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In computer operating systems, a double click is an action performed by users with the help of a mouse – the pointer placed over the object or icon and the button on the mouse is quickly pressed twice. A double click is performed without moving the location of the mouse. Unlike a single click, which selects the object or icon, a double click usually executes the action or opens the object.
On most systems, a double click is performed with the left mouse button. For most users it is not considered an advanced interaction technique. The physical process of double clicking involves holding the mouse still and rapidly repeating a click.
A double click actually allows two actions to be completed with the help of same mouse button, similar to the Shift key on a keyboard. The functionalities of a double click differ based on the scenario in which it is used. In the case of desktop of operating systems, the action leads to the opening of folders or files, while in the case of word processing applications it can used for selecting text. In some cases, it can be used for displaying the context menu of an object as well.
Double clicking requires very precise motor control and could at times be a problem, especially for the elderly and people with physical disabilities. Most times, other alternatives or slowing the system recognition speed for double clicking can help these users.