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I have a reporting tool where input filter has standard date from, date to, some checkboxes, but main input is a list of comma separated items (~1000).

Now I don't want to make a huge textblock that would contain them all, because it would look ugly in comparison with other small fields. Also even if I showed them all, I doubt that user would be able to easily locate a specific entry.

My idea would be for a small text field. When clicked I would show extended popup where user could see his whole input, but after closing, the text field would show first X items and redact the others with ellipsis (perhaps it could say "… and Y more").

Is there a better way?

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It is tough to answer without knowing the platform (desktop pc, mobile, app, etc) but I believe your proposed solution is in the right direction.

Rather than redact with an ellipsis, a better solution may be to allow the smaller input field to simply overflow (with scroll arrows inside the input field, or however your platform/browser treats overflow windows).

Crude Wireframe of solution:

  • Forgot to mention, it is desktop. I like the idea with small window and scroll bar. What minimum number of rows would you show? – Zikato Feb 8 '17 at 6:36
  • Depends on the data, the usefulness to the user, and how much screen real estate you have to work with. Given that it's on a desktop, I'd recommend somewhere between 3 and 7 rows. – Shan Newton Feb 8 '17 at 17:13

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