Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Tabs Are Our Friends

Can someone tell me why everyone in my office appears to be afraid of using the tab key? It's starting to annoy me greatly.

Every time I find myself editing a document that someone else created first, I notice a marked lack of the TAB key in favor of a slew of spaces. When using proportional fonts, this means that the text after these spaces can start at different places depending on what comes before or after the spaces. It makes documents look uneven, especially if you have a bunch of numbered paragraphs. Tabs, on the other hand, make things look more uniform by snapping the text to space on the page defined by its distance from the margin. Seriously now, is it so hard to avoid using six spaces as opposed to one TAB?

The person who keeps doing this is probably the same one who, for some reason, keeps resetting erasing the tab settings on the typewriter in the office so that whenever I have it set (e.g., so that I can get to the middle of an envelope using just one key instead of leaning on the space bar and watching where it stops), the tab setting (one measly tab setting!) is gone the next time I have to type out an envelope a few hours later. Oh, the joys of working in a small office where you have to do a bunch of the secretarial work on your own.

I'm a dork. And a hater. That's probably not a good combination.


ericorbit said...

the reason they dont use the TAB key: people are stupid.

Steve said...

You sound a lot like me... I like my shit just so, and if I find the person who keeps moving the desktop icons on one of the computers at work OUT OF ALPHABETICAL ORDER, I'm gonna break my foot off in their ass. (Do I sound anal-retentive to you? They think I am.)

Dennis! said...

Well, I'm glad I'm not the only one.

Eric: "People are stupid" is such a wonderful catch-all by which to live life, isn't it? Melissa would agree.

Steve: Dude, that does seem kinda anal. I know that sounds funny coming from me after what I just bitched about, but desktop icons in alphabetical order? LOL.

Jon said...

I'm guilty of not using the tab key on emails or on my blog, but I certainly do for anything work related. But, considering that so many people are totally incompitent these days, it's hardly surprising.

Dennis! said...

Jon: Well you can be forgiven for not using it on emails or blogs, since usually the TAB key doesn't translate well when emails or blog codes go between text and HTML or whatever language they're using. I just tend to start paragraphs at the margin. Besides, doesn't TAB usually result in moving the cursor to a mouse point instead? Anyway, I still wish the people in my office had a better grasp of the TAB key.

Chef Dean said...

A typewriter? Who the hell still uses a typewriter? ;-)

kat said...

holy crap, i am stuck with the exact same problem right now!!! maybe it's a DC-lawyer thing. either way, it's driving me INSANE.

Melissa said...

You're my new best friend!!

Dennis! said...

Dean: Mostly for filling out forms. And for envelopes, for me, because it's a pain in my ass to feed envelopes into my printer.

Kat: I don't know if I'm happy to know that I'm not the only one whose this frustrated by this, or sad to think that there's an epidemic out there of people who have no idea how to use the TAB key.

anne said...

Thank you.
I've been accused of looking and sounding dangerously psychotic when editing documents. And it's not only tabs with me. Double-spacing tends to drive me up the walls. Etc. Etc. Etc.
Glad to know there are a few of us.