Poll: Floating or embedded palettes?

I’m starting to think I’m the only person in the world who uses floating palettes, so it got me wondering, do others?

How do you show your palettes?
  • Embedded
  • Floating
0 voters

Just tried floating…
experience was pretty bad :pensive:
As soon as a search result it clicked, the floating inspector palette takes the focus, instead of the source-code field.

I haven’t experienced (or perhaps noticed) that, but yeah, there are issues with floating for sure.

My experience with floating palettes is that it’s harder to keep the window in sync with the active document window (whereas embedded ones are one per document). For example, when a non-document window comes to the front, the floating window should hide; so all your non-document windows must hide the floating window when they activate (there are other ways, but never truly elegant IMO).

Also, floating palettes can stole the focus of the document window when the user doesn’t want and won’t when the user would want. I myself often have to watch the titlebar of the floating window just to know if my next keyboard press will go to the floating or document window. An embedded palette of course shares the focus with the document.

I might have to bite the bullet and switch, and depending on the result of this pool, recommend that Xojo abandon the floating palettes.


I prefer something of a compromise of the 2 options – “floating, but dockable”. Both have their pros and cons and I advocate letting the end-user decide. There are several applications that start with an embedded palette, but allow the end-user to undock it to make it a floating palette.

If the majority of users use embedded anyway, I’d rather they just abandon floating and concentrate their efforts elsewhere.


But then you loose the advantage using multiple monitors. Having the option is not bad, i think. But in my actual (smaller) projects i use embed.

Last chance to make your choice…

I use floating and then set my IDE and palettes up in a manner similar to Visual Studio. Every once in a while, the DIE doesn’t remember the positioning and has to be adjusted, but since the IDE is left open on that system most of the time, it’s only after a reboot and only 1 out of 5 times.

It looks like the majority use embedded, and it’s not close.

Thanks everyone.

If your app can provide a great experience embedding its pallets, go for it, it will help you if you at some point desire to make a tablet version of such app. But some apps are best suited for use in 2 or more monitors, and those have a much better UX with a work area taking a full monitor and the tooling and pallets in another one. Every app may be a new decision. There’s no a “I’ll will choose one way and go for it for all cases”.