Thinking a bit more about free interactions: many of the interactions presented in the article aren’t actually “free”. The bouncy snapback when scrolling beyond the edge of a page on the iPhone is an amazing indicator that you’ve reached the end of a page in an environment with no (or very subtle and hard to discern) scrollbars. Additionally it makes the interaction feel much more natural. And my nervous habit of de-re-selecting also served a purpose: legibility on many webpages suffers from poor contrast between font color and background color. If I remember correctly, highlighting text resulted in nice, clean white text on a dark blue background, much easier on the eyes than many other color combinations. Trying this trick in Firefox 3 right now however made me realize that text highlighting behavior has apparently changed (and I hadn’t even noticed…), which would explain why I no longer de-re-select as frenetically as I used to. Legibility issues aside, de-re-selecting serves another purpose: it helps me stay focused on an area or specific sentence while scrolling or switching to another tab.

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