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Talk:Mobile Design Pattern: Master Detail

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28 Sep
Article Review by Larry101 (20090928)

This article discusses a mobile design pattern which is fairly common in mobile applications – the Master Detail design pattern. It begins by describing the design pattern, illustrated through the use of a contact phonebook example, showing how the design pattern splits sets of information into two views. The first view lists the separate items and allows an individual item to be selected. The detail view shows more information for a particular item in the set. Advantages and disadvantages of the design pattern are also provided, along with a discussion of when and how to make use of master/detail views.

The article is nicely written and is clear and concise. The choice of example (phonebook) is one that most readers will be able to relate to. The discussion of advantages, disadvantages and design advice is well-motivated and shows a good understanding of the use of this design pattern. The author also suggests a useful alternative, fish-eye menus, which are appropriate where detailed information can be shown as part of the master view. Several useful tips are also provided to improve user efficiency (such as searching and sorting) and ensure users are able to navigate the information set as quickly as possible.

A useful design pattern that will be applicable in a wide range of applications.