For the chevrons to light up one by one as they're being dialled, every single stargate in the system that shares those symbols must also be lighting up one by one, until the address uses a symbol that isn't part of that particular gate's address, allowing them to drop out steadily until only the final, correct gate is left. That's insane. Gates would be starting to connect all over the place, all the time. There is no way for the final-destination gate to know that it's the one being dialled until the address is complete, at which point, it connects. It's just like dialling a phone. Only the person punching in the number hears the beeps for each one -- the other phone doesn't go " beep beep beep beep beep beep beep RING" , it simply rings when the complete signal reaches it.
I understood the process as running something like this. Let's use SGA as an example
1. Someone in Atlantis goes "Lets go to $world$ using $address$!" Everyone cheers.
2. They dial the address. The chevrons on the funky Atlantis gate light up one by one as they are entered. Everyone cheers
3. On $world$, nothing happens yet.
4. On Atlantis gate, all the chevrons are
5. On $world$, the $world$gate chevrons light up one by one - in my little geeky mind, the Gate network is checking back each chevron. "Are you sure you want this chevron? What about this one? And this one?" When all chevrons are lit on the $world$gate, it means the full address has been verified by the network and is ready to connect. The Ascended would cheer their own cleverness at this moment if they had vocal cords.
6. A worm hole goes from Atlantis to $world$, with a pretty splash on the other side. Everyone cheers.
7. The episode can then proceed with a minimum of technobabble. The audience cheers then goes to argue nitpicks.
So rather than each individual chevron lighting up together, its CODE entered one by one, transmitted as a block, verified one by one at the destination gate, THEN the wormhole engages.
Does that make sense within the canon-confines of what they show us? Thoughts? Arguments? Better ideas? Cheering?