How Toggles Are Used in Web Applications

May 19, 2024 by No Comments

A toggle is a control that allows users to enable or disable features with just a single click. When toggles are used on pages and in content, they should be clear, straightforward and deliver an immediate result. They should also be easy to use with a single action and follow standard visual design patterns, so users can easily understand what the controls mean.

Toggles are a good choice for feature flags that will be short-lived, or which will be flipped off on some release versions and turned on on others. This helps prevent a bugfix from accidentally worsening existing behavior, while allowing teams to experiment with new functionality. However, for longer-lived feature flags it may be more appropriate to use radio buttons or checkboxes instead of toggles.

When it comes to managing feature toggles, a centralized database is usually a better option than storing them in static files. With a centralized database it’s easier to see the full state of the toggle, and change the configuration as needed.

Using a centralized database for toggle configuration is often accompanied by some form of admin UI to enable system operators, testers and product managers to view and modify the toggle state. This is especially important once you start to scale your toggles, as modifying the toggle configuration in static files can quickly become cumbersome and difficult to manage.