The Office 2007 UI Is Growing On Me, slowly… I’ve complained in the past, and I’m still not so sure I’ll ever be totally assimilated. But the ribbon bar UI is starting to grow on me. I’ve forced myself to use Word 2007 for a couple of drafts and papers, and it’s not so bad.
My biggest pain points come in when I start down any of my old Word 2003 ALT-key navigation trees. I used to do things like hit ALT-E, then arrow down to Paste Special. Now Word 2007 just mocks me by telling me “Office 2003 access key: ALT, E, Continue Typing the Office 2003 menu key sequence, or press escape to cancel”. Even if I dutifully hit the appropriate arrow keys, it doesn’t give me my paste special dialog. I have to remember the hotkey from the menu. Was it P, or S, or maybe E? (It’s S if you’re wondering)
Now, when I hit the brick wall with my learned behavior, it is pretty easy to find what I need, but it breaks my concentration. I’m not sure how long it’ll take before I un-learn all those old behaviors, but so far my ALT-key + arrows habit is alive and well.
In a related note, I’ve started reading Jensen Harris’ Office UI Blog, to help understand the new UI. In a recent post Jensen talks about their exclusion/inclusion of the “Spelling Check is Complete” dialog. Instead of requiring a click, I think they should just fade something similar to toast into the middle of the screen, and then let it fade away. If a dialog is meant for one-directional communication, don’t make me click it to get rid of it. And if you’re going to keep the dialog:
Does it cancel all my changes? Is it the same as OK?