Why Web Forms Suck!

My brother called me the other day. He is a novice to the web (long story) and he was trying to cut and paste his resume into his webmail. He couldn’t do it. The copy function wasn’t working. Impossible, I said. Later, I went to his house and understood what he was saying.

Yahoo mail (like other sites) uses a rich text editor which produces fancy styles and formatting. But in so doing it disables Cut/Paste capability. Allegedly. (I’ve noticed this in wordpress as well). Actually though, it’s still possible to copy/paste if you do the Control-C commands, but in the browser window the menu option Edit –> Copy is completely disabled.

Last night my brother called again. He said that while making a routine copy of a folder of photographs. Windows started making hundreds of copies of the same photos (and wouldn’t stop!!). I have no idea what he was doing. I told him that whatever he was doing to stop it, and let me look at it. Being around novices really gives you insight into the frustrations that many users feel.