Though they are implemented quite differently in each case, a number of Apple's new iPad applications feature navigation scrubbers (scrub bars) that allow people to quickly move through sets of content or media with simple touch (tap and drag) gestures.
Scrubbers differ from standard pagination controls because they usually:
- Display a large set of elements to choose from that communicates the range of content available (not just previous and next actions).
- Use small multiples to display the set of options visually
- provide a larger (zoomed in) preview as people browse the set.
Not all of Apple's scrubbers have each of these characteristics, but they all have at least one.
Scrubbers have also gotten picked up by developers creating content for the iPad -as illustrated in Wired's iPad application demo. Chances are when iPad applications become available in the App Store, there will be several apps that follow Apple's model and make use of scrubbers for navigation of content and media sets.
Check out more articles about the design of the iPad.