Thursday, March 02, 2006

Designing Against a Degrading Experience

Great post discussing how users keep "greyed out" features around a cluttered up UI for fear of not being able to find them later when they are needed...

"I'm sure many of you have experienced being the "one who knows about computers." In social and family situations this often means having to help to fix, clean up, or otherwise restore a computer experience which has fallen into disrepair.

There are a million reasons software experiences can degrade: unintended installation of add-ins or spyware and seldom-used programs eating up disk space and memory (or launching on Windows startup) are just two of the popular ones at which people like to point fingers.

Office is not immune to the perils of a user experience which degrades over time. But in Office's case, it's not usually a spyware or a performance issue: it's the UI.

One of the fun parts of my job is going on site visits, in which I have a chance to watch people use Office in their actual work environment. You learn so much about how people interact with software by seeing them use it, in their cubicle or office, along with the other artifacts of their work: calendars, sticky notes, staplers, physical inboxes, piles of forms, etc."   continued ...   (Via Jensen Harris)

Consistent, uncluttered UI makes a happy user - User Interface Design, Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Ergonomics

Consistent, uncluttered UI makes a happy user


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