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Pound Takes » UI
Ideas on Engineering Breakthrough Applications

Posts Tagged ‘UI’

Field Notes: Live Search/Auto complete

What is it?
In the last few years, a modification to search on many websites and applications has become popular. As the user begins to enter search criteria, a list of possible results is “suggested” just below the input field. Those suggestions can be clicked on or selected with the keyboard arrows without requiring the user to type out their full term. This method is a shortcut for long search terms such as “Attack of the Killer Tomatoes!” and is especially helpful when the user is unsure of the full spelling of a term such as “perseverance.”

While real time suggestions have been standard issue on desktop software, it is relatively novel and new on websites due to network constraints and the previous implementation difficulties (those difficulties have been resolved by libraries such as JQuery). The first time I remember seeing this method used was when Google set up Google Suggest in their labs - it’s since been released to the Google home page and is now prevalent on most search engines under various names such as Search Assist and Live Search. I’ve also heard auto-complete and dynamic search used to describe this technique.
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