Best to display long list of options

About to start wire framing for a desktop app. The first screen will show a list of what we call “objects”. There are over 100 of them. We want the user to choose 1 and open it. Question to the forum is what is the best way to display all these options (objects) without cluttering the screen? I thought about a dropdown listing all of the objects but that’s a lot of scrolling.

Some options that ran through my head are:

  1. Offer a search window that allows the user to do an incremental/contextual search.
  2. Show letters A-Z… user clicks on a letter and it shows all those objects that start with that letter. Assuming they know the object they are looking for.
  3. Show 5 columns of 20 objects each in alphabetical order with radio buttons beside them. Left and right arrow keys to the side so they can jump page to page. Too busy?
  4. Show all 3 above. Too busy?

Open to any ideas that you think might be better. Thanks in advance.

Hi there.

I had a similar probably and went with a searchable select, it’s a search and dropdown combined. During beta testing, I found it to work well with users. We had over 450 choices too.

It operates like the Autocomplete combo box in material UI (google it cause I can’t include the links)

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Rasha… thanks for sharing your experience concerning this. The autocomplete is what I was actually leaning towards. Thanks for making my choice a little easier.

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