I find pull down menus irritating. Scratch that. Pull down menus aren’t irritating, the implementation of the menus are. And I’m not talking about the pull down menus used in desktop applications but the ones used in web-based applications.
Why you ask? Well, because developer Edgar Hover decides that the menu should appear on a mouse (h)over (i.e. when you position the mouse over a certain area) in his application.
Developer James Click decides that you must click on a certain area for the menu to appear in his application.
Developer Joe Tree decides that he wants sub-menus inside menus and he may decide to have click-based menus or mouse-over based menus. And you find that suddenly when you’ve moved a mouse a menu disappears and you’re like, Where’d that go?
Don’t the bad developer names I used irritate you? That’s what pull down menus succeed in doing–irritate you with the lack of consistency across applications. The worst part is that there’s no way for you to know what to do–you have to figure it out by stumbling and bumbling.
I used to encounter pull-down menus in a web-based application (of a company I worked for) daily a few months ago. It was infuriating to navigate because it had multiple levels of sub-menus (and a mouse-over implementation). What’s worse was that the target area was small, so you needed zen concentration to click an item. Not so good for those untrained in zen archery techniques.
Maybe the solution is to get ‘trained’ or to RTFM. Those users, they’re pretty dumb right?
PS: RTFM : Read The Freaking Manual (wink wink)