program installed on user's machine as opposed to a program that runs remotely and is accessed via an internet browser.

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5
votes
3answers
356 views

Managing multiple windows in one application

I am developing a desktop application to create, arrange and read blocs of sounds, via a grid interface like this : Each bloc of sound is of different nature and has its own panel to control its ...
5
votes
4answers
642 views

Software startup screens [closed]

I know there is advice (and very good advice at that) to generally not have startup/welcome screens in software. Our software I think has a legitimate need for one, our free download is served from ...
5
votes
3answers
344 views

Menu organization : conventional or domain-specific?

I'm building a desktop application that is a tool to mount some very domain-specific graphic structures that in the tool's context are called "sequences" (it's not important here I guess). To help ...
5
votes
2answers
645 views

UI pattern for showing progress of concurrent tasks?

This is in the context of a desktop application. Typically if you fire off a request to some back end server then it is nice to be able to show some sort of progress indicator in say the status with ...
5
votes
2answers
657 views

User interface for a “mapping” table

I have the following problem. I need to provide an interface for users inserting/editing "mappings" in a database. A mapping is a record as such: [Field A, Field B, Field C] --maps to--> [Field X, ...
5
votes
5answers
280 views

Scaling an Address Form on Resize

My application has a form for filling in the names and addresses of a donor. Each donor gets a closable tab and each tab has an address form. The problem is that the application runs in a regular ...
5
votes
3answers
897 views

Reasonable webpage file size

What sort of file size is currently reasonable for a webpage? Considering a responsive design being served to both a desktop with a high-bandwidth connection and a slow connection mobile device.
5
votes
3answers
342 views

Accessibility for non-web desktop applications

For web-applications I'm used to using WCAG 2.0 as a specification to provide to developers and 3rd parties who are developing websites to use as a guide. I now have a 3rd party supplying a Windows ...
5
votes
4answers
777 views

How to handle Desktop Application frame sizing/scaling

I am working on a new project which is focused on a desktop application for users. I am looking to find out more information, answers, best practices when it comes to handling sizing and scaling with ...
5
votes
3answers
396 views

Modal popup position

Being a Mac OS X user, I've implemented a popup engine which slides from top (transition is about 300 ms, see video) and stays hooked to the top. Most people (all developers at the moment) say ...
5
votes
3answers
446 views

Usability of window docking

I'm working on a WPF desktop application. A stakeholder requested window docking (like Visual Studio 2010) for managing multiple windows inside the application. This option makes sense for the design ...
5
votes
2answers
527 views

Best layout for lots of user input elements?

I have an application that presents a question/answer form to the user. It was mandated that the form look as close to the paper form as possible. The paper form was built in a spreadsheet as two ...
5
votes
1answer
378 views

What is the best way to display per-tab commands or actions?

I am working on a multiple document interface Windows application. We're using tabs to represent open documents for editing. I have three levels of possible commands: Global Per-tab Per-sub-tab ...
4
votes
7answers
439 views

Is it good to make different website for Desktop and iPad?

Is it good to make different website for Desktop and iPad? or same site is more better?
4
votes
4answers
298 views

Software UI: presentation and availability of optional information

I want to make the user of my software program feel comfortable with the new concepts being put before them. As part of this approach I have adopted the "information button" concept for most of the ...
4
votes
4answers
456 views

Should a desktop app open by default in fullscreen mode?

I'm currently building a multi platform desktop app. Should the app open by default in fullscreen mode?
4
votes
4answers
172 views

Why do programs ask the user to configure auto-update when first run?

Yesterday, I was installing F.lux on my Mac (cool-looking program by the way), and when I ran it, it asked me if I wanted the program to automatically update. How am I (or any average user) supposed ...
4
votes
4answers
235 views

How do I deal with users that I know are pirating my software? [closed]

I have made a product and did something similar to Game Dev Tycoon recently with my software (although it wasn't a game), where I seeded my own "cracked" (I just removed the licence checker) software, ...
4
votes
2answers
265 views

Should I Stop Using A Currency Symbol?

I'm upgrading a desktop application that currently displays the currency symbol anytime money values are displayed or printed. A friend of my from the UK told me "Whenever British people see software ...
4
votes
5answers
611 views

What are the benefits to software that has no installation wizard?

