[whatwg] Status bars and progress indicators

Matthew Thomas mpt at myrealbox.com
Thu Sep 23 06:09:17 PDT 2004

On 23 Sep, 2004, at 10:00 PM, Daniel O'Connor wrote:
> On Thu, 23 Sep 2004 05:30:47 -0400, Matthew Raymond
> <mattraymond at earthlink.net> wrote:
>> Daniel O'Connor wrote:
>>> HTML shouldn't give the user agent any kind of direction on rendering
>>> of controls,

Perhaps, but there's a point where such device-agnosticism becomes more  
religious than useful -- making life unnecessarily difficult for Web  
authors trying to remember which element does what. <input  
type="checkbox">, <input type="radio">, and <button> all have names  
that suggest a particular presentation; has this damaged anything?

>>>  and gage kind of makes me thing of dials and speedometers :D
> ...

That it has made different people on this list think of dials and  
speedometers, or "an indicator just like a progress bar", suggests that  
it does not imply any particular presentation. (Many modern fuel gauges  
don't appear as dials, for example.)

> ...
> I know what I'm talking about :D A gauge is an indicator just like a  
> progress bar. Why not just merge the two if at all possible.

Because that would lead to a situation where "developers were confusing  
people by using progress indicators to indicate non-progress fractions"

> ...
> A gauge and a statusbar are joined at the hip, if you want a
> progress-indictator gauge to have appropriate "alternate" text for
> accessability purposes. A statusbar by itself is just a gauge with
> undefined min/max numerical values, its purpose is a textual indicator
> of progress.

Not at all. Progress meters are often used outside of status bars, in  
situations where a status bar would be too feeble (for example, an  
upload or download utility that needs a large progress meter because  
the task is going to take hours so you may be keeping an eye on it from  
a distance) or too single (any application where multiple simultaneous  
but unrelated tasks are represented by multiple progress meters).

Matthew Thomas

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