Breadcrumb navigation

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GNOME Files, demonstrating its implementation of location-based breadcrumb navigation in the "var", "run" and "cups" folder buttons. Breadcrumb navigation in Nautilus.png
GNOME Files, demonstrating its implementation of location-based breadcrumb navigation in the "var", "run" and "cups" folder buttons.

A breadcrumb or breadcrumb trail is a graphical control element frequently used as a navigational aid in user interfaces and on web pages. It allows users to keep track and maintain awareness of their locations within programs, documents, or websites.

Contents

The term is a reference to the trail of bread crumbs left by Hansel and Gretel in the German fairy tale of the same name. [1]

Usage

A breadcrumb trail tracks and displays each page viewed by a visitor of a website, either in the order the pages were viewed, [2] or in other definitions, displaying a hierarchy of the current page in relation to the website's structure. [3] Breadcrumbs are typically placed in horizontal form under the masthead or navigation of a website. [4]

They may be implemented with each part of the trail having a drop-down menu of its own, as well as drag and drop support, as done in Windows Explorer.

Websites

Breadcrumbs typically appear horizontally across the top of a Web page, often below title bars or headers. They provide links back to each previous page the user navigated through to get to the current page or—in hierarchical site structures—the parent pages of the current one. Breadcrumbs provide a trail for the user to follow back to the starting or entry point. [1] A greater-than sign (>) often serves as hierarchy separator, although designers may use other glyphs (such as » or ›), as well as various graphical icons.

A breadcrumb trail or path based on viewing history is typically rendered as follows :

Page viewed > Page viewed > Page viewed > Page viewed > Page currently being viewed

For instance, in this scenario, a website visitor views seven pages (note how the pages are tracked in order the user viewed them) :

Home page > Services > About Us > Home page > Latest Newsletter > Home page > Page currently being viewed

Typical breadcrumbs following a hierarchical structure are shown as follows:

Home page > Section page > Subsection page

Software

Current file managers including Linux Mint's Nemo, Windows Explorer (from Windows Vista onwards), Finder (for Macintosh operating systems), GNOME's Nautilus, KDE's Dolphin, Xfce's Thunar, MATE's Caja, and SnowBird allow breadcrumb navigation, often replacing or extending an address bar.[ citation needed ]

Types

There are three types of Web breadcrumbs:

[5] [6]

Usability

Location breadcrumbs are not necessarily appropriate for sites whose content is so rich that single categories do not fully describe a particular piece of content. For this reason, a tag may be more appropriate, though breadcrumbs can still be used to allow the user to retrace their steps and see how they arrived at the current page.

Other names

Some commentators and programmers alternatively use the term "cookie crumb" as a synonym to describe the navigation design.
This should not be confused with the term cookie, which refers to HTTP cookies (text files websites write on a visitor's machine that record data such as login information).

Michigan Community College's Virtual Learning Collaborative uses the term "Navigation Path", [7] as do some Drupal users. [8]

French and Spanish speakers sometimes use instead the term Ariadne's thread (in French fil d'Ariane) in relation to the thread left by Ariadne to Theseus so he can find the exit of the labyrinth after killing the Minotaur, on a LIFO (stack) instead of FIFO (queue) way.[ citation needed ]

Related Research Articles

A file manager or file browser is a computer program that provides a user interface to manage files and folders. The most common operations performed on files or groups of files include creating, opening, renaming, copying, moving, deleting and searching for files, as well as modifying file attributes, properties and file permissions. Folders and files may be displayed in a hierarchical tree based on their directory structure.

Graphical user interface User interface allowing interaction through graphical icons and visual indicators

The graphical user interface is a form of user interface that allows users to interact with electronic devices through graphical icons and audio indicator such as primary notation, instead of text-based user interfaces, typed command labels or text navigation. GUIs were introduced in reaction to the perceived steep learning curve of command-line interfaces (CLIs), which require commands to be typed on a computer keyboard.

Konqueror Web browser

Konqueror is a free and open-source web browser and file manager that provides web access and file-viewer functionality for file systems. It forms a core part of the KDE Software Compilation. Developed by volunteers, Konqueror can run on most Unix-like operating systems. The KDE community licenses and distributes Konqueror under the GNU General Public License version 2.

Web browser Software for using the World Wide Web

A web browser is application software for accessing the World Wide Web. When a user requests a web page from a particular website, the web browser retrieves the necessary content from a web server and then displays the page on the user's device.

Zooming user interface

In computing, a zooming user interface or zoomable user interface is a graphical environment where users can change the scale of the viewed area in order to see more detail or less, and browse through different documents. A ZUI is a type of graphical user interface (GUI). Information elements appear directly on an infinite virtual desktop, instead of in windows. Users can pan across the virtual surface in two dimensions and zoom into objects of interest. For example, as you zoom into a text object it may be represented as a small dot, then a thumbnail of a page of text, then a full-sized page and finally a magnified view of the page.

File Explorer

File Explorer, previously known as Windows Explorer, is a file manager application that is included with releases of the Microsoft Windows operating system from Windows 95 onwards. It provides a graphical user interface for accessing the file systems. It is also the component of the operating system that presents many user interface items on the screen such as the taskbar and desktop. Controlling the computer is possible without Windows Explorer running.

