Because form submission and JavaScript are really difficult, y'know



  • I was about to send a postcard to a friend in another country, so I went to visit the national post company's (TNT Post, Netherlands) web site to check on tariffs. When I got to the correct page I was presented with a drop-down box in which I had to select the type of mail I wanted to send (letters, packets, abroad, etc) and then had to press the 'Search' button. I was already confused by the caption, since it was a fairly small list and all it had to do was list some prices, nothing more. There was no search operation involved.

    But the surprise came when I pressed search: nothing happened. As a coder, I tried some tricks (pressing the Return key, selecting another option and the one I wanted again and try again) but nothing worked. So in a feat of brilliance I fired op Internet Explorer and copy-pasted the URL. Hey, it works! I tried some Chrome and Opera as well, but didn't work.

    I decided to contact the company with the complaint that it didn't work (I was an "upset customer"). The response I got is something like the following:

     

    Dear sir,

    Thank you for your reaction. You indicate that you are unable to use the tariff finder without Explorer. I understand it is annoying when you cannot proceed with your search query.

    The applications that are part of the sites of TNT Post are specifically developed voor PC's which run Windows with Internet Explorer. For use of these applications the follow requirements apply:
    - Computer with internet access: Windows 98 or higher
    - Browser: Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher

    The operating systems which are not supported are among others Linux and Mac OS (Apple). The browsers which are not supported are among others Mozilla-Firefox, Safari, Netscape and Opera.

    I will forward your concerns to a collegue who is responsible for this. We will use your reaction to review if we can improve our services. You will not receive further feedback about this however.

    Kind regards,

    Customer service

     

    And I thought we lived in 2008.

    A sub-WTF is that the e-mail I received as a response did not contain the actual reply. Instead it contained a link to the website of the company where the actualy reply was displayed.

     

    PS. The page is located here: http://tntpost.nl/voorthuis/brieven-en-kaarten/tarieven/ (warning: [b]Dutch[/b]).



  • @pbean said:

    are specifically developed voor PC's
    You missed a spot.

    I'm curious as to how the IE specific code looked like. 



  •  I've taken to tagging IE-only websites as "malware" in delicious...



  •  TNT you say... I'm not surprised. I once had to develop a client to use an API they have to automatically send mail. Half-way through I realise that a certain field doesn't have any valid values for this country. This wouldn't be so bad except this field determines how the package is sent (overnight, delivery by 12 tomorrow, etc). Without it you can't use the API. So I call them and they tell me that they'll have to create codes for this country. A few months go by, during which the project is put on hold and we work on other stuff. I call again and they tell me that they're on it.

    3 years later I'm still waiting.



  •  @Zecc said:

    @pbean said:

    are specifically developed voor PC's
    You missed a spot.

    I'm curious as to how the IE specific code looked like. 

    Me too. It seems pretty difficult to screw that up.



  • @pbean said:

    @Zecc said:

    @pbean said:

    are specifically developed voor PC's
    You missed a spot.

    I'm curious as to how the IE specific code looked like. 

    Me too. It seems pretty difficult to screw that up.

    As you are the OP, can't you go get the code and post it here?



  • @belgariontheking said:

    @pbean said:

    @Zecc said:

    @pbean said:

    are specifically developed voor PC's
    You missed a spot.

    I'm curious as to how the IE specific code looked like. 

    Me too. It seems pretty difficult to screw that up.

    As you are the OP, can't you go get the code and post it here?
     

     Since I posted the link, you could as well. :-)

    I looked and it seems the code for the button works just fine, but the button itself is somehow screwed up so that it only activates when you click the upper border of the search button.



  • @pbean said:

    Since I posted the link, you could as well. :-)
    Oh. Since you had just mentioned the email with the link to your ticket, I thought the link was for your ticket.



  • @belgariontheking said:

    Oh. Since you had just mentioned the email with the link to your ticket, I thought the link was for your ticket.
    Same here.

    Looking at the page, the problem seems not to be the JavaScript, but the weird CSS.

    A right-floating relatively-positioned negative-margined element? Wah?



  • IE only is more common than it should be, but realistically 90%+ of people who don't use IE know how to fire up IE if the site won't work and unfortunately businesses figure that's good enough for the minority of the market to be inconvenienced if it makes it cheaper to build the site...

    Edit: Took out my reasoning, it was 100% wrong and dhromed was right :P



  • It's a CSS / browserquirk issue.

    The button is not clickable in anything other than IE because there's a div (the container of the little tariff table) on top of it.

    In IE, elements that are 100% transparent are also click-through. In other browsers, not.

    @fyjham said:

    the reason it's IE specific is because they put
    a span inside an anchor tag then made the anchor clickable which just
    don't work
     

    This is not a problem. Events bubble up by default, so the click on the SPAN will activate the event on its parent, the A.

     



  • @dhromed said:

    This is not a problem. Events bubble up by
    default, so the click on the SPAN will activate the event on its
    parent, the A.

