How do people know they can drag and drop a drag and drop control?

Hi,
My question is one of design and usage.  I created a drag an droppable "page menu" for a small number of items that change dynamically depending on the page a user is on.  My question is, how do I communicate that this control can be moved around on the page?  Do others depend on their users discovering this on their own?  I considered putting it in the title - ie "Page Menu (drag and drop)" but co-workers didn't care for that approach much more than I did.  I considered  hover-over text, but I'm not sure how to do that.  Any ideas?  Also, I'm curious how others are using the drag and drop control and I would love to see your websites that employ them.
Thanks!
Jenny

0
sbdietforme
7/31/2007 11:54:15 AM
asp.net.ajax-discussion 13973 articles. 1 followers. Follow

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Hi Jenny,
I have used some drag n drop funcionality and have asked myself the same questions as you. Since drag n drop isn't a behaviour that webusers are used to (yet) we have to somehow comunicate to them that this is possible. For some parts of my application i have a draggable popup where the drag n drop functionality is only a bonus feature and not nessecary to complete the task at hand. With this panel i have only visualized that it's draggable by using css to change the users cursor when it enters the panels header (I use the move cursor).

In an other application the drag n drop is part of the actual functionality (the user can drag from a gridview to a treeview to ad a node). But here I found that users don't get this so what i ended up doing is two ways of doing the same thing. First (and fastes) you can drag from the grid to the treeview and the other way is a more tradionaly click a button to add. When users are doing it the tradional way they get a tip like "You can also do this by draging...". That way when the users get more experienced they learn a faster way to do it.

Unfortunatly none of these can be view or used by public since they are internal applications of a client.

Hoover text might also be good and probably the easiest way to acomplish that is either if you have a control in the header to set it's tooltip to "Drag me" or just use a <span title="Drag me please!">Some header text</span> . There are also javascript that you can find on the web that let's you customize popup and hoover messages. I've been thinking about useing subtle animations to get the users atention to the draghandle or dragable part, like pulse or colorfade.

It's an interesting webusage and interaction problem!
Best regards
Per


If my answer was useful then please mark as answer. Thank you.
0
Peronn
8/1/2007 9:38:24 AM

In the drag-drop header, can you put the text - "Drag me"?


MCPD - Web Developer
0
bebandit
8/3/2007 8:23:38 PM
Reply:

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