Layer Tabs on a Tabbed Button

Judy Perry katheryn.swynford at
Sat Nov 15 12:51:37 EST 2008


If you ever find the reference to the study, I'd be interested in it.

I seem to recall a particularly ghastly set of magically reorganizing
multi-rowed tab controls at the User Interface Hall of Shame.


On Fri, Nov 14, 2008 at 9:02 PM, Richard Gaskin
<ambassador at> wrote:
> Marcus wrote:
>> Is there anyway to create a layered effect on a tabbed button, so that you
>> can
>> have two or even three rows of tabs all on the same button?
> I understand that multi-row tabs are a common convention, but they're
> not supported on other OSes for several reasons.
> First, they break their own metaphor when a user selects a tab in any
> but the lower-most row, since the row needs to shift to the front and
> thus departs from the real-world metaphor of a physical object which
> remains in one place when selected.
> Also, the moving of the rows often confuses the user; tests show few can
> predict exactly what will happen when the rows need to shift (I can't find
> the paper I'd read that in, but maybe one of the others here know the URL).
> OS X explicitly forbids the use of multi-row tabs, and the Gnome HIG offers
> the suggestion to consider using a vertical list when you need a selector
> that has more options than can fit in a single tab row:
> <>
> The nice thing about Calum Benson's suggestion is that it's simple to make
> in Rev. :)
> --
>  Richard Gaskin
>  Managing Editor, revJournal
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