I am using a project of mine since with some helping default value(s) / masks. Notably, I set date mask (YYYY-MM-DD) in column(s) where the Date string exists in the Header string (ISO 8601).
The more I use it (as a user, not a developer) the more I have mixed feelings about it.
In the paper, this is an excellent idea and I love my implementation (the auto part). This allows me to avoid letters in my dates fields, but this add troubles (and beeps); read below.
a. If you made an error in the Year or Month fields, you can only change one digit at a time (or must clear all the string and retype the whole date),
b. I have memory troubles, so sometimes I want to write MM-DD and add the year (YYYY) after: impossible, the program reject it).
c. If I import (of any way: load from file or process a Paste as is, I am able to have anything in a Date field. In that case, I can only delete / cut the whole offending data (I cannot remove a part of it like cut a second date, then remove the remainding offending data).
There certainly is more bad things, but I cannot recall them right now.
The (Xojo) and/or my actual implementation (mask only) does not avoid erroneous dates just like:
and so on.
The pro for this feature is the automatic ‘-’ addition, the help in having a better shaped date column (dates colums), only digits (most of the time)
Edit: I only have to change the Column string (Date --> Dat) to disconnect the feature", either temporary or definitely if I have massive changes to do in the date(s) column(s).
Yes, it is a design implementation question; and it may be my fault, I may have to be more zen than (my) usual I cry too often when I use this software against this yoke. But I love this feature The motto here is When you cannot make your mind on a subject, ask people what is their feeling about it.
What I ask you with this Conversation is: what is your feeling ?
Use default help or let the user do its stuff ?