I am trying to find an example of progressive validation. We have a UI for a a visual editor where a user does things like indicate dimensions in pixels or percent.
The editor properties are in sets of tabs so not all fields are visible at the same time. We have been discussing how and if we do validation in this UI.
I come from the perspective that: a) Validation is useful because it will create a communication channel where the user can learn the expectations of the software and "get better" at what is required. b) It is always better to indicate validation errors on input fields directly (whether or not a summary is used elsewhere) so that users have a visual cue for what needs to be changed.
My colleague, for whom I have nothing but the utmost respect disagrees. His logic is as follows: a) It will be more expedient to either prevent certain types of entry or, in the case of some entry to change it to a more appropriate value if it is invalid. For example, if someone uses a percentage value greater than 100 the UI would reset the value to 100 in a lost focus event. b) Because we are in a tab environment, some of the errors will not be visible to the user. Using a summary is futile since there can potentially be "a lot" of validation errors.
I thought a solution around this might be a progressive disclosure of invalid values. As a user inputs values that may be incorrect they are flagged in some kind of summary. The summary allows users to navigate to the fields in question as well without them being visible.
I wish I was an original person but I'm sure there are precedents here. My questions are as follows:
Anything to add to the perspectives of either me or my colleague?
Any examples of a UI like this with complex entry that does progressive validation?