I am designing a setting panel for users to create gauge charts. A gauge can either have a handle (left), a progress bar (middle), or both* (right)… but obviously need at least one of them.

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I would like to let users chose which option they want. In a way, there are two yes/no questions: do you want a handle or not? do you want a progress bar or not? This could then be formatted as two toggle switches.

Yet both binary options are interlinked, as we don't want users to disable both options at the same time.

So what would be the best way to let user select which option(s) they want?

Adding an warning/error message when the user disable both options? Toggling one option if a user disable the other? A radio items or drop-down menu with 3 options?

* Note: whether this is too redundant, whether it is a good idea or not to include this option is interesting, but out of the scope of this question.

  • Why might users want a choice in your product? We interact with gauges all of the time but don't usually configure them. – Izquierdo Apr 1 at 3:42
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    @Izquierdo thanks for your comment. The fact is that I'm not designing gauge chart themselves… but a piece of software that enables “my” users to design charts (for their users). So I agree that gauge users/consumers won't need customisation, yet in my case, I'm designing for users of a “gauge builder” system. – ebosi Apr 1 at 8:12
  • Then I agree with Nicholas' answer below. Show the user visually what each options will look like, set a default option, and let them choose other options by clicking on them like a radio button. – Izquierdo Apr 1 at 14:41

Have all 3 options displayed in big buttons with icon reference and behave like radio buttons. The user can only choose one at any given time. Default state can either be one chosen or none.


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I would try to avoid giving an option to users where they could unselect both options and be displayed with a warning dialog box with a message "You need to select at least one option". I believe users would easily hit this error since you don't have that many options. It's easy to unselect both while trying out each option.

Therefore, I would go with a dropdown option instead (as shown below), where we can avoid the warning dialog box.

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