I'm currently re-designing an application with the requirement that the
user be informed of their progress within a given process. All of the
individual processes save one are linear. Currently the linear
processes' progress is indicated in a "step x of x" manner (with the
non-linear showing no progress indicator).
Clearly, the stepped scheme will not work for a non-linear process as it
could be 5 steps or 10, depending on which decision path is taken, so
there could be no indication of how many steps fill follow step 1. My
fix for this right now is to change the progress indicator from a
stepped scheme to one of percentage. So, one could start at 0% complete,
then to perhaps 33%, then 75%, etc.
I know this is not a perfect solution but I reason that a change in
"percentage complete" is less traumatic than one in steps (i.e. going
from 33% done to 45% done vs. step 3 of 5 changing to step 4 of 10).
Does this sound like a reasonable idea or is there a more appropriate