Enhanced Implementation of Keyboard Scrolling in Presentation Manager Dialogs
Original Publication Date: 1995-Feb-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-30
Johnson, DK: AUTHOR [+2]
Disclosed are a combination of usability enhancements that make it much easier for the user to scroll a dialog using the keyboard, providing a more intuitive feedback notification to the user that the dialog is in scroll mode, providing a unique mouse pointer while in scroll mode when the mouse is over the scrolling dialog, and allowing the user to quickly and easily exit scroll mode.
Enhanced Implementation of Keyboard Scrolling in
a combination of usability enhancements that make
it much easier for the user to scroll a dialog using the keyboard,
providing a more intuitive feedback notification to the user that the
dialog is in scroll mode, providing a unique mouse pointer while in
scroll mode when the mouse is over the scrolling dialog, and allowing
the user to quickly and easily exit scroll mode.
Presentation Manager* (PM) of OS/2* was first
implemented, dialog windows were not designed to be sizable. Dialogs
are windows that contain groups of controls such as entry fields,
list boxes, radiobuttons, check boxes, pushbuttons and combo boxes.
Under the current guidelines of the Common User Access* (CUA)
standards, however, all dialogs should be sizable and scrollable.
scrollability needs to be available via both the mouse and
the keyboard. While mouse scrolling is easy for the user to use,
keyboard scrolling is much more cumbersome. Since the scrolling keys
(up arrow, down arrow, left arrow, right arrow, page up, page down)
are often used by the individual control that has the focus when the
scrolling keys are pressed, the dialog needs to be in a special
scroll mode for the scrolling keys to scroll the dialog itself rather
than interact with the individual control.
implementation of scrollable dialogs requires that
the user toggle the dialog into and out of scroll mode by clicking on
a menu item on the system menu. The Windowed Command Prompt window,
though not a dialog window, provides an example using this technique.
When the menu item has been selected and the window is in scroll
mode, the title of the window changes to reflect this, but there is
no other visual evidence that the window is in a unique state. Once
any desired scrolling is finished, the user has to once again go to
the system menu and click on the scroll menu item to toggle the
window back out of scroll mode.
A better solution
to toggling into and out scroll mode via a
system menu item would be to make use of the keyboard's ScrollLock
key. This key is designed to be used with older applications, but is
perfectly suited for implementing the toggling of the keyboard
scrolling state in PM dialogs.
application can establish an application input hook which
intercepts all keystrokes before that keystroke can be processed by
whatever window has the input focus. This input hook can examine
each keystroke to see if it is a toggle of the ScrollLock key. If it
is, the input hook can send a message to the dialog that triggers the
dialog to toggle its scroll mode state correspondingly. Toggling the
scroll mode of the dialog with the ScrollLock key is much more
intuitive than using a menu item on the system menu. It also
requires just a single keys...