Another web challenge: Back button

Richard Gaskin ambassador at
Fri Sep 23 14:50:31 EDT 2011

After thinking about the challenges of translating LC stacks into web 
pages, I remembered another issues I've had to deal with in browsers 
that we don't have to think about in LC:

How do your app respond when the user clicks the browser's Back button?

We have no universal "Back" message in LC; any navigation in our stacks 
is entirely provided by and handled by our own code.

But users expect a meaningful response when they click their Back button 
- what will your app do?

Should it always just bail out of the page entirely?

In HTML, after you've click an in-page link, Back takes you back to the 
last scroll position within the page where the link was present.  So 
should it handle a scroll reversal?  Should that be a default behavior, 
and what means should be provided to override it?

It's not unrealistic (and indeed a specific request from a client) that 
we design the web version of our LC-based app to revert back to a 
previously-displayed content section (we hide and show a lot of divs, 
generated from LC fields).

What will your app do?

If you hand-code that behavior, it will do whatever you like.

But if you expect a meaningful response from an automated translator, 
your users will likely be disappointed.

This is some sticky stuff once you get into it....

  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World
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