Links in same window?

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Inkyskin
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Links in same window?

Post by Inkyskin »

I havent used phpbb3 before, but I have already noticed that links don't open in a new window anymore - is that a control panel setting, or should I just use open in new tab with firefox from now on?
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JayBird
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by JayBird »

Inkyskin wrote:I havent used phpbb3 before, but I have already noticed that links don't open in a new window anymore - is that a control panel setting, or should I just use open in new tab with firefox from now on?
Yeah, i noticed that.

Its something i am looking to fix.
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Jonah Bron
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Jonah Bron »

Yeah, me too. (no, I mean I noticed it) :)

Ha. Your avatar never actually registered with my brain before, JayBird! :lol:
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RobertGonzalez
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by RobertGonzalez »

Is opening a new window something we should have the board code do or should we leave it up to the user to open a new window on links?
matthijs
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by matthijs »

Normally I would say leave it up to the user. I always have that discussion with clients ("we don't want them to leave our site").

But for this forum it was ok that links opened in new windows. As I have Devnet open in my second tab in Firefox, opening links opens them in new tabs automatically. But I guess everyone is able to set his own preferences.
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Benjamin
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Benjamin »

I prefer it to open in a new window. If someone posts something for us to look at I like to open it and then close it and reply to the post without having to worry about whether the site is going to break the back button or not.
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Chris Corbyn
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Chris Corbyn »

I'm quite used to using Option-Click but I'm easy if the majority want to see links in a new window by default.
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RobertGonzalez
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by RobertGonzalez »

I am of the mind that if a user wants a new window let the user choose. It is not the place of the site to tell the user they have to open a new window. Just about all of us can right-click/ctrl click and open a link in a new tab.
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Benjamin
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Benjamin »

Everah wrote:I am of the mind that if a user wants a new window let the user choose. It is not the place of the site to tell the user they have to open a new window. Just about all of us can right-click/ctrl click and open a link in a new tab.
I don't buy the "let the user decide" argument. It's easy for computer minded people to say, but seriously, a large majority of computer users don't know that they can right click in IE or click the center wheel in Firefox to open a link in a new window. Granted the demographics here are a bit different than the Internet in general, I could get used to center clicking.

As for "it's not the place of the site" I have to disagree as well. I'm of the attitude that it's my site, take it or leave it. But attitude aside, taking into consideration my comment regarding a majority of users not knowing how to open links in new windows, I would say it's good practice to help "guide" the users behavior. IE if you know a user is going to open a window for more product details or reviews for the purpose of making a buying decision, why not open it in a new window so when they close it they end up back where they want to be? If you opened it in the same window and they close it, they may lose track of the site they were on and you could use a sale.
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feyd
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by feyd »

Standards compliance would dictate no new window for links.
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Kieran Huggins
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Kieran Huggins »

Everah wrote:I am of the mind that if a user wants a new window let the user choose. It is not the place of the site to tell the user they have to open a new window. Just about all of us can right-click/ctrl click and open a link in a new tab.
Point.
feyd wrote:Standards compliance would dictate no new window for links.
Set.
Kieran Huggins wrote:I do like me a good sandwich. Also, links should have no inherent target unless part of a frameset. And framesets suck. Big time.
...aaaaaaaaand match.
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Benjamin
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Benjamin »

I think I'm out-voted here.
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Bill H
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Bill H »

I am aware that it is not standards compliant, but I make links to open in a new window. Reason: as has already been mentioned, too many other sites break the "back" button and I don't want to create issues with users getting back to "my" site. (Usually not mine, but people for whom I am making site pages.) When other web creators quit breaking the back button I will become standards compliant and make links to open in the same window.

It would also be my preference in the forum here to have links open in a new window. Even though I could do it myself and even though it's not standards compliant. It is, however not a major issue for me.
matthijs
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by matthijs »

On number 9 in the Top Ten Mistakes in Web Design by Jacob Nielsen:
Opening New Browser Windows
Designers open new browser windows on the theory that it keeps users on their site. But even disregarding the user-hostile message implied in taking over the user's machine, the strategy is self-defeating since it disables the Back button which is the normal way users return to previous sites. Users often don't notice that a new window has opened, especially if they are using a small monitor where the windows are maximized to fill up the screen. So a user who tries to return to the origin will be confused by a grayed out Back button.
Of course, there are cases when opening new windows do make sense and are usable. A small popup with some help information comes to mind. And in the case of this forum: probably many people would like links to be opened in a new window/tab. But it should be the decision of the user. Either by changing some setting in the personal settings of the forum or in the preferences of the browser he/she uses.

As to the disabling of the back button: I remember having seen that problem less then a handful of times in the last 10 years or so. The last time probably a couple of years ago. Not sure how often it is still done. It is certainly one of the most stupid and offensive things to do as a website owner.
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Benjamin
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Re: Links in same window?

Post by Benjamin »

I have to agree with a lot of things Jacob says, but not that. I would go so far as to say that web developers have a "responsibility" to open links in new windows when it's best for the situation. There is a huge gap between what developers know and how end users use computers. Just look at what happened to Vista. In that quote Jacob is using some strong and subjective words/phrases such as "hostile", "taking over" and "self defeating". I call BS on that one.

I have personally observed more people click on a link that didn't open in a new window, view the page, close the browser and then wonder where the previous page went because they "thought" the page opened in a new window. Boom lost sale. Boom inconvenienced site user, Boom lost traffic. If they are "really truly interested" and the amount of effort they have to spend to "find" your site again is worth their perceived value of the product/information/data on the page, you may get them back.

I think all this animosity towards links opening in new windows is just a branch off the annoying and endless unsolicited pop-up window era tree. There are much more important things to worry about. How about getting all the browsers to render html the same?
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