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A HotZone is a region that when activated triggers some action. For instance, a button is a "hot zone" that when clicked by a mouse causes the attached event handler to fire, say by closing a dialog.

HotZones include all manner of things. By the definition above, any real estate on a screen that has an event handler attached to it, triggered by a mouse click is a HotZone. Almost all widgets are hot zones. For instance, an edit box is a HotZone because you can click on the text field to adjust the cursor position. A selectable list is a HotZone because you can click on an entry to select it.

HyperLink?s are implemented as HotZones in most MosaicBrowser? descendants as well.

In order to make the system accessible, the interface designer must take care to provide keyboard triggers as well. For instance, placing the hot zones in the tab order, so that a person can move from control to control by hitting <TAB>. Typically, visual feedback is included here. The control that will be triggered has what is called focus, and it is outlined with a broken line, say.

By adding keyboard access, this also allows people avoid switching between KeyboardMode and MouseMode, an added benefit. Actually, tabbing was initially added to allow people without mice to use a GUI.



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