ergo ponders

“Are scrollbars located close enough to where users typically work with a Website or list box to encourage […]

“Are scrollbars located close enough to where users typically work with a Website or list box to encourage the fastest possible use?” is the question du jour. Even though left hand navigation has settled into a web standard, people are asking if a right hand navigation might be better. Bob Baily says yes though Eric Schaffer says we’re stuck with it on the left, William Hudson doubts it, James Kalbach thinks right is right on, and iaslash is discussing.

It’s Eric’s comments that give me the most pause. Just because something is a convention doesn’t mean we should keep it. Some conventions are good, some are so deeply ingrained their is nothing we can do about it, and some can be overthrown. James’s work on Audi suggests the latter is possible in this case. Moreover Eric suggests making scrolless pages, a Sisyphean task, considering variations in browsers, and perhaps unwise, considering the alternative is clicking links though many short pages, often an undesirable alternative for users.


Add Yours
  1. 1

    Personally I am liking the local navigation on the right side. I redesigned my personal site recently to play with some ideas. One was placement of the navigation on the right, which quickly turned to global navigation on the top and local on the right.

    My reason for this initially was much of my work is on a laptop with a touch pad and having the local nav next to the scrollbar was a great help. I am finding I like having the content closer to the right side of the page is also helpful as the browser frames the text and not a few layers of visual elements providing a content frame. I use my site for myself to store ideas and access to information I want to come back to.

    How did the scroll bars get placed on the right side of the application windows anyway? It is somewhat helpful that the mouse pointers tilt to the left, so that when you are reading and scrolling with the mouse the pointer is out of the way.

Comments are closed.