cover by Luke Wroblewski

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Chapter 1

The Design of Forms

Form Design Matters

The Impact of Form Design

Design Considerations

Forms suck. If you don’t believe me, try to find people who like filling them in. You may turn up an accountant who gets a rush when wrapping up a client’s tax return or perhaps a desk clerk who loves to tidy up office payroll. But for most of us, forms are just an annoyance. What we want to do is to vote, apply for a job, buy a book online, join a group, or get a rebate back from a recent purchase. Forms just stand in our way.

It doesn’t help that most forms are designed from the “inside out” instead of the “outside in.”[1] Usually inside of an organization or a computer database, a specific set of information has come to define a valid record ...

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