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I am developing an OS reporting system for PHP, it's main emphasis is right now on the server side of things.
I am trying to look for examples of good UIs for reporting systems. The problem: there are dozens of reports, each linked to the other, how do you navigate between them? How do you know the path you took to get to a specific report etc.

Any examples out there?

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You may also find some good advice by searching ux.stackexchange.com –  blubb Aug 1 '11 at 19:09

2 Answers 2

There are two sites from where I tend to get inspirations.

One is Little Big Details that show little tips that makes some UIs amazing.

The other one is Quince which shows a collection of user interface patterns (reporting included).

Just my 2 cents.

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Didn't know about Quince, great link! –  Jalayn Aug 1 '11 at 16:52

Unfortunately you haven't given us enough details to really give you a detailed answer... However, many principles still exist universally in the development of a UI. One of the trickiest things programmers have to overcome is the temptation to make a programmer friendly UI. By this I mean they tend more often then not to be such that if you're a programmer its easy to use but there aren't enough safe guards to prevent novice users from making mistakes or messing things up royally. Also we tend to lean towards a more lean and mean design over putting in some of the fluff that really adds to the user experience. Some of this might not apply if it will only be technical people accessing it.

Other things to consider: You will need to spend a lot of time thinking about how you will need to access the information. If it won't be you accessing it then you'll need to find out what things would be helpful from the people that will be. Really the point of programming is to make the user's life easier and make it possible for them to do something they couldn't do before. This information will greatly impact how you arrange things and the way you create the workflow for the program's UI.

As for navigation you could have some sort of a menu/sub-menu system? Again with out more details its difficult to give you a more specific answer than that...

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can you give me some leading questions as to what info you think is missing in my question? –  Itay Moav -Malimovka Jul 2 '11 at 16:17
    
Honestly you haven't provided any specific information at all... For example: "The problem: there are dozens of reports, each linked to the other, how do you navigate between them?" What does this mean? This could mean a great many things each of which would have a different (or several different) solution. The key to designing a useful UI is to know the reason behind the need for the app well enough to know what is helpful and what is not. If you haven't put a lot of thought into this area you will not be able to develop a good UI regardless of any input you get here. –  Kenneth Jul 2 '11 at 19:47

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