I don’t normally use IE, so when I was taking a look at something in it, I suddenly noticed how many mysterious unnamed panels the status bar has.
A little tinkering identified some of them. Others remain a mystery. Left to right (this is IE6, and may differ according to what add-ons you have installed):
- Main part of the status bar. Shows the URL you’re about to jump to, or “Done” when it thinks it’s finished loading a page (though sometimes it hasn’t really), or nothing. Fair enough.
- Progress bar, only appears when loading a page
- Single left click gives me access to the MSN toolbar popup blocker settings
- Double-clicking takes me to a dialogue to manage add-ons
- Double-clicking gives me information on the Security certificate, if the page has one. On a secure page, you get a padlock icon here.
- Icon and text indicating the page’s zone. Double-clicking takes you to the Security options
Maybe someone can reveal what the two blank unknown panels are for. But it strikes me as pretty silly that these are here, blank, with no clues given. No tooltips when hovering, and no response when left-clicking, left double-clicking or right-clicking. Why bother having them?
Even those that do respond shouldn’t be blank, not if the designers intend people to actually use them. Why would you bother clicking around a blank panel? Are we supposed to use our sixth sense to work out what they do?