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The Future Shop website allows visitors to check in-store availability of its products. This is a great convenience… when it works. Unfortunately, it appears nobody checked to ensure this function works properly in all popular browsers. When I attempted to use it in my version Internet Explorer (IE7), it was an utterly confusing experience. The following is an outline of my journey.

First I found a product of interest:

Then I noted the “In-Store Availability” section (at the bottom of the screen shot above) and clicked to “Check Store Stock”. An accumulator opened:

Accumulators are highly efficient tools for making multiple selections, enabling easy changes. And you can easily see the subset of items you've selected. Personally, I love them. I do wonder, however, whether a typical shopper would be familiar with how they operate. And instructions were scant. But that's another issue. For the sake of this post, let's just assume everyone knows how to use accumulators.

I selected my province, then the two closest stores:

When I clicked “Complete”, a pop-up window opened. It displayed a legend of the availability icons:

However… nothing on the product page changed. The “In-Store Availability” section still offered to let me “Check Store Stock”, but my selected stores weren't listed and no availability icons appeared anywhere:

Wondering what I was missing, I explored further and found nothing. I tried a second time, and still came up with nothing. I wondered, “Is it broken, or am I just inept?”

I decided to try my luck in Firefox. Sure enough, the tool worked just fine and clearly indicated that my TV of choice was not available at my nearest locations:

Thanks Future Shop for saving me the trip. (I see there's one available in the local warehouse, so at least I can order one online if I wish.)

I have no idea why this tool wouldn't work on my version of IE7, but it's not just me. I asked a colleague to check it out on IE7 and he encountered the same result. Does it work for you?

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