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Following on from our previous post, you’ll know about some of the difficulties and challenges we’ve faced over the years in ensuring a consistent user experience can be delivered for our users, regardless of which web browser they’re using.

In response to customer feedback, updating and improving some of the visual elements of MIDAS has been the main focus for our next update, v4.20.

This blog post outlines some of the key visual changes we’re making in order to improve the user interface (UI).


Deprecating some old, less popular themes

The standard (non-HiRes) version of the “Default” theme is being retired, along with the “Pastel” and “Classic” themes.

Pastel Theme for MIDAS
The “Pastel” theme (shown above) was the least used optional theme by our customers. We may re-introduce a similar theme in the future, but for the time being the “Pastel” theme will no longer be available in v4.20

Classic v3 Theme for MIDAS
The “Classic” theme (shown above) was originally introduced with the release MIDAS v4.00 and was based on the icons in the previous pre-v4.00 interface for MIDAS. As there were significant changes made to various icons between MIDAS v3 and v4, the “Classic” theme’s primary purpose was to ease the transition to v4 for long standing customers familiar with icons from v3. MIDAS v3 was superseded by v4 over six years ago now, and so this interface is now very dated. As such, the “Classic” theme will no longer be available inn MIDAS v4.20.

Standard Resolution Default Theme for MIDAS
The non-HiRes version of the “Default” theme (shown above) was primarily aimed at self-hosted customers who were installing MIDAS onto a server which didn’t support serving SVG images. The non-HiRes default theme version was identical to the “Default-HiRes” theme, but with high resolution SVG icons substituted for lower resolution PNG images.

Nowadays, all modern servers can be configured to correctly serve SVG images, with the majority of them being able to serve such content natively. (All our cloud-hosted customers are defaulted to the high resolution, rather than the standard resolution, “Default” theme)

The purpose of the non-HiRes “Default” theme is therefore now for all intents and purposes redundant, and so it has been removed from v4.20.


Updating Existing Themes

High Resolution SVG graphics in MIDAS
The previous “Default-HiRes” theme has been updated and renamed to “Default” for v4.20. The “BrushedSteel”, “HiContrast” and “Slate” themes have all had a face lift too. All of these themes now boast high resolution SVG icons, and improved layouts.

Brushed Steel Theme for MIDAS

High Contrast Theme for MIDAS

Dark Slate Theme for MIDAS

We’ve also increased the size of some visual elements to better aid those with sight difficulties or those accessing MIDAS on very small screen devices. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the login screen under the hi resolution “Default” themes in both v4.19 (left) and v4.20 (right):

MIDAS v4.19 login screen MIDAS v4.20 login screen
v4.19 Login Screen v4.20 Login Screen

Introducing New Themes!

We’re also adding THREE exciting new, high resolution themes to v4.20!

Honeycomb

New Honeycomb theme for MIDAS

Squares

New lilac Squares theme for MIDAS

Wood

New Wood effect theme for MIDAS

Additional new themes may also be added down the line, but for v4.20 a total 7 distinctly different themes will be included as standard. No longer will there be a need to download and install (in the case of self-hosted customers) or request (in the case of cloud-hosted customers) additional optional themes for your MIDAS system. All 7 of these themes are included as standard.


Custom themes

Self-hosted customers will also still be able to “tweak” and customize their own visual themes for MIDAS, however the process for doing so will be slightly different then before. We’ll shortly be updating our Knowledgebase with instructions in this regard.


Future development

The new way in which themes are handled starting with v4.20 will make it easier for us to introduce further themes in the future, as well as lay future foundations for an often requested “white label” edition of MIDAS.


MIDAS v4.20 is coming soon, however we would love you comments and feedback on these theme updates! Please consider joining our Beta Test so that you can explore these new and improved themes for yourself (Oh, and we reward our Beta testers too!)

MIDAS and Internet Explorer 11

Here are MIDAS HQ we love getting feedback from our customers! Whether positive or critical, all feedback is important to us as it helps us to continually develop and improve our MIDAS room booking & resource scheduling software and service to make it the best it can be!

Our customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive, and you can read some of these comments on our website and also on independent review sites such as TrustPilot.

However, in recent times a handful of customers have commented specifically in relation to the user interface (UI) of MIDAS, which a few perceive as now a little “dated”.

