menu buttons and showname

Scott Rossi scott at
Thu Jul 2 12:58:21 EDT 2015

Often, this type of control has a call to action such as "Choose an item",
as opposed an indication "No selection".  It depends on the context of
your control.  If a selection is required in your set up, the call to
action is more communicative. Otherwise, if "No selection" is a valid
selection then that type of message should work.


Scott Rossi
Creative Director
Tactile Media, UX/UI Design

On 7/2/15, 8:47 AM, "Peter Haworth" <pete at> wrote:

>Good point. For lots of reasons, the names of my option menus aren't
>suitable for display to a user. Maybe the cleanest thing to do then is, if
>the text of the menu is empty, set its label as suggested by Richard. I
>like that. Most of the menus in question are under the control of a
>behavior so this is easy to implement.
>On Thu, Jul 2, 2015, 8:28 AM Richard Gaskin <ambassador at>
>> Peter Haworth wrote:
>> > So my technique of setting showname to false if the text is empty is
>> > only way round this?
>> >
>> > Also, you can have a label for an option menu with empty text. Try
>> setting
>> > the text of an option menu to empty, then use the message box to set
>> > label to some value.
>> With the OS X HIGs not nearly as complete as they used to be I can no
>> longer find the relevant section on this, but I believe most HIGs
>> suggest that we avoid giving the user the impression the control may be
>> broken by replacing empty items with some explanation of why it's empty,
>> or perhaps a disabled item simply saying "None".
>> --
>>   Richard Gaskin
>>   Fourth World Systems
>>   Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
>>   ____________________________________________________________________
>>   Ambassador at      
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