User interface (UI) patterns have the potential to make software development more efficient. The prospect of such efficiency gains has led to interest in user interface (UI) patterns by individuals and organizations looking for ways to increase quality while at the same time reducing the costs associated with software development.
Let's say you've got a clear set of requirements; the users have been defined, the features are associated with user tasks, marketing has done a competitive analysis and everything is good to go. Now what?
This work is a culmination of years of research to develop an effective in-vehicle countermeasure to drowsy driving. Previous work resulted in an independently validated measure of drowsiness that was then incorporated into a drowsy-driver prototype monitor. The goal of this project was to develop an associated drowsy-driver interface that enabled effective, user-centered interactions with the underlying system. A multidisciplinary team designed a new drowsy-driver interface and introduced smart user interactions through a careful participatory design process that included both design experts and commercial motor vehicle drivers. It is hoped that this effort and subsequent field trials will result in a reliable, smart system that convinces drivers that they are driving in an unsafe condition and to make a wise choice--stop and rest.
Virtual reality and game technology can be used in the technical communication classrooms and the workplace as well as the laboratory. Because our communication into the 21st century will take many "technical" forms, the technology, creativity, degree of interaction, and multimedia designs of virtual reality simulations should become part of our communication technology in the 1990s. Although hypertext, hypermedia, computer-aided design (CAD), and multimedia, multisensory training applications are becoming more common in the workplace, the concept of virtual reality has seldom been translated into practical applications that require business and technical communicators to have special skills. As well, advances in holographic information create exciting new educational designs for the future.
To better manage interactions with such large datasets, we’ve incorporated the concept of views, in the same way that Microsoft Outlook and SQL Builder use them. However, my initial usability testing has found that the concept of views is escaping most people, and I think it often boils down to the term itself. Even if I show users what the software does—and they pretty much always like it when they see it—they still often cannot get over the initial hurdle of the naming convention.
As Agile gains momentum as a development approach of choice, documenting design becomes a challenge. Peter Gremett shows how using a wiki to capture your design is a great way to be adaptive as you build and deliver product to customers.
One of the more interesting tensions I have observed—since getting into user experience design about five years ago—is the almost sibling-rivalry tension between UX Designers and User Interface (UI) Developers. At the heart of the tension between them is the fact that most UI Developers consider themselves—and sometimes rightfully so—to be UI Designers. The coding part is like Picasso’s having to understand how to mix paint. It’s not the value they add, just the mechanics of delivering the creative concepts.
One of the more interesting tensions I have observed since getting into User Experience (UX) design about five years ago is the almost sibling-rivalry-like tension between UX designers and User Interface (UI) developers. At the heart of the tension is that most UI developers consider themselves (rightfully so) to be UI designers. The coding part is like Picasso having to understand how to mix paint; it's not the value-add, just the mechanics of delivering the creative concepts.
This paper describes how the User Centered Design team investigated customers’ out-of-the-box needs and validated the design of the out-of-the-box elements described in the previous paper “Designing the OOBE: A Case Study” by Lee Anne Kowalski in these Proceedings.
I normally focus on web site accessibility, but after one of my favorite video games of 2009 recently won an award for its consideration to disabled players, it got me thinking about the subject.
La visualización ambiental de información consiste en la recepción de información proveniente de objetos de nuestro entorno que cambian sus propiedades, color, olor, presión táctil, en función del estado de la información que monitorizan. Se abre un campo potencialmente importante para ellos.
Las pantallas de los ordenadores son como una ventana al ciberespacio, a menudo demasiado pequeñas y limitadas. Los dispositivos capaces de localizarse en el espacio personal del usuario ofrecen una ventana a espacios virtuales 3D en el que la combinación de movimiento e interacción abre nuevas posibilidades de visualización.
It's been two-and-a-half years since we started the Voting and Usability Project. This project started as we all realized with some horror that usability problems in our voting systems could affect the results of an election--effectively disenfranching some voters through the design of the ballot, as Susan King Roth put it in the report on her research. Since then, our interest has expanded into a more general interest in the usability of voting systems and usability professionals can help make voting systems more usable for everyone.
Good user interface design requires a marriage of technical communication, human factors, graphic design, and cognitive psychology. A good user interface designer (or visual designer) is a combination of writer and artist, therapist and engineer. But, one of the central skills in this fields is communication. The user interface is communication—it is the primary link between the person using the product and the actual code making the screens move and respond.
AJAX, rich Internet UIs, mashups, communities, and user-generated content often add more complexity than they're worth. They also divert design resources and prove (once again) that what's hyped is rarely what's most profitable.
The advent of World Wide Web authoring has led to a plethora of graphics rich web pages. But where's the beef? In addition to placing marketing information on a company's home page the strength of the web lies in its flexibility to link to corporate databases and processes running on a variety of machines, both web and non-web servers. Tasks such as, creating transaction systems for commerce, creating graphical user interfaces (GUIs) for legacy systems, and doing queries against corporate databases require the web designer to take into account more than HTML code and imagemaps. The heritage of interactive design for network-based solutions has helped interface designers understand how to apply their craft to create effective World Wide Web solutions.
To offset this sometimes irritating tendency to critique and redesign everything we see, I'd like to offer a selection of software that I consider to be truly well-designed. To avoid creating a list that is simply an expression of my personal taste (which of course it is, to some extent), I devised some criteria as necessary aspects of a well-designed software product.
With so much good advice available, and the need for user input being so much a matter of common sense, it seems fair to ask why usability issues are so common amongst websites and applications - even those which have invested significant resources in development. What is it that drives otherwise sensible organisations and businesses to build products and services that are counter-intuitive and actively annoying for many users? The answers to these questions are revealing, in the sense that they illustrate how easily usability can be subverted by alternative agendas. And they highlight the need for a user champion within the organisation, an individual outside any internal interest groups, and potentially the company itself, who acts as a corrective to the forces that can leave usability on the back burner. This list is not one of objections (no time, no money, etc.), most of which are spurious, but rather of explanations for apparently baffling decisions that are often taken without even thinking about the consequences.
A pretty interface doesn’t make an application or website. Even the early releases of Microsoft Vista looked amazing. The graphics, interface, and 'look' of the system were much more impressive than XP. But looks alone don’t make the package. It lacked in usability, creating error messages and not having a standard navigation schema. Users didn’t know if they were to click a button, an image, or text to complete their task. It is important to create a standardized and intuitive interface, as well as nice looking, so that users can navigate your site or application.