We wanted to begin addressing this for our next MIDAS update, v4.20, and so we’ve introduced a number of changes and improvements in this area which you can read about in the following blog post.

However, we also thought it would be useful to explain some of the challenges we’ve faced with regards to the UI over the years.

As you may or may not know, MIDAS has been in continuous active development for well over a decade, and our philosophy has always been to support ALL popular web browsers (Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Opera, Apple Safari, and more recently Microsoft Edge).

Room Booking System for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, and Edge This has been an enormous task over the years, but we feel strongly that our users should have a choice of which web browser they use, with a consistent MIDAS experience between browsers, and not be forced to use one particular browser in order to be able to access and use our MIDAS software.

It’s fair to say that the most difficult web browser to maintain support for over the years continues to be Microsoft’s Internet Explorer series, primarily because it has always lagged way behind all other vendor’s browser offerings in terms of its development, updates, and support for the latest standards (the web has developed and evolved significantly over the years we’ve been developing MIDAS, and Internet Explorer doesn’t keep up!).

To some extent we’ve been “held back” over the years by our decision to continue to support customers who force their uses to use Internet Explorer, however, as of today the only version of Internet Explorer we officially support is 11, having deprecated support for IE10 & 9, IE8, IE7, and IE6 over the past decade.

MIDAS and Internet Explorer 11 Continuing to support MIDAS in IE11 for the very small (and ever decreasing) percentage of our users who continue to use this old browser limits how we can develop MIDAS, particularly in terms of the user interface.

Whilst we would have loved to have dropped IE11 support long ago, Microsoft have committed to providing mainstream support for IE11 until the end of life of the operating systems upon which it is installed – namely, Windows 7, 8 and 10. Windows 7 & 8 have both now reached their EOL (End Of Life) for mainstream support, however Windows 10 is still actively supported by Microsoft and will continue to be for the foreseeable future (for a minimum of at least two years).

That’s why we’ve taken the difficult – but necessary – decision that at some point during 2019 we’ll officially be dropping IE11 support in MIDAS.

This won’t necessarily mean that MIDAS will suddenly cease to function for IE11 users next year, but it does mean that over time new features and new user interface elements and enhancements may not display or even function correctly if you continue to access MIDAS using Internet Explorer 11.

If you’re currently an IE11 user, there is however, plenty of time to switch to a different web browser and there’s plenty of choice when it comes to modern alternative web browsers.

MIDAS will continue to be supported in recent versions of Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Edge, and Opera.

We appreciate that this may affect a very small number of users, but we hope this blog post gives some insight and understanding as to why we’re making this decision and also gives you plenty of time to switch to an alternative, more modern, web browser.

As ever, if you have any questions or concerns over how this may impact you and your organization’s use of MIDAS, please don’t hesitate to contact us and our friendly team will be only too happy to help!

MIDAS v4.19 Out Now!

Whilst the UK have been basking in a prolonged heatwave, and preoccupied by the excitement of major sporting events such as the World Cup, Wimbledon, and the Formula One British Grand Prix, we’ve been beavering away on the next update to MIDAS, our popular web based room booking and resource scheduling software.

Today, we’re excited to announce that the latest update to MIDAS (v4.19) is now available!

As our customers have come to expect from our regular releases, this latest update boasts a variety of new and improved features, many of which are as a result of customer feedback.

Here’s What’s New & Improved in v4.19:

How To Get MIDAS v4.19…

New To MIDAS?

We are committed to fair and accessible pricing for all organizations regardless of size. We’re totally upfront and transparent about our pricing structure, and you can purchase MIDAS v4.19 securely through our website and be up and running in no time!

“Self Hosted” Customers:

Self-Hosted customers with ongoing Annual Support Subscriptions will be able to update to v4.19 in the coming days. It only takes a couple of clicks – simply log in to your MIDAS system and go to MIDAS Admin Options → Manage MIDAS → Update

“Cloud Hosted” Customers:

Cloud-Hosted customers don’t need to do anything! – All our active Cloud-Hosted MIDAS customers have now been automatically updated to this latest version of MIDAS!

Thank you for your continued support of our software, and we hope you’ll enjoy the new and improved features that MIDAS v4.19 has to offer!

