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Can manual "Fill In" entries be entered into an HTML Select box?

Posted on 2005-04-27
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Hello,

I searched for several hours on the Internet and could not find anything that addresses this question specifically. I joined this service just to get an authoritative answer to this question.

I want an html select box (<select>) that will allow manual entries. In other words, I want to be able to type in values manually, that are not contained in the drop down list.  I can do this with combo boxes in MS Access, using VBA, but I cannot figure out how to do it in html.

I will greatly appreciate any advice or help anyone might provide.

Thank you very much,
JA67

P.S.  I rated the question difficulty based on how difficult I imagine the question to be for an expert. I imagine that a yes or no anser to this questions is "easy" but that a solution, if possible, is "moderate."
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Question by:JA67
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Expert Comment

by:GrandSchtroumpf
ID: 13881223
combo-boxes are not part of html.
you need to use a "select" and a "input type=text" to do that.
... or you can do it with dhtml, but i don't recommend that solution.  using standard html is always better.
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Author Comment

by:JA67
ID: 13881277

GrandSchtroumpf -- Are you saying that I can somehow combine the functionality of a "select" and a "input type" to create the functionality I have described in my question? If yes, can you give me an example of how I would do it? If no, can you give me an example of how I would do it with dhtml?

Thank you.
JA67
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Expert Comment

by:GrandSchtroumpf
ID: 13881283
for dhtml combo-box widgets:  http://www.google.com/search?q=dhtml+combobox
webfx is a popular widget site:  http://webfx.eae.net/dhtml/combobox/combobox.htm

this way you can have an idea of what's out there.
but once again i suggest you don't use these (except maybe for an intranet, where you have complete control over the user agent that is used).
a common inconvenient of these widgets is that they have poor keyboard support.
i always use the keyboard for form navigation... but that might be just me.
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GrandSchtroumpf earned 500 total points
ID: 13881319
> Are you saying that I can somehow combine the functionality of a "select" and a "input type" to create the functionality I have described in my question?

nope, i'm saying that you need to use separate elements.
you can have one select that holds your options plus a "other".
and then another input/text element where the user types the value if (s)he chose "other".
you use javascript to disable the input/text when an option other than "other" is selected and use form validation to make sure the input/text is not empty when the "other" has been selected.
it can look fine... just a matter of presentation.
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Author Comment

by:JA67
ID: 13881713

Thanks for all your speedy help. I'm going to see how far I can get with what you have answered so far.

Thank you!
JA67
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Expert Comment

by:GrandSchtroumpf
ID: 13881765
<:°)
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