Flash Usability Tragedy
The My Coke Rewards site features one of the worst examples of keyboard navigation I have ever seen. Their Flash GUI is painfully slow, focus jumps randomly from field to field, and it is rife with what appear to be threading bugs. Entering codes from bottle caps starts with this dialog:
I played a bit with this dialog and discovered the following:
- After typing the code, I can click somewhere else in the GUI. Now, when I click in the field again, the cursor jumps to position 0.
- If I use the keyboard to move the cursor to a new location, and then click somewhere with the mouse, the cursor jumps back to the previous location. No matter where I click in the field, after a few moments the cursor mysteriously jumps back to the old location.
- I hit Tab once, and nothing happened. Hit Tab again, and focus moved to the Done button. Wait a moment, and Done loses focus. Now I cannot see which field has focus.
- Click in the code field again. Now the cursor again jumps to position 0, NOT where I clicked. Press Tab once and all of the text in the field is selected, hit Tab again and focus jumps to the Submit button. After less than a second, Submit loses focus.
- Now I click in the code field and start hitting Tab. The focus order appears completely random if I keep hitting Tab: Help, “nothing”, “Select All”, Submit, Help, Help, Done, “Select All”, etc. It is complete nonsense, hard to explain without showing a video of some sort. It just randomly jumps from field to field.
- After all this tabbing, now Submit doesn’t even work. But if I click Submit again, it accepts my code and grants 3 points. But wait…the code is still there. So I submit again, and get another 3 points. But several seconds later, an error dialog appears.
This is a huge company with nearly unlimited resources. This site is the centerpiece of a hugely expensive ad campaign. Yet…they can’t even make fundamental keyboard navigation work. These are not subtle bugs, either. They aren’t even close to correct.
I don’t get it.
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