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Apache OpenOffice 4.1.3 released

Guidelines for Specifying Alerts

Owner:
Christian Jansen
Last Change:
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Goal of this document
These guidelines shall help specification authors specifying Alerts.
Intended readership
Specification authors, specification reviewers (Development , Quality Assurance , User Experience, Documentation)
Feedback:
dev@specs.openoffice.org

Alerts (this incudes Warnings, Error Messages, Questions) are modal dialogs which contain the have to contain the following Elements:

An alert has to:

Usage of Icons

Each Alert has to provide an icon. The icon gives information about the type of alert and its severity level of the alert.

Icon

Severity


Question

Use this icon for alerts that ask a question. Use question as in normal flow of operation.

Information

Use this icon for alerts that provide an information. Use this in normal flow of operation.

Warning

Display this icon to notify that an unusual error occurred

Critical

Display this icon to notify that an critical error occurred

Example:

The examples below shall give an idea of a warning which got improved from a poorly written alert to a good one:

Icon

Alert Text

OK?

Error saving the document ABC:
General Error.
General Input/Output error

No
Too technical. Language used is for Programmers but not for users. Wrong type of icon has been selected.

The document ABC could not be saved, because it is read-only.

No
Got improved, but provides no hint to get the problem solved.
Wrong type of icon has been selected; severity much too high.

The document ABC could not be saved, because it is read-only.

Try to remove the read-only property, or select “Save As...” from the “File” menu.

Yes
The text is well formulated, gives users a hint how to get this problem fixed. The severity, indicated by the icon, is correct.

Document History:

Revision

Change

Initials

Date

1

First draft created

CJ

July 23, 2005

2

Updated after inspection of p3386 team

CJ

October 5, 2005

3

Revised for OpenOffice.org usage

CJ

December 22, 2005

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