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Thovtrup, Henrik and Jakob Nielsen


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Assessing the Usability of a User Interface Standard

User interface standards can be hard to use for developers. In a laboratory experiment, 26 students achieved only 71% compliance with a two page standard; many violations were due to influence from previous experience with non-standard systems. In a study of a real company's standard,developers were only able to find 4 of 12 deviations in a sample system, and three real products broke between 32% and 55% of the mandatory rules in the standard. Designers were found to rely heavily on the examples in the standard and their experience with other user interfaces.

Thovtrup, Henrik and Jakob Nielsen. Alertbox (1991). Articles>User Interface>Standards>Usability