RE: Tree View Terminology

Subject: RE: Tree View Terminology
From: "Korth, Deanna" <deanna -dot- korth -at- dmpinc -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 2003 15:12:21 -0600

Gerry Loiacono wrote, "IMHO, 'tree view' may be coming out of vogue
(especially since the metaphor was not very strong to begin with - you
cannot collapse and expand an elm or an oak)."

I agree; however, Gerry then went on to state that he liked the terms
"folders," "sub-folders," and "items within folders."

Nice, but in our software, the hierarchy in the left pane does not have
folder icons. Instead, it has icons that loosely represent the data
contained in each node of the tree (for lack of a better word--still). For
example, the icon that represents the Customer level is a mailbox.

So far we (our Documentation Department) have decided that we can call the
left pane the "navigation pane," but we're still stumped as to what we
should call the structure within the left pane. Suggestions so far include:

Hierarchal tree
Navigation tree
Directory tree

Also, what does everyone call the information that appears in the right pane
as a result of clicking a node (level? folder?) in the left pane? If you
click "Widget" in the navigation pane, then the information associated with
the Widget appears in the right pane. Is that information the Widget screen?
Is the right pane a "screen?"

Anita Legsdin wrote, "Then it seems to follow that if the unnamed region of
the window is too complex to point to easily, the window itself is poorly

The interface is definitely poorly designed, and it is scheduled for an
overhaul, but until the interface changes, we have to document it the way it


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