locating tabs at the bottom of an application window

31 May 2006 - 2:19am
8 years ago
3 replies
645 reads
מיכל הכה
2006

Hi all,

I'm in the process of designing an intranet portal that allows access to 8 content sections.

Each section has its own layout, once the users logged into the portal they should be able to shift between sections without having to leave or close whatever they were doing in another section.

In order to allow this functionality I decided to use tabs for each new task and locate them at the bottom of the window (much like minimized applications in the windows taskbar).

Is there a reason not to do so?

More important, I’m a looking for information (research, articles and personal knowledge) regarding the functionality of tabs that are located at bottom of the window.

Regards,
Michal

Comments

31 May 2006 - 10:42am
Josh Seiden
2003

The major issue here is that it limits your page length. You can't use
web-page style scolling/infinitely long pages.

This may or may not be a problem, but it is a constraint.

JS

> I'm in the process of designing an intranet portal that
> allows access to 8 content sections.
>
> Each section has its own layout, once the users logged into
> the portal they should be able to shift between sections
> without having to leave or close whatever they were doing in
> another section.
>
> In order to allow this functionality I decided to use tabs
> for each new task and locate them at the bottom of the window
> (much like minimized applications in the windows taskbar).
>
>
>
> Is there a reason not to do so?

1 Jun 2006 - 5:48pm
dmitryn
2004

I am not sure page length is really a problem - it is possible to use
frames (or CSS pseudo-frames) to avoid this issue. I do see a couple
of other issues with this approach, though:

1) It breaks user expectations of where informational site navigation
is usually located (i.e. in the top banner or left sidebar). See for
example Figure 3 in this article:

http://psychology.wichita.edu/surl/usabilitynews/81/webobjects.htm

2) Depending on which portal/CMS platform you are using, it may be
difficult or completely impossible to locate navigation elements at
the bottom. Of course, this may not apply if you are rolling your own
platform.

Dmitry

On 5/31/06, Joshua Seiden <joshseiden at yahoo.com> wrote:
> [Please voluntarily trim replies to include only relevant quoted material.]
>
> The major issue here is that it limits your page length. You can't use
> web-page style scolling/infinitely long pages.
>
> This may or may not be a problem, but it is a constraint.
>
> JS
>
> > I'm in the process of designing an intranet portal that
> > allows access to 8 content sections.
> >
> > Each section has its own layout, once the users logged into
> > the portal they should be able to shift between sections
> > without having to leave or close whatever they were doing in
> > another section.
> >
> > In order to allow this functionality I decided to use tabs
> > for each new task and locate them at the bottom of the window
> > (much like minimized applications in the windows taskbar).
> >
> >
> >
> > Is there a reason not to do so?
>
>
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2 Jun 2006 - 10:40am
ldebett
2004

I just want to comment on the "user expectations" and note that this can be
a very western/US-centric view (the research is from a Kansas-based
university and the participants were college students). Culturally, in the
US we are top-down, left-right reading. Other cultures do not have this
method and expect things differently. I'm guessing Michal is in Israel, but
I could be wrong, where there are different cultural norms.

If you're designing for a culturally homogenous audience, you may want to
approach your design for that culture and use those cultural norms. If
you're designing for a more international audience, you'll need to take
other cultural norms into consideration.

Technically, it is clear there are other issues in having bottom-dwelling
tabs.

~Lisa

On 6/1/06, Dmitry Nekrasovski <mail.dmitry at gmail.com> wrote:
>
>
> 1) It breaks user expectations of where informational site navigation
> is usually located (i.e. in the top banner or left sidebar). See for
> example Figure 3 in this article:
>
> http://psychology.wichita.edu/surl/usabilitynews/81/webobjects.htm
>
>

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