# Swiping and scrolling

A brief complaint—probably not original—about how two-finger swiping works in Safari:

In case you’re wondering, yes, I do know that I can use System Preferences to turn off the “Swipe between pages” behavior. But I don’t want to turn it off; I just want it to be smarter and not interfere with horizontal scrolling.

Update 4/8/12
Carl in the comments is right: the problem I’m illustrating here is with the iTunes Preview site, not with horizontal scrolling in general. I should have known that since my own site has source code fields that often need to be scrolled horizontally to see the ends of long lines, and the two-finger swipe works just the way I want it to in those fields. My lame excuse for this error is that the iTunes Preview pages are where I typically run across web page sections that need horizontal scrolling; I conflated behavior on those pages with general behavior.

I also agree with Tobias that it’s annoying when the page starts to move when you’ve hit the end of scrolling in a field. You can see that happen in the video when I overshoot in the vertical scrolling demonstration.

## 3 Responses to “Swiping and scrolling”

1. Tobias says:

On Snow Leopard I don’t have the horizontal problem, but I do find annoying that vertical scrolling will switch from field to page if it can’t go any further, and especially that this happens mid-scroll. It means I can’t just flick to get to the beginning or end of a list, cause if I’m to vigorous the whole list will scroll out of view.

2. Carl says:

The iTunes website is a bad example, because those aren’t real div or iframe boxes. It’s some weird JavaScript headache inducing stuff. Try it on a real horizontal overflow and the results are less annoying.

3. Yeah, I tried it out on Mac OS X Hints and got the correct behavior. (I tried to include a URL, but I think it was rejected as spam.)

As I recall, earlier, the iTunes page was even worse, because it didn’t respond to the scroll gesture at all. At some point they must have added JS to make it respond to the scroll gesture, but it still breaks when the scroll event is interpreted as a forward/back gesture by the browser before it can be sent to the page.

The real question is, why is the iTunes website so broken? Why are they even putting these screenshot into a horizontal scroller in the first place? Horizontal scrolling is acceptable on iOS because you just touch it, but it is awful, awful, awful on the desktop and should never have been put into website or iTunes.app.