NHS Staff DiscountOften viewed as the envy of the rest of the world, the UK’s National Health Service celebrates its 70’s birthday today!

To celebrate this milestone, throughout July we’re offering NHS staff £70 OFF our MIDAS Room Booking & Resource Scheduling Software!

..and best of all, this discount can be used to purchase MIDAS on behalf of ANY business or community organization!

NHS staff can claim this special discount right now at https://mid.as/nhsdiscount

So if you know someone who works within the NHS, please feel free share this very special limited time offer with them.

Don’t work (or know anyone who works) for the NHS? Well, make sure you follow us on Social Media as we run special offers and discounts through our social media channels from time to time (in fact, we ran an offer just last month!)

The forthcoming update to MIDAS – our popular web based room booking and resource scheduling software – includes a handful of small, but none the less useful, updates and improvements to the extensive Invoicing capabilities within the software.

We often receive ideas and suggestions from our customers as to what new features and improvements they’d like to see when it comes to invoicing within MIDAS, and so our next update (v4.19) will feature..


A new “View Only” option for the “Can use invoicing” user permission

Existing MIDAS administrators will know of the powerful set of permissions that can assigned to accounts on a per-user basis.

One of the available permissions is the “Can use invoicing” setting. This setting allows administrators to allow/deny each user the ability access to MIDAS’ Invoicing features.

Previously, this permission had three possible settings:

  • No – User has no access to any of the invoicing features
  • Yes – User has full access to all of the invoicing features
  • Limited – User may create/generate invoices, but may only view/modify/delete invoices which they created/generated (i.e. they will not have access to invoices added by other users)

For v4.19 we’re adding a forth option to this permission – “View Only“. User’s who’s “Can use invoicing” permission has been set to “View Only” will be able to view all invoices, but will not be able to modify, delete, email or print them, nor will they be able to generate or create new invoices.

This new option will be useful to organizations who wish to grant “read only” access to their invoices, for example, for the purposes of auditing.


Exporting invoice summaries in Excel format will format “Invoice Dates” as Excel dates (rather than as text)

In the previous update to MIDAS (v4.18), we introduced the ability to export invoice summaries in native Excel (.xlsx) format.

We’re made a small improvement to this for v4.19 in that invoice dates will now be formatted as Excel dates rather than as a regular text string.

This will allow for easier manipulation/format of dates when viewing your exported invoice summaries in Excel.


Tax Amount and Grand Total fields become editable

After you generate or create a new invoice in MIDAS, you may freely edit its contents prior to “finalizing” it (printing/emailing to the client).

When editing invoices, by default, MIDAS will automatically re-calculate totals when you make changes. For example, if you charge $50/hour for room hire and you’ve invoiced for 2 hours, the line total on the invoice would be $100. If you then manually change the quantity from 2 to 3 hours, MIDAS will automatically re-calculate the line total of the invoice to $150, and the grand total of the invoice accordingly.

A small “Calculate Totals” tick box is present when modifying invoices, and if un-ticked will prevent MIDAS from automatically calculating totals, allowing you to specify manual amounts if necessary.

However, in earlier version, with the “Calculate Totals” box un-ticked whilst you could modify item rates, quantities, line totals, and tax rate, the tax amount value and grand total values would still be automatically calculated and couldn’t be manually adjusted.

We’ve changed this for v4.19 so that when the “Calculate Totals” box un-ticked, you’ll be able to manually modify the value of any field on your invoice.


We’ve also made one other small change relating to invoices for v4.19, relating to the way that a client’s “Paid in Full” and “Outstanding” invoices were displayed in the Booking Information Panel.

Previously, these lists were sorted in ascending order (i.e. the client’s oldest paid invoice would appear at the top of the list “Paid in Full” list of invoices).

We’ve changed this sort behavior to descending order for v4.19, so that the client’s most recently paid/outstanding invoices will be shown at the top (rather than the end) of each respective list.


Click here to continue reading about some of the other new & improved features coming in MIDAS v4.19!

MIDAS v4.19 is coming soon! To be notified when it becomes publicly available, please join our mailing list, or to be among the very first to try the v4.19 “Beta”, why not join the Beta Test? (We reward our Beta testers too!)