Category: Technology
Hits: 8919

Time for another rave about the software from hell, Microsoft Outlook 2007.

Today it's about the address book. I have a mailing list in my local address book and I want to add a name to it.

So I open the mailing list, which is sorted by name as it was a normal contact, and then I try to drag an additional address into it.
No, that doesn't work. You can't drag and drop. Unbelievable. But I get over it. Actually, you can drag a contact into the name of the group, which adds a lot of spurious text to the group name, but you can't drag a contact into the group. That is insane.

Luckily the address book has an add button with a nice big plus. That's the universal sign for adding. So it must be what I need. But no. This dialog doesn't search the address book. It's for adding a contact by typing in their details, that is, it's for adding a contact which is not in your address is not for adding contacts already in your address book, which would have to be 95% of what users want to do. So now I understand why Microsoft spends millions of usability studies. They apparently can't work this stuff out. Anyway, what do I do? Ah, there's another button in this insanely complicated dialog box: Select members. Finally I can search address books. Of course, it doesn't not search as I type. I put some text in, choose the address book I want, and then hit a another button. 

Why can't I drag and drop?

I don't rave about open source software which has problems, because you can file a bug. My bugs seem to always get fixed. Once it took two years, but it was fixed.  Who do you contact at microsoft? How can it make something as slow, complex and horrid as Outlook? It's not an accidental mess, it's a deliberate, complex mess. It's a perverse anti-masterpiece.