[whatwg] Web Applications 1.0 and Menu Labels
mpt at myrealbox.com
Mon Nov 22 02:25:20 PST 2004
On 22 Nov, 2004, at 7:26 AM, Ian Hickson wrote:
> On Sun, 19 Sep 2004, Matthew Raymond wrote:
>> |disabled| - You may not always want a submenu label enabled.
> It's my understanding that disabling a menu is considered poor form,
> and that it is better to disable all the children. (mpt?)
The terms "disable" and "disabled" are ambiguous for a menu/submenu
title, because making it "disabled" as in dimmed (grayed out) does not
make it "disabled" as in unopenable. So when all the items in a
menu/submenu are unavailable, it's best to make the menu itself
apparently unavailable too. Then people won't waste time by opening the
menu just in case there is an available item inside, but they can still
open the menu to explore the scope of the program if they want to.
* Windows: "If all items in a menu are disabled, disable its menu
title. If you disable a menu item or its title, the user can still
browse to it or choose it."
* Mac OS X: "If all of the items in a menu or submenu are unavailable,
the menu or submenu title is dimmed. The user can still open the
menu, but all of its items are dimmed to indicate that these items
are not available in the present context."
Given that, I approve of giving menus and submenus a "disabled"
attribute that would make all their descendant items unavailable
without forgetting the erstwhile availability of individual descendant
items. This attribute would relieve applications from having to
remember the particular subset of descendant items that were previously
available, during those occasions when they are all temporarily being
made unavailable (for example, a "Format" menu while focus is
temporarily in a plain-text field secondary to the main rich-text
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