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UI under development. Designs are subject to change.

Trackpad Multitouch (Indirect manipulation)

Gesture Types

  • 1 finger: traditional pointing
  • 2 finger: traditional scrolling
  • 3 finger horiz.: three fingers in a row (usually ring/middle/index)
  • 4 finger horiz.: four fingers in a row (usually pinky/ring/middle/index) - may be hard to disambiguate horizontal swipes on small trackpads, so we will overlap many gestures with the three finger variants
  • 1 finger edge: one finger moving in and out of the trackpad bounds
    • May require hardware support.
    • Vertical gestures may be problematic because of limited space.
  • 3 finger group: three fingers in a circle (usually thumb/middle/index [or ring])
    • Due to people resting their thumb on the trackpad, many of these gestures are problematic, particularly pinch and rotate gestures. Swipe gestures are generally pretty usable.
  • 4 finger group: four fingers in a circle (usually thumb + ring/middle/index)
    • Problematic as above. Swipe gestures are acceptable.

Proposed behaviors

Main view

    • one finger — cursor
    • two fingers — content manipulation
      • Sites can override all two finger gestures passed to the content area
      • Pinch - defaults to page zoom
      • Rotate - defaults to nothing
      • Translate - defaults to scroll
    • three fingers horizontal
      • tab switch
    • three fingers up — into overview
    • three fingers down — focus panels
    • four fingers up — into overview
    • four fingers down — focus panels
    • four fingers horizontal — window switching
    • three finger group translate — back/forward or tab switch (reverse of horizontal's behavior)
    • three finger group rotate — problematic because of two finger with anchored thumb
    • one finger left/right edge in — back/forward
    • one finger left/right edge out — forward/back, or sidebar reveal
    • one finger top edge in — overview
    • one finger bottom edge in — panels


    • two fingers horizontal — switch tabs
    • two fingers up/down? — close tab
    • three fingers — switch windows
    • four fingers — window switching
    • three fingers down — out of overview
    • four fingers down — out of overview
    • three or four fingers up — logout


    • two fingers = scroll current panel
    • three fingers horizontal = switch panels
    • three fingers up = back to main view

Full Multitouch (Direct manipulation)

  • All content area gestures (two and one finger) passed directly to web pages
  • Default behaviors for one and two finger gestures as above
  • We may reserve the above 3/4 finger gestures for os needs:
    • three fingers — window movement/resizing
    • four fingers — overview
Jan 25, 2010, 2:56 PM