I get frustrated by the tiniest of problems. This mornings issue is with Microsoft Outlook and the way the messages it sends get formatted by other recipients. I can’t stand the extra line breaks that I see in GMail/Live/Hotmail when I send messages from Outlook 2007.
I write an email that looks like this:
And when someone gets the email in GMail, it looks like this:
Notice that there is extra space between the two lines? That little extra paragraph break is driving me mad. I can’t figure out how to tell Outlook not to wrap each line in HTML <p>aragraphs.
It’s interesting to note that this isn’t a problem when you send mail from Outlook to Outlook. But is in other mail clients, like Live Mail & Hotmail (both Microsoft products). The source of the issue appears to be that Outlook uses the MS Word HTML generation under the covers, which is known to be a bit janky.
The only options I’m aware of are to either (1) compose my messages in plain text or (2) get into the habit of pressing CTRL-Enter when I really want Outlook not to put in the extra space. Option (1) doesn’t really work, because any time you reply to a message Outlook will assume you want to use the format that the sender used which is 99% of the time HTML. Option (2) is annoying as hell, but a habit I’ll probably get into.
There is none that I’ve found in my hour or so of googleing and testing. Outlook doesn’t let you tweak the HTML that it generates, so I’m thinking that the only solution would be to write a VB script to scrub all emails before they’re sent and switch all of the <p>aragraph breaks to line breaks. That would be the most annoying of all workarounds, but one that’s likely possible. The question is if I’m annoyed enough to try to fix this? I’m annoyed enough to blog about it, so maybe I am annoyed enough to learn VB in Outlook?