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Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

Copper Super Contributor
Posts: 97
Country: USA

Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

Possible defect.

Act! v20 Premium Update 3 & Update 4.  Tested on 3 separate computers, in both a production database & Act 2018 demo database. 

Computers tested on were Windows 7 & Windows 10, both 64-bit.

 

Issue: When an activity's details grow too large, editing becomes very difficult.  A window flickering - possibly due to an autosave? - results in poor user experience.

 

Steps to reproduce:

  1. Create new activity on Act! calendar
  2. In the details, paste a large amount of text data.  Here is a pastebin dump of some sample data from the customer that reported this to me.  
  3. Place the cursor anywhere near the top of the details, and begin editing.  Try adding line breaks, new characters, and backspacing in particular.  The text gets rapidly highlighted, jumps to the end, then back up to the cursor position... as if the program is autosaving the details as you type, and causing this to be uneditable.

Customer claims this was not happening on v18.0, as he has had this particular detail info rolling for a long time.  Even if I cut the amount of data in half, the flickering is still present.

 

Thank you in advance for any insight.

 

Twelve/Three Marketing, Inc.
Act! Certified Consultants
......Stephen Boulden
Twelve/Three Marketing, Inc.
P: 716.837.5727 x104
E: stephen@twelvethree.com
Administrator
Posts: 1,372
Country: United_Kingdom

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

Hi Stephen - I've tested this on v20 and can confirm that this issue seems to occur whenever the activity details become larger than a single page (whenever there is a scroll bar).

It's less noticeable at first as the 'flicker' is very quick - but the longer the details become the more obvious the flicker is. Every time a character is deleted or certain other actions are taken the window scrolls to the very bottom and back up, and selects then deselects the entire text.

This is definitely unintended behaviour - I'll get this escalated to the developers for further testing.
Copper Contributor
Posts: 35
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

[ Edited ]

Thank you, Jon.  Our company is experiencing this as well.  Please keep us posted, as it is difficult to edit the text while this is happening.

Platinum Elite Contributor
Posts: 6,808
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

The cause is easily explained. The details are stored in Rich Text Format (RTF) which uses embedded test based formatting information. Virtually every edit you make will cause the formatting and possibly the formatting encoding for the remainder of the document from the edit point.
Roy Laudenslager
ACT! Certified Consultant
ACT! Report Expert
Durkin Impact Report Designer
www.techbenders.com
royel@techbenders.com
541-343-8129
New Member
Posts: 2
Country: Canada

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

We get the same flickering behavior in activity details in version 20 update 7; every keystroke of ENTER or BACKSPACE takes 10 seconds. I have been in contact with support/chat/voice to get the issue resolved. It has apparently been escalated to the development group but I have no way of finding out if this is reality. I have been told it 'could' be done in the next update but 4 updates of v21 have come and gone and still nothing. Is there a way to find out IF and WHEN this will be resolved.

Copper Contributor
Posts: 8
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

 

 

 

When adding details to a meeting, I copy and paste info, and upon pasting, the text flickers from 9 to 11 point continuously and gives a NOT RESPONDING message, and ACT crashes.

 

I cleared old activities. (probably for nothing) Smiley Sad 

 

The text that I pasted had 843 characters and included links -is that is what is considered excessive amounts of text? 

Since I found this thread, I copied and pasted that text into notepad and that unformatted text went into the Details section with not problem. 

 

 

Act! Pro Version 21.0.295.0, Update 5

Local machine, no shared database.

Fyi, I have windows 7, and this is integrated with outlook 2016 if that matters.

 

Is there any update on this? 

Thank you. 

 

Copper Contributor
Posts: 35
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

I encourage everyone at our company to use Notepad to gather or type text, and then copy and paste that text into the Details field. I also recommend for anyone using Notepad to right-click on the Notepad shortcut and go to Properties, then put your cursor in the 'Shortcut key' field and push Ctrl-Alt-N to create a quick and easy shortcut for opening Notepad whenever you need it.  Shortcuts like this can be created for any program you use often, like Word (I use Ctrl-Alt-W) and Excel (I use Ctrl-Alt-E).

 

We used to paste PDFs directly in the Details field (not below in the Attachment area), but we thought that might be causing the editing to be even worse, so we stopped that practice.  The nice thing about it was, I could paste the original quote PDF with the initial quote details, and if there was a revision at a later date, we could also paste that PDF in the Details along with the revised quote details.  If the Details section didn't flicker or jump to different text sizes when it gets populated with a lot of text, then we could go back to pasting PDFs in the Details with worrying about performance issues.

Copper Contributor
Posts: 8
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

Thanks for your reply. 

I didn't realize you could do that with ctrl alt N, etc. Love that! 

Copper Contributor
Posts: 35
Country: USA

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

It is a great trick.  The only downside to using it with Microsoft programs is that they sometimes get wiped out when Microsoft installs Office updates, so you need to re-establish them if you want them back.  For most other programs, this works for as long as you have the program installed on your computer.

Highlighted
New Member
Posts: 2
Country: Canada

Re: Activity details 'flickering' when a lot of text is entered.

Although the workaround is fabulous, it does not resolve the issue. The flickering issue was identified in January 2017 and has yet to be resolved; ACT could have rewrote the whole ACT software code in that span of time!!

 

My users either have to:

 

waste time copying in and out of Notepad with the possibility of making copy/paste errors OR

 

...waste time waiting for the flicker to stop and the cursor to come back

 

After hundreds of fruitless attempts to resolve the issue with their support team, I was put in contact with a Customer Success and Onboarding Manager who again gave me no guarantees; the best date would maybe be May 2019, but not sure.  

 

In my 3 decade long IT career, I have never witnessed a software company respond in such a nonchalant and irresponsible fashion. 

 

When I call or chat with support, the first thing they say is: 'How can we help your business grow'...

 

I just want I paid for to work correctly.