Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Printer is Being Electrocuted!

The context of symbols can change meaning, even in the same application...

"When you receive Office 2007 Beta 2, you might look up at the Quick Access Toolbar and wonder why there's a lightening bolt overlaying the Print icon.

First thing to know: there have always been two versions of the Print command in Office. "Print" is the command which is typically on the File menu. Clicking this command brings up the Print dialog box in which you can specify print settings or cancel out if it's not what you intended.

On the Standard toolbar of Office 2003 applications is a command which shares an icon with normal Print but is actually different: "PrintDefault." This command immediately sends the document to your default printer without asking. You click the button and immediately paper starts coming out somewhere. This has functionality has posed some frustrating challenges over the last few years; I'll write about that in a coming article.

Anyway, to be consistent about exposing all of the print functionality in one place, we show both the Print and PrintDefault items in the Print category of the Office Button. Print is called "Print" and PrintDefault is called "Quick Print." In order to make them have distinct icons, a lightening bolt was added to Quick Print to make it seem... well, I guess lightening quick."   continued ...   (Via Jensen Harris)

Auto print? Or broken print? - User Interface Design, Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Ergonomics

Auto print? Or broken print?


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