CHROME’S “SCROLL TO TEXT” LOOKS TO ANCHOR TAG THE WEB
Anchor tags are awesome little HTML tricks and when implemented properly, they can add a lot to a websites aesthetics. Not only that, they are very useful in assisting users in navigating quickly to specific areas of a webpage with ease.
With some simple styling, I can lead you to a specific paragraph, image, video or even a specific section of a different page. Here’s an example:
This is a very simple implementation of anchor tags but I think you get the gist. Google even uses anchor tags when serving search results from sites that have anchor tags. Wikipedia is a prime example.
When available, the “jump to” link will take users to the specific portion of an article most related to their initial search query. Again, this is nothing new but it is a very helpful and simple way to make website navigation easier.
What if you could link to a particular portion of a website that doesn’t contain HTML anchor tags? Wouldn’t that be handy? Perhaps you want to share a lengthy article you’ve read but want to send someone to a particular spot in the content?
Well, the Chrome team is making a way for you to do just that.
Spotted by Dinsan Francis of Chrome Story, the experimental flag will allow users to add content-specific data to a URL string so that clicking the link will act as an anchor tag.
Currently hidden behind a flag, “Scroll-to-text” appears to be getting its start as a GitHub project and is currently running as an experiment in Chrome 74 which is slated for release to Stable around the end of April.
The use cases are fairly obvious from a user standpoint. As I mentioned above, the ability to link to a specific section of a webpage’s content can be a major time saver and I thing it will be a welcome feature when it arrives. I’m sure you can think of some more imaginative possibilities.
The good news is that tinkering with the Chrome Canary browser is much safer and easier than the Chrome OS counterpart. So, as soon as this new feature hits Canary, we’ll make sure to get you a hands-on video so you can see it in action. In the meantime, you can read more about the project on GitHub.
As Dinsan mentions, this feature could end up being utilized across the web as the addition to the Chromium project would make it available to the majority of modern web browsers.