Sorting buttons... left-to-right, top-to-bottom

31 Jan 2010 - 8:51am
4 years ago
7 replies
944 reads
seifip
2009

IMHO it's more about the spacing between the buttons than about the
arrangement. I would probably prefer the left-to-right version, but
in both cases you should have more space between the columns or rows
depending on which arrangement you choose.

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Comments

31 Jan 2010 - 9:26am
Yulius
2009

I find that this is really depending on the target audience
demographic or culture. But generally I prefer #2 because as you've
mentioned that these are list of items, which people will normally
see it in vertical order.

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31 Jan 2010 - 11:11am
Ania Powers
2010

It will depend on personal preferences, for example if part of your
target is used to another interface where one of these orders is
used, they may expect this one to be similar.

If the list will be actual text (justified to the left), people will
most likely choose the vertical order.

If you want them to follow specific order when items are the same
size, arrange it the way whic suggests it:
http://fudyma.com/tmp/abc1.png
vs
http://fudyma.com/tmp/abc2.png

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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31 Jan 2010 - 11:13am
tonyzeoli
2008

At first glance, kind of hard for me to give an opinion without knowing what
content would live in the tabs and buttons. What content is the user being
asked to click on and why?

On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 8:26 AM, joe <joekannooks at hotmail.com> wrote:

> Thought I'd get a few good opinions here on the matter...
>
> Which would you consider more effective for a user? I thought there
> was a natural choice, but it seems I've received differing thoughts,
> so I figured I'd put it out to the group.
>
>
> http://i906.photobucket.com/albums/ac262/joekphoto/buttons/left-to-right.jpg
>
> vs.
>
>
> http://i906.photobucket.com/albums/ac262/joekphoto/buttons/top-to-bottom.jpg
>
> My thought was to go with #2 as these are *lists* of items, but
> proponents of #1 seem to go with 'users read left-to-right'.
>
> What do you think?
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
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> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=48856
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PR: wait... <javascript:{}> I: wait... <javascript:{}> L:
wait...<javascript:{}> LD:
wait... <javascript:{}> I: wait... <javascript:{}>wait... <javascript:{}> Rank:
wait... <javascript:{}> Traffic: wait... <javascript:{}> Price:
wait...<javascript:{}> C:
wait... <javascript:{}>

31 Jan 2010 - 12:13pm
uladzimir.palkh...
2010

It depends on culture and region, however horizontal arrangement is
more natural.

There are also several alternative views. Why don't you want to:
1) Copy from QWERTY keyboard? Many users are experienced with it.
2) Copy from mobile phone keyboard ? The same as with QWERTY
keyboard, but the list of already experienced users is larger.

In general your solution should depend on who are your users what
kind of soft is that. But having something new without clear
argumentation is risky.
Good luck!

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31 Jan 2010 - 1:46pm
Anonymous

Thanks for the responses.

Sorry for any confusion, I just used placeholder text. I'll try to
clarify a bit. It's for a touch-screen kiosk. The buttons in this
case will be employers or names of companies, sorted alphabetically
across multiple pages using tabs. Users will of course have to select
their employer.

As a point of context, most _menus_ in the application have the
buttons arranged in a vertical format.

Agreed that spacing can contribute to the 'feel' of the layout...
whether it's more natural to be vertical or horizontal.
Configuration as well I think: if the buttons are arranged 10 x 3,
I'd say left-to-right; if they are arranged 3 x 10, top-to-bottom.

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Posted from the new ixda.org
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1 Feb 2010 - 7:11am
Javier Gala
2010

I was thinking the "left-to-right" would feel more natural,
specially if there is any scroll involved (it would be quite
uncomfortable having to scroll visually from top to bottom and then
again if you did not found what you looked for)... but I was thinking
about looking for "visual labels".

But then, if you are going to use just text it is much more simple to
scan directly downwards looking for the 1st different letters of the
label.

Another point would be that you should clearly mark the boundaries
between letters, both in the tabs and in the proper context.

Hope this helps.

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1 Feb 2010 - 8:42am
whitneyq
2010

However you do it you want to make sure that it either visually looks
like rows or columns (and overstate the cue, for people with low
vision).

And, you must make sure that the reading order is reflected in the
underlying technical structures for screen readers.

On Fri, Jan 29, 2010 at 8:26 AM, joe <joekannooks at hotmail.com> wrote:
> Thought I'd get a few good opinions here on the matter...
>
> Which would you consider more effective for a user? I thought there
> was a natural choice, but it seems I've received differing thoughts,
> so I figured I'd put it out to the group.
>
> http://i906.photobucket.com/albums/ac262/joekphoto/buttons/left-to-right.jpg
>
> vs.
>
> http://i906.photobucket.com/albums/ac262/joekphoto/buttons/top-to-bottom.jpg
>
> My thought was to go with #2 as these are *lists* of items, but
> proponents of #1 seem to go with 'users read left-to-right'.
>
> What do you think?
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Whitney Quesenbery
www.wqusability.com

Storytelling for User Experience Design
www.rosenfeldmedia.com/books/storytelling

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