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I've been browsing web from 1995. Been developing web pages since 1997. Actually got a paid job for doing web development in 1999. Does that make me qualified to comment on web usability? No. However, this section is devoted to several annoyances I've come across over time.

At work, I use a Windows 98TM machine. The browser I use mostly is Mozilla 0.9.7 and then Opera 6.0. At home, I use MandrakeTM LinuxTM 8.1 and Mozilla 0.9.7 is my favorite browser there. The features I look for most in a browser are:

  1. Good security. Now you know why I don't use IE.
  2. MDI interface. I love tabbed windows instead of multiple windows on the desktop.
  3. Easily change font sizes. There are quite a few idiotic designers out there with an affinity towards tiny and fancy fonts.
  4. Use my own stylesheet. Opera is really great with this.
  5. Zooming. Again, Opera is perfect.
  6. XHTML and CSS2 support.
That should give you some idea about what kind of platforms I use.

Top annoyances with web sites

These are things that completely turn me away from a site. In the order of descending order of annoyance. I'll soon write down one full page explaining each of these.

  1. Fixed font size for content. Quite a few funny sites are out there that just shift the positioning when you change the font size. Designers find it very cool to use   and that is what causes this usually.
  2. Popup windows. I've heard that when you popup a window, your visitor is still within your site! WRONG - your visitor quickly closes the popped up window and closes your site as well.
  3. Notices about what browser should I be using. Nicely worded warning messages are no substitute for lack of knowledge or willingness to follow standards.
  4. Breaks the back button of my browser.
  5. Popunder windows.
  6. Gateway page. Also fancifully called as interstitial.
  7. Slow to load.
  8. Shows a big advertisement where you normally expect content. Hotmail post-login page is a classic example.
  9. No alt tags for images. No width and height for images.
  10. Page made of elements coming from more than 4 sites.

From my Blog