SitePoint Sponsor

User Tag List

Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Is there really a cross-browser drop-down menu?

    Hi,

    I am thinking of using a drop-down menu for a site I am making for a client. And after looking around it is really hard to tell if they are working for ex. mac users and all of the browsers.

    I have been looking at the A list apart drop-down menu(part 2) but that one is not working on mac! http://www.alistapart.com/articles/horizdropdowns/

    Is there a simple CSS dhtml menu working cross-browser???

    Thanks!

    Greetings from Snobba

  2. #2
    SitePoint Zealot Hieronymus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Nederland, Eindhoven
    Posts
    145
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Isn't it working on Mac? Have you tested it? There's nothing in the article that says it won't work, in fact, there's a hack that is specifically for IE/Win and not for IE/Mac.

    I don't have a Mac, so I can't check it for you.
    What good are one-liners if they don't
    fit.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    That is what I read in the comments on the autors site..But I have some people checking it now and I will post the result soon.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Addict
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    381
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Did you know using dropdown menu's is bad for usability? It usaly tells you your site structure is too complicated, maybe you could take an other look on that.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    No it is not too complicated. I just like the fact that is really easy to implement new pages(navbuttons) without interfering with the design or layout..If it would have worked it would have been great. But I never let go of something that doesn't work in the mac browsers.

    I only will have one sublevel - do you have some other suggestion of a nice looking vertical navbar? Been thinking as hell but I just can't come up with a fun sulotion.

    Is there any resourse page just full with different navbar solutions?? Not how they look really just the structure would be nice.

    Thanks!

    / Snobba

  6. #6
    SitePoint Addict
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    381
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    | Item 1 | Item 2 | Item 3 | Item 4 |
    | Item 1.1 | Item 1.2 | Item 1.3 | Item 1.4 |




    | Item 1 | Item 2 | Item 3 | Item 4 |
    | Item 2.1 | Item 2.2 | Item 2.3 | Item 2.4 |

    etc

  7. #7
    SitePoint Evangelist
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    England
    Posts
    588
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    >Is there a simple CSS dhtml menu working cross-browser???

    No. Even with js/DOM manipulation reliability is not guaranteed.

    And 'bad for usability...site structure... too complicated' is true.

    >other suggestion of a nice looking vertical navbar?

    Depends on your site design. I advise folk to consider 'understated and elegant' rather than the usual over-colored stuff. Think of the difference between a vintage Harley and an eighties Toyota.

    >Is there any resourse page just full with different navbar solutions?

    Yes. css.maxdesign.com.au/listamatic/

  8. #8
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks guys!

    Yes, I have now realized that I can't get it to work in some browsers and therefore nono.

    The reason why I wanted it is just that I do not know what to do with the sublevel menues. If I should have it in the original navbar(vertical) / under the navbar(horizontal) or in the content on the left-side with a horizonatal navbar....I just can't find a cool solution for this.

    And the problem is always what to put in this 'just opened sublevel' pages. Ofcourse I could put the first item on the sublevel as the opening page but it just doesn't feel right.

    Normally I have client with only 1 levels subcategories and I need some different solution...

    Does anyone understand what I mean?

    Thanks for any help! Maybe some link examples?

    / Snobba

  9. #9
    SitePoint Evangelist
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    England
    Posts
    588
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    >Does anyone understand what I mean? Maybe some link examples?

    Optimal presentation of secondary links is often a problem. The form/function balance within a good design is rarely straightforward and some compromise is always required.

    In a site with good architecture of zones/subzones with well-structured individual pages, presenting a handful of 'where next' options is no impediment to usability - and is enhanced where users are presented with a clear indicator of where they are in the site. Drilling through five levels need not be laborious and confusing - and often the info presented on the landing pages is more conducive to satisfaction than that available from single words on a multi-layer dropdown comprising perhaps fifty links.

    Examples? Perhaps Apple do it better than many - though far from optimally. (And the current main nav is both unnecessary eye candy and needlessly unstraightforward at times.) The strength is that the better of the main landing pages usually contain a strong image, around which are the drill-through options to sub-info.

    Returning to your original point... the ALA dropdown is one of the better examples - and is in fact trickier to reliably implement on MSIEWin than Mac. But that's still no reason to use it in preference to a saner alternative - something which doesn't require medicating with js in order to behave. As usual Zeldman speaks wisely at http://www.zeldman.com/daily/0704a.shtml

    A valid - though thoroughly off-topic - consideration is 'how are users viewing our content?'

    Some, parhaps many, take the view of 'I design for those with the most modern equipment'... which they usually mistakenly interpret as 'fast-processor Win-based and large monitors' ... and often totally ignore the growing use of handhelds - often the tool of choice for 'wealthy' users at whom many sites are targeted. Sure, by all means exclude 'poor people with 486, 13inch monitors and IE3'... but *do* consider how your stuff behaves on a cd-size screen. In this instance, all the work that goes into making dropdowns 'display properly' is not required and may just break the layout.

