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Motif and CDE 2.1 Style Guide Reference
Context-sensitive help is help information that is adapted to the current
context of an element or group of elements.
Figure 10. Context-Sensitive Help.
When to Use
RecommendedProvide context-sensitive help for each window, control, and, where
useful, for each element with which the user can interact.
RequiredWhen the user presses F1 or Help, display context-sensitive help related
to the element that has focus.
RequiredWhen the user is in help mode (as a result of pressing Shift F1, Shift
Help, or selecting the On Item entry in the Help menu), display
context-sensitive help on the element on which the user clicks the SELECT
button, if it is in the same window in which help mode was initiated.
RequiredIf help is not available for the element for which it was requested,
provide help for the control that contains the element, or for some
higher-level grouping of controls, or for the window as a whole.
RecommendedDisplay context-sensitive help in a secondary window. However, if all the
help information provided within a window is brief, it may be displayed in the
information or message area.
RecommendedAllow a user to enter and exit from instant help mode. This has no effect
on user interaction except that it always displays instant help for the
element under the pointer.
RecommendedDisplay instant help in the information area of the window that contains
the pointer or in a separate window popped up at the pointer location.
RecommendedProvide context-sensitive help for choices that are unavailable when using
RecommendedProvide context-sensitive help for choices that are unavailable.
RecommendedIf a choice is displayed with unavailable emphasis and context-sensitive
help is provided, describe in a Help dialog why the choice is unavailable and
how the user might make the choice available. For example, if the user
requests help on the Paste choice currently displayed with unavailable
emphasis, explain in the Help dialog that Paste is not available because the
clipboard is empty.
Supplemental Related Topics
For more information, see the Help (Menu/Action Choice) and Keyboard
(Device) reference pages.
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