Toolbar

In computer interface design, a toolbar is a graphical control element on which on-screen buttons, icons, menus, or other input or output elements are placed. Toolbars are seen in many types of software such as office suites, graphics editors and web browsers. Toolbars are usually distinguished from palettes by their integration into the edges of the screen or larger windows, which results in wasted space if too many underpopulated bars are stacked atop each other or interface inefficiency if overloaded bars are placed on small windows.

Graphical widget Element of interaction in a graphical user interface

A graphical widget in a graphical user interface is an element of interaction, such as a button or a scroll bar. Controls are software components that a computer user interacts with through direct manipulation to read or edit information about an application. User interface libraries such as Windows Presentation Foundation, GTK, and Cocoa, contain a collection of controls and the logic to render these.

Bread crumbs Residue of dried bread

Bread crumbs or breadcrumbs consist of crumbled bread of various dryness, sometimes with seasonings added, used for breading or crumbing foods, topping casseroles, stuffing poultry, thickening stews, adding inexpensive bulk to soups, meatloaves and similar foods, and making a crisp and crunchy covering for fried foods, especially breaded cutlets like tonkatsu and schnitzel. The Japanese variety of bread crumbs is called panko.

SlipKnot (web browser)

SlipKnot was one of the earliest World Wide Web browsers, available to Microsoft Windows users between November 1994 and January 1998. It was created by Peter Brooks of MicroMind, Inc. to provide a fully graphical view of the web for users without a SLIP or other TCP/IP connection to the net, hence the name - SLIP...not. SlipKnot provided a graphical web experience through what would otherwise be a text-only Unix shell account. SlipKnot version 1.0 was released on November 22, 1994, approximately 3 weeks before Netscape's Netscape Navigator version 1.0 came out. It was designed to serve a significant fraction of PC/Windows-based Internet users who could not use Mosaic or Netscape at that time.

A navigation bar is a section of a graphical user interface intended to aid visitors in accessing information. Navigation bars are implemented in file browsers, web browsers and as a design element of some web sites.

Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis, and reporting of web data to understand and optimize web usage. Web analytics is not just a process for measuring web traffic but can be used as a tool for business and market research and assess and improve website effectiveness. Web analytics applications can also help companies measure the results of traditional print or broadcast advertising campaigns. It can be used to estimate how traffic to a website changes after launching a new advertising campaign. Web analytics provides information about the number of visitors to a website and the number of page views. It helps gauge traffic and popularity trends, which is useful for market research.

Google Analytics Web analytics service from Google

Google Analytics is a web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic, currently as a platform inside the Google Marketing Platform brand. Google launched the service in November 2005 after acquiring Urchin.

According to IFABC Global Web Standards, a unique user (UU) is "An IP address plus a further identifier. The term "unique visitor" may be used instead of "unique user" but both terms have essentially the same meaning. Sites may use User Agent, Cookie and/or Registration ID." Note that where users are allocated IP addresses dynamically, this definition may overstate or understate the real number of individual users concerned.

An HTTP cookie is a small piece of data stored on the user's computer by the web browser while browsing a website. Cookies were designed to be a reliable mechanism for websites to remember stateful information or to record the user's browsing activity. They can also be used to remember pieces of information that the user previously entered into form fields, such as names, addresses, passwords, and payment card numbers.

Directory (computing) File system structure for locating files

In computing, a directory is a file system cataloging structure which contains references to other computer files, and possibly other directories. On many computers, directories are known as folders, or drawers, analogous to a workbench or the traditional office filing cabinet. The name derives from books like a telephone directory that lists the phone numbers of all the people living in a certain area.

Mobile web analytics studies the behavior of mobile website visitors in a similar way to traditional web analytics. In a commercial context, mobile web analytics refers to the use of data collected as visitors access a website from a mobile phone. It helps to determine which aspects of the website work best for mobile traffic and which mobile marketing campaigns work best for the business, including mobile advertising, mobile search marketing, text campaigns, and desktop promotion of mobile sites and services.

Web tracking is the practice by which operators of websites collect, store and share information about visitors’ activities on the World Wide Web. Analysis of a user's behaviour may be used to provide content that enables the operator to infer their preferences and may be of interest to various parties, such as advertisers. Web tracking can be part of visitor management.

Web navigation refers to the process of navigating a network of information resources in the World Wide Web, which is organized as hypertext or hypermedia. The user interface that is used to do so is called a web browser.

A web beacon is a technique used on web pages and email to unobtrusively allow checking that a user has accessed some content. Web beacons are typically used by third parties to monitor the activity of users at a website for the purpose of web analytics or page tagging. They can also be used for email tracking. When implemented using JavaScript, they may be called JavaScript tags.

References

  1. 1 2 Mark Levene (18 October 2010). An Introduction to Search Engines and Web Navigation (2nd ed.). Wiley. p. 221. ISBN   978-0470526842 . Retrieved 12 November 2012.
  2. "Breadcrumb Navigation | Spidergems". Spidergems. Retrieved 2018-04-27.
  3. Demetri. "16 Important Do's and Don'ts of Effective Web Design". Design Toronto Web. Retrieved 21 June 2016.
  4. Martini, Brands (October 26, 2018). "Everything You Need To Know About Breadcrumbs". Brands Martini.
  5. "Breadcrumbs In Web Design: Examples And Best Practices". smashingmagazine.com. 17 March 2009.
  6. "Breadcrumb Navigation: Good for Website Usability or Not? - Usabilla Blog". usabilla.com. 28 September 2016.
  7. MCCVLC Black Board Help
  8. Setting the Navigation Path by Context in Drupal