Web Design: a pet peave

A useful rule of thumb: A mouse is a poor data input device. Many users prefer to keep their hands on the keyboard.

Although HTML forms with list boxes for State and for Year of Birth are common, this is bad interface design. If you really need to validate these fields (I’m willing to concede State), it would be more user friendly to do that validation in code. I live in Michigan–generally (but hardly always) the fourth M on that list–and was born in 1949 (fifthtieth[!] on the list that provoked this complaint). The implications, assuming I resist reaching for the trackball, are that I should press M four (maybe 7?) times to fill a two-character field, and that I should press 1 50 times to fill a four-character field. I’d really rather just type them.

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