Decimal commas and stupid inline editing


I have (probably as 90 % of world population, that use decimal commas instead of dots as in US) problem with Balsamiq, that you are using commas as value separator. So everytime i am writing some decimal values, i have tu use , instead of ,.
Solution: E.g. in Excel, we are using semicolon instead of commas as function variable separator. And there is simple setting in Excel options - Use system separators (decimal and thousand), with option to overwrite it with a different one. Similary it could work in Balsamiq - if the system decimal separator would be comma, you would use semicolon and give option to overwrite this behaviour. Internaly you would always store it e.g. as comma as today, but on editing of the element you would convert , to ; and vice versa

And even one more relevant improvement - you are always trying to use comma separator, if this is one-line element (e.g. horizontal menu). Why? It would be much easier to edit, if you would use multiline edit with newline as separator, so there would be no problem with commas at all (the problem would still be in e.g. table element, but this could be solved as described above)


So commas are in kind of a weird place when it comes to how they are used in vocabulary.

The only thing that they are universally used for is to separate elements in a sentence. That’s why we decided to use them to separate elements in our inline text editing.

The semi-colon is a good idea, and I will pass that along to our dev team. My worry would be that it would take a lot of re-education to our existing users. Definitely something to talk about, though, as we don’t want to create pain for folks.

I’m sorry again for the frustration with this @Tomas_Kapler, but the discussion is really good, so I hope you keep bringing stuff like this our attention. It will help us make things better.


Brendan, do not worry, i am not frustrated, sorry if tone of my posts seems so, that’s just a way i express my ideas :slight_smile: Balsamiq is even with all its usability problems still far the best on the market (and i am experimenting with everything what i find).

About the re-education - if there would be that “use semicolon” check in options, it would not be a problem, as everyone would be able to use what he wants. And internaly you can use whatever you want, even something with no chance for any conflict (e.g. \t, which is otherwise impossible to type) and just convert it on the fly on display/edit.

And as i have written in my initial post - for most of the elements you can solve it simply by using multiline edit instead of single line. It would allow also to join the functionality of several elements - e.g. you would not need vertical/horizontal menu and vertical/horizontal tabs as separate elements, you would have just Menu and Tab elements, with the same vertical edit screen, and orientation of the menu would be just an option, similar to .nav-stacked class of nav component in bootstrap (btw it would be great, if balsamiq would have all components and its settings as they are in bootstrap, that covers needs of 90 % of websites)