For the past year, we’ve been deeply focused on our goal of moving towards a single app platform, offering the full capabilities of Publish within the newer, more flexible Bolt. As part of these plans, we also need to address how the Express editing experience many of you use will adapt to present this newly expanded feature set.
Our goals with these changes are fourfold
- To empower and encourage you to use Bolt’s newfound edition capabilities
- To arrange menu items more clearly, with a more obvious hierarchy
- To make it clearer how this translates to the way your content will appear in the app
- To keep things simple and intuitive. You shouldn’t have to relearn much, if anything, to continue using Express the way you always have
For those of you currently using Publish, these changes won’t appear for you yet, but it still might be worth a read to get a feeling for how things will look for you in the future. And those of you who’ve fully automated your workflows need not worry either, everything will keep working smoothly under the hood.
Below we’ve detailed all of the key changes
Bolt now supports Editions and Timelines and, while technically they’re very similar, the way they’re handled is often quite different. As such we’ve separated them out into two distinct categories under the Collections heading.
We’ve also made two terminology changes to better represent what things do.
- Timeline tags have evolved into collection tags to allow you to assign content to a given edition, timeline (or both!)
- Timeline groups are now tab groups, to make it clearer what they do, which is sort timelines and editions into the relevant tab in your app
To avoid cluttering your UI, you’ll only see the collection types relevant to your publication, but if you do want to explore the other side, get in touch and it’s the work of but a moment to turn it on for you.
There are many types of content that can be added to your Bolt app, some of these you create all the time, some you might hardly touch. Either way, the menu was getting a bit much. We’ve now collated all of the different content types under the Content heading, creating a much clearer hierarchy in the menu. Remember that the fastest way to create something new is always through the “+ New” item in the toolbar
3. Widgets are dead, long live Cards
The word “widgets” hasn’t sat well with us for a while and this feels like the time to make the change. Cards now refer to anything on the timeline that doesn’t have a page attached to it. I.e Video, Audio, Tweets are all now cards and will be referred to as such in the UI. Content that does have its own page, such as an Article, is simply that, an Article. This change doesn’t just sound better, but should make it clearer what kind of content you’re creating.
4. Edition settings
Those of you who are creating editions will notice a few new options in the edition screen.
- Cover: here you can upload your edition cover, which will also appear at the top of the table of contents (ToC)
- Show section headers: This will break up your ToC with section headers if they’re present in the feed
- Show timeline in app: Customers who don’t have detailed ToCs, such as simple PDF editions, might want to skip them altogether, this enables you to do just that and fire users straight to the first page of the edition.
And that’s it! The experience of creating content and managing timelines remains unchanged, this is all just about bringing Editions into Bolt in a way that’s easy to use and synergistic with both Bolt’s content structure and the workflows you’ve developed.
We believe this will make the update to Bolt not just painless, but empowering, and we’re excited to get it live and in your hands.
As ever, if you have any questions, problems or suggestions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at email@example.com, we’d be delighted to help.