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We developped a 3D web-app for computers and touch devices in which you can decorate your interior with wallpaper, furnitures and so on. You can select an object or a wall (click or touch) inside the 3D scene and have a menu with some contextual actions (move, replace, delete...).

But, as everything is interactive, wherever you click you select something. Therefore, you can never have nothing selected. So, I'm looking for a way to deselect the selected item.

I've got some leads, but I would like to know what is, in your opinion, the most intuitive way to deselect an object ?

  • What is your contextual menu like? Would you be able to just add some "close" or "done" action there that deselects? – maxathousand Sep 27 at 20:58
  • Yes, I think I will do that. Thanks ! – Daka Sep 30 at 6:52
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While everything is clickable and you also want to support touch I would like to suggest 2 solutions:

  1. Second click or double tap to deselect

  2. Provide a dedicated icon somewhere to undo a selection.

Personally, I would go with 2nd solution as it's visible since the beginning to the user, and 1st one is alike 'discoverable' action (until they try, they won't know about it)

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    Thanks lukaszkups. I came up with these solutions too. And I think I will implement them both. – Daka Sep 30 at 6:48
  • no problem - glad I could helped you :) – lukaszkups Sep 30 at 7:20
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The previous answers where right, but not complete. The selection mode would be a perfect solution for this.

When selecting an object, the UI is entering a selection mode, where all the actions are applied only to the selected object. This mode should also feature the contextual buttons including "Apply" and "Cancel", where the user can either save or dismiss the changes to the object; obviously these buttons will exit the selection mode and deselect the object.

Further reading on modes in The Humane Interface by Jef Raskin

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