons are gone. I really liked them, I bought a set ages ago, so I was keen to use them. But it was pointed out to me, and quite rightly, that I’m trying to reduce clutter and unnecessary UI elements. And icons that look good, but don’t add any significant functionality don’t fit that aesthetic. ( It’s tough when your blog posts get raised in design discussions against you. )

If you have any thoughts or comments on the new design, please let me know : Email, contact form, or twitter.