Browse Prior Art Database

Transluscent Windows for Graphical-User Interfaces

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000112126D
Original Publication Date: 1994-Apr-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-26
Document File: 2 page(s) / 64K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Holzman, TG: AUTHOR

Abstract

Disclosed is a user interface design for "transluscent" windows that will allow users to locate and monitor overlaid windows and icons. When one object overlays another object (window or icon), the part of the underlying object that would be obscured in current interfaces "shows through" the top window, but with a low level of intensity.

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This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 52% of the total text.

Transluscent Windows for Graphical-User Interfaces

      Disclosed is a user interface design for "transluscent" windows
that will allow users to locate and monitor overlaid windows and
icons.  When one object overlays another object (window or icon), the
part of the underlying object that would be obscured in current
interfaces "shows through" the top window, but with a low level of
intensity.

      For example, if the user is working in a text editor window
that has a white background and if that window overlays a clock with
red hands and numerals, the clock will still be faintly visible
through the text editor window, but with light pink hands and
numerals.  This will allow the user to monitor the time even when the
underlying clock is overlaid.  If part of the clock is overlaid and
part is not, only the overlaid portion will be faintly depicted and
the remainder will be shown with its original coloration and
resolution.

      This invention is more consistent with the "windows" metaphor
used for graphical user interfaces than current implementations.
True windows allow light to come through, so some degree of viewing
through a computer window is consistent with this metaphor and with
the conceptual model that users have for the way windows work.

      If the user finds transluscence to be undesirable in certain
circumstances, a control will be provided in the user profile that
allows the user to toggle between transluscent and opaque window
characteristics.

      This interface design solves significant problems that exist in
current user interface windowing systems.  Such systems allow many
windows of information to be simultaneou...