Web navigation areas (was Re: STC Annual Conference trip reports?)

Subject: Web navigation areas (was Re: STC Annual Conference trip reports?)
From: "Dan Roberts" <droberts63 -at- earthlink -dot- net>
To: "Jane Credland" <jane -dot- credland -at- quintus -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 6 Jun 2000 06:27:48 -0400

Actually, one workshop presenter recommended using both the left and the right
side as navigation bars.
The basic ideas (as I remember) were:

* A site usually claims the top banner for branding/ID purposes (or for icky
banner-ad display) and often for moving between major areas of the site. One
example of top banner navigation is the gfn.com site.
* A site usually claims the left navigation area for moving between major areas
of the site (which could also be repeated by the top banner). One example of
left navigation is the MSNBC.com site. Or heck, even Outlook provides an example
of left navigation.
* Therefore, if you've got a big ol' long-scrolling mess o' text, chunk it, and
use the right-side navigation area to use for moving between chunks of the text.
Or you can use the right-side area to list sidebar articles.

Worked for me. Tho come to think of it, what do sites do to accomodate non-Euro
readers, who often don't scan in the Euro-standard left-right, top-bottom

-----Original Message-----
>> > One very interesting point they made was that studies
>> > show that, contrary to our visual instincts, it's
>> > actually better ergonomically to have clickable TOCs
>> > and links on the right side of the page rather than
>> > the left for easier mousing.
>> That *is* interesting. It makes sense, but did they say if they had done any
>> usability testing? I wonder if the left-side index is so ingrained that you
>> lose more than you gain by moving it to the right. Did they have any examples
>> sites that use it?
>I'm curious about usability testing as well. I'm also wondering whether
>this depends on whether the user was right or left handed, and which
>side the mouse is on. For example, if you're a left handed person, or
>you keep your mouse on the left side of your keyboard, then it seems to
>me that a left-side index would be more convenient and ergonomic.

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