At last! I'm writing about this. In the past few months a few improvements happened on the site. Some visible, some not. Some big, some are just cosmetic details.
Some of them have been available to users for a few weeks already but they have not been properly introduced, and not everybody must be aware of them and what's interesting about them .
Bigger bra pictures
Starting with the smaller things. Now when you make your pictures to be visible next to your bra, there will be a link to show a gallery of big pictures. This is much better when you just want to share your pictures elsewhere. No need to upload on multiple websites if you already shared your pictures here .
I think this one is pretty cool. Thanks to the use of Index sizes, we can put the sizing of two brands side by side. This helps to quickly know which cup corresponds to another in a different brand.
You will now see a Compare to other brand button on the page for each brand. That will ask you which is the other brand you want to compare with and then will show the match up.
Before you way anything! Yes! There's a disclaimer there that an equivalence in cups or bands does not mean equal fit. And if the bands you compare use different grading the sizes won't match, specially for larger cups (That's an important known caveat of the Index sizes). Remember, always go by measurements.
Still, I find this feature useful to get a quick glance at a brand's range .
Improvements on breast measurements
Cleaner and easier to track measurements
The old measurements screen was a bit of a mess trying to display all your entries in historic fashion and caused confusion with many users on when should they modify or add new data.
The new screen will have more instructions on when to do each of those and will make it clear which are your current measurements and what is your past data.
Additionally, you will be able to see a small graph that displays your fluctuations over time.
Share your measurements
Now, it is possible to link other people to your measurements! You will be able to make a public URL for your measurements so you can include them on other websites and give it to people you want.
No more need to re type your measurements everywhere! No more need to convert between inches and cm when seeing at other person's data! Just sharing the same link will get it all worked out.
When sharing your measurements there's a set of options you can pick to improve privacy.
To do it, click on the options menu (three vertical dots on the right) on the your latest measurements and go for the "Share" option.
When adding new measurements, now you will have the option to keep track of custom fields. You can enter there any other piece of data you want to keep track of.
They will be visible to you when you see your measurements and others who you share them with (if desired).
Integration with breast shapes
This one has been out for a few weeks already. After entering your measurements you are now prompted to pick the breasts that resemble most to yours. Or skip that altogether.
This starts to tie in the site's calculations with the breast shapes as once promised and it's giving some interesting results. I find that they as an only source are not enough, but provide good information to further assist recommendations.
The last big piece of work. I've been promising this for ages and never made them public because I've been chickening out. I think it's time to give them a go. Specially since the old ones were doing so bad.
The main problems the old recommendations had were:
- They were bad
- They were bad
- They were difficult to understand
- They were SLOW
- They crashed for many people
All those points have been addressed in some degree. The first thing you will notice is a very different interface for them.
When going to the recommendations screen you will be prompted to select which of your measurements you want recommendations for (most likely the most recent).
Then, the site will do the calculations on the background, this will take care of all the crashes that people have had. It will still take a minute but you are safe to close that screen and come back to it later. They are still slow, but won't slow you down .
Your results will now include a range of possible sizes that will work for you. These are obtained from tallying the individual results and looking at which sizes work best on the brands suggested.
They are no longer grouped by confidence, but by brand. The concept of confidence (from now on "weight") is still used, but given the change in algorithms and stricter thresholds it is not as relevant as before since most of the bad stuff is now pruned. Read more of how the recommendations work for Bratabase.
One complaint I heard a lot in the past with the recommendations was how they included a few suggestions that were completely out of range alongside with other likely options.
The engine now includes a set of heuristics that are smarter on spotting these outliers. This is all now possible thanks to the usage of index sizes.
Now, you can make your recommendations public and share the link to other people so it is easier to explain and show what your results were.
As mentioned above, the introduction of index sizes is a game changer for the recommendations. In the past, the engine would blindly look at the averages and put them together from all the channels inside the recommendations.
Now, we take into consideration a lot or new factors. We can now do post processing of the initial results and analyze what seems reasonable and what is out of range.
The existing channels have been improved to use index sizes and to detect better bad entries, so recommendations that are due bad user measurements are easier to spot and get fixed.
Many other improvements and fixes
In this time those have not been the only changes on the site, some of you may have noticed some changes on the screens to upload pictures and to write reviews. They are now mobile friendly and much less cluttered.
There are always bugs along the way that get fixed, performance improvements here and there. Privacy enhancements where possible.
The listings section is due to improvements as well, there have been a lot of feature requests which seem very reasonable so that should be one of the main focus.
Will also be working on site's looks and visualizations. Again the site feels a bit dated and the introduction of features has caused clutter in many places making them difficult to discover. There are handfuls of options that most people is not aware of due bad UI. Along with that, I'll start to look for ways to better display the data we have. Averages can only give you so much information, but there is much more information when looking at the data as a whole, so I'd like to explore that.
Improvements on users' profiles. I'd like to start making them have more protagonism on the Internet. There's a lot of potential and very useful information to be communicated by just sharing your Bratabase profile elsewhere.