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Re: Dynamic Dropdown Form Fields


From: David Ashleydale
Date: Apr 28, 2012 9:27AM

I like the way you think, Tony; it's jogging my brain cells. :)

Now I'm wondering if I can use JavaScript to override what the Tab key
normally does and replace it with my own desired behavior in these cases.

Here's what I want to happen when someone is focused on one of these
dropdowns and they hit the Tab key. In this order:

1. Look at the current value of the dropdown that I'm Tabbing away from.
2. Query the database to find the values I want to populate the next
3. Change the next dropdown from having no options to having the desired
4. Enable it.
5. Focus on it.

I haven't tried it, but it seems doable to me.

And I'll have to try Elle's read-only suggestion, too. That might be a lot
simpler, but I think disabling the field makes slightly more semantic sense
than making it read-only.


On Sat, Apr 28, 2012 at 8:03 AM, Tony Olivero < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:

> David, Elle:
> I've done some similar things on a project in the past. It's a little
> jankety, I admit, but it worked (at least for that project). Basically,
> create a cvariable that gets assigned a number whenever focus moves off the
> first element, put a handler on the element that gets focus in the tab
> order
> next, and if the variable is one, bounce focus back to the field that is
> "supposed" to have focus. This solved the issue of simulating a "pause" for
> the second field to be inserted into the dom. Once the second field has
> focus, you reset the check variable to 0 and the next time the link, or
> whatever was the focused element following the initial select has focus,
> it's kept because you're not telling it to bounce back off.
> Actually, the more I think about it, I used this technique when dynamically
> inserting errors and focusing the user on the error text, but the concept
> is
> the same and should work for you.
> This may be horrible JS, and possibly people smarter than me will tell you
> to run far and fast from my solution, but I thought I'd throw it out there
> for consideration.
> Tony