they indeed were - including some incredibly klunky ones from early graphical adventures with verb list panes, inventory panes, compass rose panes, graphical pane and so on.
But I’m not concerned with the way it’s been used in IF before, I’m more concerned with how a modern day computer user casually messing around - and hopefully getting hooked to - with IF might wonder what to do next when a relic from seventies computer terminals might give no clue.
truth be told, this started out as a rant just because the text cursor next to > does not blink except when the user click on it in parchment. So, some people might really be missing that they should type something there, like they would in a chat program.
I’ve send a couple of links before, one to parser IF and the other to a cyoa and the result is almost always the same: people tend to comment on the cyoa. It might be that it is just easier to tap away links and choices in the cyoa, no doubt. But the fact that the parser IF usually generates no kind of response at all - either angry or I don’t like it - makes me fear that that > thing (without a cursor blinking) just gets completely over their heads.
when you look at text interfaces today, blinking is not always needed if the user already knows that you are to type something there: web forms, the URL bar, the text input at the bottom of a 2-pane chat program. But when it comes to text ending in >, I don’t suppose they get it.
I may be wrong and they all just hate parser IF with a passion and love cyoa instead…