  10. #10
    SitePoint Wizard Dean C's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    2,906
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Sergeant
    Did you know using dropdown menu's is bad for usability? It usaly tells you your site structure is too complicated, maybe you could take an other look on that.
    I'd beg to differ on that issue. It's sometimes hard when you have a fairly large site to implement an organized content structure. Dropdowns can provide an easy and usable way for the user to navigate around a two-tier level of navigation.

  11. #11
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Thanks!

    In some way I have to agree with Dean C abit, about the usability. Maybe it is bad for a big site but for a small business I think it is great. But I have made a decition to not use a drop-down, because of the problems with different browsers.

    And as I have been looking around the web I see that a lot of sites really avoid using submenus(small-medium businesses). They either use a hell of a lot of main buttons or just 'submenus' a bit everywhere on the site...

    The apple navbar layout is a good way to go(even if the design is the 80's ) but with that one there is a limitation on how many subbuttons I can have due to the width the the layout.

    I found a neat looking layout using vertical and the sublevel in the contentpart which I liked: http://www.appliancestudio.com/index.html It feels naturaly connected to the main level. Hence that I am talking about the layout idee and not the design.

    Any other exemples of great sublevel layout?

    Greetings from Snobba

  12. #12
    SitePoint Addict
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    381
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Dean C
    I'd beg to differ on that issue. It's sometimes hard when you have a fairly large site to implement an organized content structure. Dropdowns can provide an easy and usable way for the user to navigate around a two-tier level of navigation.
    Here's the deal, I'm going into this because I think usability is getting more and more important.


    • The target of your homepage en navigational structure is to directly give as much insight as possible in your site structure. Drop down menu's hide in first instance their content! Only after a click or rollover, the menu opens and shows the actual content. Many users won't do this and while they're quickly scanning the content they don't even see that it are drop down menu's.

    • Dropdown menus are not crossbrowser, as you already discovered. Keep in mind the handhelds for example.

    • Users with an handicap have a really hard time using your dropdown menu. It's pretty hard to put the mouse on the exact spot. For example, try testing these menus in comparison to tabbed navigation using the touchpad from your laptop!

  13. #13
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Sergeant
    The target of your homepage en navigational structure is to directly give as much insight as possible in your site structure. Drop down menu's hide in first instance their content! Only after a click or rollover, the menu opens and shows the actual content. Many users won't do this and while they're quickly scanning the content they don't even see that it are drop down menu's.
    This argument doesn't make sense. Most websites with sublevels show their underlaying subbuttons after clicking a main button - on that category homepage. Or? We do not really want to have a 20 buttons navbar just to be able to show everything what is on the site? Your statement is arguing more FOR dropdowns. There we can see what is below every category.

    I agree with the fact that it would be great to show everything of the sites content but it would confuse a lot of visitors with a whole sitemap as a menu to display it.

    And I think people do like making a 'guided' choice instead of making a choice of a lot of options directly.

    This is getting really intresting! Nice to hear what others think.

    Greetings from Snobba

    P.S. I would be great if you could show a structure that you would like...

  14. #14
    SitePoint Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    3
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've found a couple that come close. You can make them as simple or as complicated as you like.

    http://www.dhtmlcentral.com/projects/coolmenus/?m=10
    http://www.milonic.com/

  15. #15
    SitePoint Addict
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    381
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    No, I'm definitaly not FOR dropdown menus. And yes, the argument DOES make sense.

    A visitor scans your page, always, not sometimes, always. You want to layout everything on your homepage so it gives maximum information even if you print it out. So no interaction is needed to see what the USER can find on your website. That would be the perfect website in sense of usability.



    In fact, it's pretty simple. If your website needs to have dropdown menu's because you have so many links...

    get rid of your links!

    Group them into a new page but don't place them in dropdown menu's. It basically says that your site structure is really too complicated for the END user.

    The easiest choice for a human being is to choose from two things. Not three, not four, just two.

    - You want A or B?

    or

    - You want A, B, C, D or E or even F? What about a.1, a.2, a.3, a.4? Hey wait a minute! There is even more! I created some nice dropdown menu's specially for you!


    You talk about 20 buttons, I talk about getting rid of ~18 of those buttons and put them on NEW pages.

    It's all about the end user. Your site structure is not important AT ALL! They just want to meet their goal <-- that's important.

  16. #16
    SitePoint Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    27
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hmmm, I just do not get your reasoning...You want to take links and put them in a subpage so what is then the difference? If you just have a couple of mainbuttons the user still can't see what is under them(where your subbuttons are to tell a lite bit of the content). And in a dropdown you ofcourse have the same site structure, the difference is just that the user will se what is under the different main buttons...It is the same site structure! So it is the same a,b,c,d,e,f!

    I only mentioned 20 buttons because I thought you really wanted ALL buttons on the site...

    But anyhow I am not going to use dropdowns anyway but I still think it is not a bad idee...

    Groetjes van Zweden


Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •