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View Poll Results: Should my popup menus...

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  • Disappear when the user's mouse leaves the menu?

    2 13.33%
  • Disappear x seconds after the user's mouse leaves the menu? (Please specify)

    6 40.00%
  • Disappear when the mouse is clicked away from the menu?

    4 26.67%
  • Other (Please specify)

    3 20.00%
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Thread: Dropdown menus

  1. #1
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Dropdown menus

    Hey all,

    I would appreciate your feedback regarding the above poll

    Thanks.

    -Sam
    Sam Hastings

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard
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    On behalf of my Mum whose opinion I asked (as she is a web 'novice'):

    Click elsewhere. Definitely do not make the menu go away by itself - in other words act as a Windows menu would.

    -Sam's Mum
    Sam Hastings

  3. #3
    Forensic SEO Consultant Webnauts's Avatar
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    DROP DOWN MENUS?
    Some sites using drop-down menu, would reload the page if the for example line (-----------) is selected, which can disorientate or confuse the user.

    Another issue is if the user is navigating with a keyboard, he type's the first letter, he is brought to the first word in the list that begin's with that letter. When there are more items with the same first letter, then the user has a problem. If he type's a second letter in the word he seek's, he goes to the first word that begin's with that letter.

    That is why I am am convinced, that selection lists are much more accessible and usable!

    Is it only my point of view?

  4. #4
    SitePoint Addict hurricane.uk's Avatar
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    I'd say a second or two after moving the mouse away from the menu. If it does it immediately then it's going to annoy people who don't have great mouse skills and maybe moved their mouse off by accident. If it doesn't hide itself until they click elsewhere then it's going to confuse people who are expecting it to hide itself, and annoy those of them who are scrolling past one option to get to another when they can't click their chosen link because one selection won't close itself.

  5. #5
    Intoxicated with the madness petertdavis's Avatar
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    I find web sites with drop down menus very difficult to use.
    Peter T Davis

    I buy forums - PM me if you're selling.

  6. #6
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    Wink My Choice

    Hello,

    I voted for a click method. I think that the menu systems in Microsoft Windows are quite intuitive, because you have to explicitly let go of them.

    I like dropdown menus considerably... a nice, compact way to display a great deal of navigation.

    Compuwhiz7

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Thanks for the replies. I've spoken with the person who I'm making the site for, and he wanted them to disappear when the mouse is moved away.

    Peter, would you mind explaining why they are hard to use? Thanks

    -Sam
    Sam Hastings

  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard Ian Glass's Avatar
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    I know what your client is thinking--"well, why have a menu open longer than a person wants, and when a person doesn't want a menu, they'll move off it"--but mouse movements can't really be taken as intent in a lot of cases.

    Reiterate to him that that's a very bad idea (especially if you're going to have sub menus), and with one slip of the mouse a person will loose wherever they were. People (or at least I do) hate having to move their mouse at right angles just to be able to move around a site. Tell him that a menu disappearing as soon as the mouse leaves it is unexpected and doesn't follow the conventions in operating systems and on other sites. And then try to avoid talks of mechanics with a client again, since they'll usually over think it or miss what you're saying (they have you to make these smaller decisions so they could concentrate on the bigger ones, right?).

    The global navigation (and I'm assuming that's what this is) is probably singularly the most used feature of your site. Even something that would simply be an annoyance elsewhere will become a repeated and highly annoying issue there.

    ~~Ian

  9. #9
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    I voted for "Disappear x seconds..." .

    The menu's I use are activated (drop down) on mouseover, and disappear 1.5 seconds after the mouse has moved away. I'll agree that sub-menus can be tricky, so I avoid them on websites.

    If the menu is activated however on mouse click, in that case would it make sense to disappear on mouse click away. This is how "Windows" drop down menus work.

  10. #10
    SitePoint Wizard DougBTX's Avatar
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    Dropdown menus tend to be irritating... that's why toolbars were invented.

    Douglas
    Hello World

  11. #11
    Forensic SEO Consultant Webnauts's Avatar
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    An interesting link to this topic:

    http://www.useit.com/alertbox/20001112.html


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