First, I know we’re not ready to start our big sidebar overhaul yet. But I had some thoughts this morning and wanted to jot them down somewhere quickly before I forget to mention them…
I’m looking at the beta front end when I write this, so anything I mention should be taken in that context.
The current sidebar basically treats everything as “Related topics,” which isn’t really accurate. On a page within the reference for an interface, this space is dominated by links to other members of that interface. That stuff should be separated out into its own box, styled like the TOC above.
Then a separate “Related topics” box should be below that, listing out anything that’s in the “see these pages that might also be helpful” category. This box would be left out if it would be empty.
I think each of the boxes in the sidebar should be able to be collapsed down to just a button that you can then click again to re-open the box. This lets you minimize any that you don’t want to see at the moment. Ideally you’d also be able to rearrange them, but that’s for a distant future.