The Usability Post
Thoughts on design and user experience by Dmitry Fadeyev

Issues with Form Field Placeholders

Katie Sherwin from Nielsen Norman Group outlines a series of issues with using placeholder text in form fields. Some of the key problems include: short-term memory strain, the inability to check if you’ve filled in the right fields correctly, confusing placeholders for filled in fields and the increased difficulty of reading low-contrast light gray text that is typically used to style placeholders. Additionally, there are accessibility issues, such as some screen readers not being able to read placeholder text.

Certainly food for though if you’re thinking about implementing this UI pattern, though it makes me wonder if most of these issues can’t be solved using the adaptive placeholder design.

“For even falsehood, uttered by the tongue of man, seemed like truth and light before this hopelessly-deaf and unresponsive silence.”

My new book: a translation of selected short stories by Leonid Andreyev, the father of Russian Expressionism from the Silver Age of Russian literature. A piercing, pitiless glance into the heart of the human condition.

☛ Read online

Further Reading

Proust wrote that the true voyage of discovery is not to visit strange lands, but to possess other eyes, to behold a hundred universes that each of them beholds. Thus, in the words of Ruskin, what good books give us is not mere knowledge, but sight.

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