Re: An error in browser design

From: Jacques Du Pasquier (
Date: Mon Feb 11 2002 - 04:29:24 MST wrote (10.2.2002/10:10) :
> Jacques writes:
> > You read a web page. When you have finished reading a screenful, you
> > hit "PageDown", and then resume reading at the top of the screen.
> >
> > But now you come to the penultimate screen and you hit "PageDown".
> > Unless the remainder of the page is exactly one screen long, the top
> > of the screen now shows text you have already read, and you have to scan
> > the text to find where you were were reading before to hit "PageDown".
> That's a good point, Jacques. I have the same problem when I use the
> "more" or "less" programs on my Unix system to read mail or text files.
> They go down a page at a time until the last page, and you're right, I
> often waste several seconds trying to figure out where I was just reading.
> Sometimes there are only a few lines of new material and it takes quite
> a while before I figure that out. You'd think that upon reading the
> first lines of the new page that I would immediately recognize how far
> back in the text this was, but that's not true.
> I can understand the reluctance of the designers to display a bunch of
> blank lines at the end of the document when they don't really exist.

They do that already when the whole page fits in less than a screen.
I think it would be natural to do the same here.

> Maybe some other UI cue should be used, like a transient vertical bar
> along one side, or some text shading, to distinguish the material you
> have seen before from new text.

That would be a possibility, but perhaps a bit complicated. I think
that reading the last screenful should not be any different than
reading the previous ones.


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