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Fredy Ore <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Fredy Ore <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 28 Apr 2006 14:29:52 +0100
text/plain (72 lines)
On 26/04/06, Gart, Mitchell <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

I'm finding, as a user, that sometimes I'm really annoyed by web pages
that automatically update themselves.  Examples are a weather page and a
page with sports scores.  I think the idea in designing them is that the
designers add a timer that causes the page to refresh itself
every few seconds, so it will always show up-to-date information to
users even if the page just sits there on the screen.

Does anybody else find this annoying?  Or conversely, is there anybody
who is designing pages like this and wants to defend them?  Thanks,

- Mitch Gart

Hi Mitch,

I used to work for IMG/TWI in Sydney a few years back and we had to create pages that refreshed in a similar way, for live scoring, commentary and timing.

We found that there are predominatly two types of these pages used this way in sport:
1. A commentary page (with times and description of events) that refreshes every few minutes
eg. 12:39pm Greg Norman on 5 under par scores a birdie on hole 9.
2. A live score page that refreshes every few minutes
eg. A tennis score and match scoreboard.

Each worked a little different.

The commentary page started as a short page (usually inside an 800x600 screen page fold) prior to the event, but when the event started until it finished, the page would grow significantly with content. We found it was important to always inform the user that the page refreshes automatically on the top of every commentary page. We identified that while the event was occurring, updates to content would grow in a desending manner (old updates at the botton and new updates at the top). When the event finished we reversed this so users could come back and read the events as it unfolded chronologically, in an accending manner (old updates at the top & latest updates at the bottom) and stopped the page refresh.

The live scoring page predominantly sat in a single area, or sometimes as a small pop-up window where the user can keep either in the background and look at over the course of event.

Informing the user early (at the very top of the page) of refreshes, was very important we found, as users had different intentions when visiting a page before the event, during and after.

We created refreshing pages both commentary and live scoring, for sporting events including tennis, motor racing, cricket and golf.

Hope this helps,

Fredy :)
Fredy D. Oré
Lead Experience Architect 


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