Friday, January 05, 2007

The Pros and Cons of Pie

Using pie menus in your user interface design ...

"If you've just celebrated the holidays, I'm sure you're well aware of the pros and cons of pie. But here we're talking about pie menus and mouse gestures and what's good and bad.

... the other day in some article about the *next* version of Windows that may (or may not) include pie menus... the author discussed the Firefox extension in the absence of any Windows based examples. So that got me explaining the difference between mouse gestures and pie menus, and I thought a little bit about what I like and dislike about them that I thought I'd share.

Pie menus are great in my opinion. At least, much greater than what we have for menus and toolbars. They take the mouse travel out of the equation and change it into mouse direction. So you're not constantly moving all the way over to the back button, then back to page content... (I'm already tired!). In addition, they take a context sensitive approach. What your mouse is hovering over at the time you bring up a pie menu determines what kind of menu you get. The latest version of Office includes the context sensitive part in the "the Ribbon."

All this is of course very familiar to Opera users, or any mouse gesture fan. The big difference between the two is that you don't get to see what's going on with mouse gestures. You'll get feedback only after the command has been executed, and hopefully it will match what you intended it to do."    (Continued via User Centered)    [Usability Resources]

Pie Menu in Office 2007 - Usability, User Interface Design

Pie Menu in Office 2007


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