What is a Toggle?

Toggle is a digital magazine highlighting the vital role that technology plays in companies and organizations; and the men and women who make it work. We’re different than other tech magazines in that we don’t just interview experts — we dig deep into the real challenges that these leaders face in their day-to-day roles, from digging out of technical debt to understanding the impact of changes in one department on other departments.

A toggle is a switch that enforces two mutually exclusive states — on or off. These switches are found in almost every setting on your computer where there is a menu of options with the ability to turn them on or off. A toggle can also be a hardware switch, like the Caps Lock or Num Lock keys on your keyboard.

The problem with toggles is that they are cognitively difficult to use and can be confusing if not used correctly. This is because they don’t rely on proximity as checkboxes and radio buttons do, but instead require the user to read both the toggle itself (which could look empty) and its label. Toggle switches can also be confusing if they rely on color to convey their state. This is problematic for users with red/green color deficiency, and can be even more confusing if the toggle uses the same colors as other widgets that rely on proximity and/or color to convey their state, such as a green light and a red stop sign.