    Yep, I looked and you were right. I decided that one after 5 minutes of little-sleep glancing and probably should've held off posting :P There is some elements that it won't bubble up to, now that I've checked span isn't one of them but I've never really tried a span inside an a so it seemed like the reason. I didn't realise the design was bad enough that a div was overlapping it, there didn't really seem to be anything nearby to justify causing it so I didn't even look ;)



  • @dhromed said:

    Events bubble up by default
    I've taken many computers apart, and put almost as many back together correctly, and I've never seen any bubbles.  or bugs.



  • @DOA said:

    3 years later I'm still waiting.
    Sounds similar to the urgent VPN connection with TNT's network I had to set up - only took 8 months from start to finish.



  • @belgariontheking said:

    @dhromed said:
    Events bubble up by default
    I've taken many computers apart, and put almost as many back together correctly, and I've never seen any bubbles.  or bugs.
    I guess he must be referring to the smoke.  As long as you don't let it out, everything should keep working.



  • @belgariontheking said:

    @dhromed said:

    Events bubble up by default
    I've taken many computers apart, and put almost as many back together correctly, and I've never seen any bubbles.  or bugs.

    I found a small snake in a computer once.  climbed in one of the pci slot openings on the back of the case.   



  • (warning: Dutch).

    Whew, thanks for the warning. I almost got some of it on me!



  • @halcyon1234 said:

     

    (warning: Dutch).

    Whew, thanks for the warning. I almost got some of it on me!

     

     Nou, dan zorg ik er toch gewoon voor dat je het al binnenkrijgt als je je e-mail leest (of dit draadje bekijkt). Eet mijn giftige taal!

    Oo, en veel succes iedereen verder, met de online vertalers enzo. Benieuwd wat die er van maken.

    Heb dat trouwens even uitgeprobeerd op de vertaler van google, niet veel soeps... (oftewel in het engels: "not much soup", yeah right)



  • okay, I'll take a stab at it:

     When you worked in support, you'd often get emails sent to you-- I think about their cable (ala television)?  They were illegable and muddled.

    Obviously, they were using online translators, though a few of them were done properly. (Or the translations were getting better over time?)

    And sometimes you'll even see in print or on websites people who have just used Google translate, which are wrong and they haven't even checked the results, which results in that common phrase becoming "not much soup". (har har).

     Am I close?  Or should I add "purple monkey dishwasher, bork bork bork"?

     

     

    @dtech said:

     Nou, dan zorg ik er toch gewoon voor dat je het al binnenkrijgt als je je e-mail leest (of dit draadje bekijkt). Eet mijn giftige taal!

    Oo, en veel succes iedereen verder, met de online vertalers enzo. Benieuwd wat die er van maken.

    Heb dat trouwens even uitgeprobeerd op de vertaler van google, niet veel soeps... (oftewel in het engels: "not much soup", yeah right)

     



  • Hoe komt het toch dat er zoveel Nederlanders hier zitten?

     I'll be nice:

    "Well, I'll make sure you get some of that in you if/when you read your email (or watch this thread). Eat my poisonous language!

    By the way, good luck everybody, with the online translators and so on. I'm curious what they make of it (=I'm curious how that works out).

    I've just tried that on the translator at Google, no good (or in English: "not much soup" (word-by-word translation for a common phrase))"

    (intentional rubbish translation, because it was already rubbish in Dutch :P Most of it is word-by-word translated)

     So, to all dutch people: go your gang, use the donkeys' bridge, we can take these people in the mailing.

     

     

    By the way, according to some Turkish master students,
    formal Dutch can be translated to (some form of) English by google
    translate. Even this peace of crap informal language can be translated better than the above try...

    Forgot something:

    "Vell, I'll meke-a soore-a yuoo get sume-a ooff thet in yuoo iff/vhee
    yuoo reed yuoor imeeel (oor vetch thees threed). Iet my pueesunuoos
    lungooege-a!
    By zee vey, guud loock iferybudy, veet zee oonleene-a trunsleturs und
    su oon. Bork bork bork! I'm cooreeuoos vhet zeey meke-a ooff it (=I'm
    cooreeuoos hoo thet vurks oooot).
    I'fe-a joost treeed thet oon zee trunsletur et Guugle-a, nu guud (oor
    in Ingleesh: "nut mooch suoop" (vurd-by-vurd trunsleshun fur a cummun
    phrese-a))"
    (intenshunel roobbeesh trunsleshun, becoose-a it ves elreedy roobbeesh
    in Dootch :P Must ooff it is vurd-by-vurd trunsleted) Su, tu ell dootch
    peuple-a: gu yuoor gung, use-a zee dunkeys' breedge-a, ve-a cun teke-a
    zeese-a peuple-a in zee meeeling.



  • @pbean said:

    But the surprise came when I pressed search: nothing happened. As a coder, I tried some tricks (pressing the Return key, selecting another option and the one I wanted again and try again) but nothing worked. So in a feat of brilliance I fired op Internet Explorer and copy-pasted the URL. Hey, it works! I tried some Chrome and Opera as well, but didn't work.

     

     oops.. I never noticed nothing happened. I was happily surprised that packages had got this cheap, so I underpaid at least one package.. never bothered to check wether it arrived..


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