Continuous Filter

Continuous Filter is a dynamic query with the following principles:

         The user gives search criteria, and the system filters out the non-matching items.

         To avoid unnecessary work, the user should be able to give as minimal search criteria as possible. The search criteria and the results are synchnorized, i.e. the system updates the result view after each keystroke or mouse event.

         The search criteria and the results are visible simultaneously.

         The matching substrings of the search criteria are highlighted on the search results.

         Best matches are shown first.

Use Continuous Filter, when the user does not need context (non-matching items that are filtered out) to accomplish his goal. If the goal requires comparison of the hits with the non-hits, use Continuous Highlight.

Example 1: Filter Table [Laakso00, p. 46]

Example 2: Contact cards in Nokia Communicator

Example 3: HomeFinder [Williamson92]



Laakso S.A.,
User Interfaces.
Lecture notes of the 581391-1 User Interfaces course, series D405, Department of Computer Science, University of Helsinki, 2000.


Williamson C., Shneiderman B.,

The Dynamic HomeFinder: Evaluating dynamic queries in a real-estate information exploration system

ACM SIGIR'92 Conf. Proc., Copenhagen, Denmark, 1992, p. 338-346.




Updated 21.07.2003 / Sari A. Laakso, email