types of error messages and notifications in web apps
I'm doing some research on best practices for error messages, warning and confirmation messages for web applications.
Right now I'm making a list of all the shapes these messages can take in an interface.
I've come up with 5 approaches and I'm thinking about where/when they're appropriate, for which types of messages and scenarios, and how they might not be a good idea sometimes.
here is my list so far:
1) the notification area used accross the app, always in the same part of the interface, usually somewhere at the top. Here is an example.
2) contextual messages, for instance next to a form field that's causing the problem (see this article)
3) modal windows
4) browser dialog boxes
5) growl type of message : they pop up in one area of the screen (as opposed to an area of the interface), hence overlaying some of the interface. They either pop up and dissapear by themselves or they wait for the user to close them. Example here.
My questions are :
- have you identified other forms of notifications?
- do you know any good online resources about this topic?
- how do you personally feel about browser dialog boxes in web apps? I find them terribly annoying most of the time, and I wonder if it's just me :)
Thanks in advance for your thoughts