Inappropriate mouse behavior...

Robert Brenstein rjb at
Mon Nov 18 18:12:00 EST 2002

>A user might press down on button1, realise that they intended to 
>actually press button 2, and without letting go off the mouse, move 
>over to the appropriate button and let go there. This is, INDEED, 
>coherent with Apple's interface guidelines and their principle of 
>'forgiveness'. Menus behave that way, and several multimedia-style 
>applications that I've come across DO have buttons that behave this 
>way, indeed. Think about it, and you will see that it makes sense.

I don't know where you found this in Apple's HIGs. Open a print, 
configuration, or any other standard dialog in Finder or normal Mac 
application. If you click on a button (standard button or radio for 
example) and move the button away, the button's hilite will go away 
but I haven't seen that moving mouse (while continuing to hold the 
button down) will activate another button. That would be a dangerous 
behavior. Mouse down means selection. Mouse up means finalize that 
selection and possibly invoke the associated action. If mouse up 
occurs outside the area of the selected object, it means that user 
changed his/her mind and wants to avoid the consequences. Behavior of 
menus is not parallel to this -- holding the mouse enters menu browse 
mode, hence one can move from menu to menu and see the options. The 
difference is that without the pull action one does not see the 
content of the menu.


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