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Usability: Support for form field input history ?

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verlsnake
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verlsnake asked on 08 Sep 2008, 03:37 PM

I have just noticed that many Ajax UIs seem NOT to support browser form field input history, that is: Values, which have been typed into a form field before, are NOT suggested later on ... This "input value suggest pattern" - e.g. based on former input values - is supported for plain old HTML forms in all browsers; and for a good reason: One just does not want to type in already typed in values - numbers, strings, dates, etc. - over and over again ...   
Is this usability deficit the price we have to pay for using JS client-side frameworks
like Telerik Ajax for ASP.NET AJAX ? Or can this important usability enhancement be activated somehow when developing Telerik based Ajax UIs ?

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Dimo
Telerik team
answered on 09 Sep 2008, 08:25 AM
Hello verlsnake,

The autocomplete functionality of form elements depends on two things:

1) a browser setting
2) the form elements' NAME attribute

If the NAME attribute is persisted for a given element and the browser's autocomplete is enabled, then it works.

For example, our RadInput controls (e.g. RadTextBox, RadDateInput) support the autocomplete functionality. In what other RadControls and scenarios are you interested in?


Regards,
Dimo
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verlsnake
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answered on 09 Sep 2008, 10:04 AM

Generally speaking: In all scenarios where it does make sense from an usability perspective.

One concrete example where I miss it in is Your RadGrid filtering example:
http://demos.telerik.com/aspnet/prometheus/Grid/Examples/GeneralFeatures/ASPNET35/DefaultCS.aspx

Though I imagine I have seen autocompletion of filtering values therein some days ago ...

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Dimo
Telerik team
answered on 09 Sep 2008, 12:52 PM
Hi verlsnake,

The browser remembers the filled in values in the form elements on the page when a regular postback occurs. From this points of view you are right - using Ajax is an obstacle for the autocomplete functionality.

The example that you have linked, uses an ajaxified RadGrid, that is why you don't see the browser's autocomplete suggestions - they are never remembered. Otherwise the filtering textboxes also support autocomplete, as all other textboxes in our controls.

Best wishes,
Dimo
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verlsnake
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answered on 09 Sep 2008, 01:22 PM

All I care about is the user experience I want to deliver ... So the question is: Can the Ajax property of being an obstacle for the autocomplete functionality be overcome somehow ?

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Dimo
Telerik team
answered on 09 Sep 2008, 01:58 PM
Hello,

I am afraid there is no easy way of achieving this, other than simply not using AJAX for the controls, which you want to benefit from autocomplete - use only regular postbacks.

Greetings,
Dimo
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verlsnake
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