Sunday, December 17, 2006

Design Stories: Character counters

More on the use of instructive text ...

"Continuing the Design Stories series, here’s a look at the design of character counters (the little text messages used to indicate how many characters can be entered into a text field).

Many sites skimp on the grace that character counters can offer and use something that takes the least amount of work to build, but can be quite frustrating for users. For example, an input field with a set character limit should communicate that limit to users, but many sites leave this important element out. When this happens, you often end up with the ability to enter anything you like, even though the entire string cannot be stored.

... In these cases, users are informed of their mistake via an error message.

This method blames the user, essentially telling him that he should have known before pressing the Submit button that he couldn’t enter more than 50 characters. This is no good."    (Continued via rhjr.net)    [Usability Resources]

Instructive Text Warning - Usability, User Interface Design

Instructive Text Warning

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