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Re: [platform-ui-dev] Question about links on an editor page

Links are also more appropriate for actions that are more like navigation, such as showing another view with further details, or going to some other UI context.
Also when you want to provide more wording than would look good in a button, but this should usually be reserved for secondary, or low-impact actions.

The guidelines for links and command buttons here describe the trade-offs well:

See also this recent post by Nielsen, which is very much in line with the above.  He also talks about command links (a picture of which you can see in the link above, but guidelines for which aren't up yet):

For a good example of button vs. link use in a web-app, check out how Gmail uses them on its main page.


“To jazz, or not to jazz, there is no question!” - Louis Armstrong

Dejan Glozic/Toronto/IBM@IBMCA
Sent by: platform-ui-dev-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxx

05/18/2007 10:08 AM

Please respond to
"Eclipse Platform UI component developers list."        <platform-ui-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx>

David Whiteman <dlwhiteman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Eclipse Platform UI component developers list." <platform-ui-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx>
platform-ui-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx, platform-ui-dev-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxx
Re: [platform-ui-dev] Question about links on an editor page


Buttons are heavy in appearance and are appropriate for primary actions -
actions that are the key of the visual artifact they appear in. It is
appropriate to use links for secondary actions and those that will  not
produce irrevocable state changes. In your example, if validating the file
is not the primary purpose of your editor, a link would do because it is
less heavy.

I am making this comment as the owner of the UI Forms. It is possible that
the UI team may have different opinions when it comes to the overall
Eclipse UI recommendation.


Dejan Glozic, Ph.D.
Manager, Eclipse Development 1A
IBM Canada Ltd.
Tel. 905 413-2745  T/L 969-2745
Fax. 905 413-4850

            David Whiteman                                                
  >                                                To
            Sent by:                  platform-ui-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx        
            platform-ui-dev-b                                          cc
            g                                                     Subject
                                      [platform-ui-dev] Question about    
                                      links on an editor page            
            05/18/2007 09:34                                              
            Please respond to                                            
             David Whiteman                                              
            Please respond to                                            
            "Eclipse Platform                                            
              UI component                                                
            developers list."                                            


I am posting here as it was suggested to do so on .

I have a multi-page editor for my component.  On the first
tab of the editor, there is a link to run a validator on the
file being edited.  Is using a link appropriate, or would a
button be better?  Our human factors people say a button is
better, but I see links being used to launch actions in the
plugin editors, etc.  I don't see anything on this topic in
the Eclipse User Interface Guidelines.

Thanks in advance,
David Whiteman

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