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"New" first impressions from an experienced xstate machine user
I'm a big fan of xstate and the new generation stately. I used xstate a bunch about 2 years ago. The new Stately visualizer inspired me to use it again. I thought that I would share a list of "issues" that I bumped into while using the application. To be clear, this is a great app. It's because it is so good, including the meta like this feedback page, that I took the time to generate this list of "observations". I hope they help inform what a new user might experience outside the knowledge base required to build a machine. No idea how to add and edit an annotation (like the one in the initial template); naming Note vs Annotation may be part of the problem. May want to increase the number of places we can add an Annotation/Note. Need to be able to show/hide actions Need to edit code in the visualizer <> Code panel. Include an option to format the code in a way that is particularly useful for xstate configuration (aligns colons, so, not aligned left with indentations) Need to drag and drop precisely where edge joins the node (already posted this feature request) Can’t find a way to delete a previously added description on the canvas (understand, need to delete text in detail view) Publish the benefits of upgrading to v5 in more than one place (difficult to find; changelog is good but too fragmented for the purpose of over-all benefit including a view to the future) [IMPORTANT] When the code gets updated, do not throw away a previously formatted, visualized machine. At minimum, always save the version before importing. At minimum, do not erase annotations/notes. Generally when in doubt for how the events should be generated on the canvas, follow a norm set by something like LucidChart e.g., the zoom in and out feature was accessed using unexpected key combination (there is none, just hit + or -, is great but not something I've experienced elsewhere, and thus something new to learn). How I see the canvas: The machine is a good way to document and display a process. Thus could be an important component within the canvas, and not be the Canvas itself. This would allow a clear division between machine and meta such as Annotations. When zoom out, keep the chart in the center of the window (now when go from “bottom right” of chart @100%, to 40%, much of the chart is hidden “top left”. In the documents, have a separate, dedicated section to all the different ways we can add explanatory/meta information. The ability to document the machine in different ways is a powerful/useful feature. For the following options, how might one use them to complement etc.. Clarify what gets recorded in the code base of the machine. 1. meta 2. tags 3. annotations/notes 4. description 5. Other?? When requested to refresh to update the stately app, perhaps have a menu item that lets the person view a summary of the updates (or point to the changelog entry) I hope this helps. No need to respond in detail. I have figured much of this out, but am sharing as there were "pot-holes" on the on-boarding ramp.
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