There are some Windows software packages out there (ie Eclipse, VLC prior to its current version) that do not rely on an installation wizard. Instead of using a wizard there is simply a folder with ...
4
votes
2answers
152 views

Log add to top or bottom

In my WPF (Windows Presentation Foundation) application I have a log that display important events in the application. I'm unsure where to add new events? Or in other words, how should I sort the ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

CRUD Desktop Best Practice

I always use this design for CRUD Desktop Form: Is it a good design for a CRUD Form? Do you have any suggestions for a better crud desktop form?
4
votes
6answers
615 views

Good example of a Keyboard Shortcut Manager implementation [closed]

I am implementing a keyboard shortcut manager in which the user can assign shortcut keys to global (or contextual) commands in a Windows desktop application. Note that the application has load of ...
4
votes
2answers
156 views

Change button for color input modes

I have this SWT widget (color picker) with label: By pressing the star button, color picker field transforms into code field, where you can write code: I am not satisfied with this "star ...
4
votes
3answers
374 views

Multiple instances of a Property Editor

I am designing an application in which several kind of user objects have properties. When clicking an object, the properties of the object would be shown in a pane similar to the Properties pane in ...
4
votes
1answer
182 views

Disabled input fields vs plain text

in this question (How do I choose between disabled input fields and plain text for a read only view?) the problem has been discussed for web. Do these answers also apply for desktop apps? I have this ...
4
votes
2answers
130 views

confusing software-install flow for web-app

I am working on a web-app that has an application to listen to audio. The problem is the playback software requires another piece of software just for the items to be placed on the playback software. ...
4
votes
3answers
116 views

Settings dialog with multiple tabs: same options on two different tabs?

I am designing a settings dialog with multiple tabs for our desktop application. There is a particular (small) group of options that is applicable to two separate tabs in the settings dialog. I ...
4
votes
4answers
181 views

Other solution than Wizard to set up complex object?

I'm prototyping an application that manipulate complex object (4 tabs of settings, with a total of 30 different parameters). The software can suggest (by default value) almost all of theses parameter ...
4
votes
1answer
180 views

What is the best way to handle mobile notifications with desktop clients?

I don't have an application that I'm currently working on, but issues I have both heard from others and experienced myself got me thinking. Some messengers (I have Hangouts in mind) have ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How to let the user add and edit items in a ComboBox? (WinForms)

In my WinForms application there is a ComboBox with default values. The user should be able to add items to the ComboBox or rename existing items. I want the design to be simplistic. This was my ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

Why doesn't eclipse have an installer?

After all these years in development, the lack of an installer for Eclipse might indicate some relevant reasoning from the developers. Are there any benefits for its users from not having an ...
3
votes
6answers
471 views

How can I improve the perceived performance of a desktop application?

We've build quite a 'large' and regrettably slow windows application for various financial planning business steps. I'm currently trying to improve the performance of the application by slowly ...
3
votes
3answers
548 views

Should I redesign my desktop application so it looks and acts like a website?

I'm in the process of redesigning one of my older desktop applications. The original design I did was based on a 640 X 480 screen. Times have changed and there several different screen resolutions ...
3
votes
2answers
165 views

How best to handle a popup gaining focus in the middle of the user typing?

Often I'll set some process off, then change focus to another program and be typing away in a textbox (for example), when the first thing pops up into view, maybe with a Yes / No box which I'd then ...
3
votes
5answers
271 views

Can text area be used as error/warning/notification output?

Problem. While developing an enterprise application I faced a problem of communicating various error/warning/notification messages to the user while they are filling out some form or performing other ...
3
votes
4answers
620 views

A Web Enabled Desktop App

So you know how the whole web 2.0 moment is about moving native desktop software to the cloud in the form of web applications, with UI being rendered through a web browser, data being pushed through ...
3
votes
3answers
126 views

Saving multiple files on program close

I have a Windows desktop application that can handle multiple files open on one canvas (in one instance of the program). You can modify and save each file individually, or all in one go. If a user ...
3
votes
4answers
665 views

Keyboard shortcut design methodology (for keyboard and touch screen)

What sort of methodologies should I employ to choose which letters and shifting keys to assign to different functions? Is underlining the accelerator letter the best practice, or should I spell out ...
3
votes
3answers
170 views

Is it better to use generic icons for 3rd party branded software or system specific icons?

I am developing a program that saves Word documents. We develop on Mac OSX (in a Virtual Machine) and as such the Word Icon we have used is the Mac-specific word icon (which makes no sense when ...
3
votes
4answers
190 views

Modals: “Cancel” styled as NOT a button, just a link [duplicate]

I've been working on some modals for an app, and I have done some research into how various confirmation/abort options are presented to the user in the footer of a modal. A user over on Dribbble ...
3
votes
3answers
282 views

Ask to show tutorial on first start?

The help system of my desktop application contains a "first steps" tutorial to introduce the general workflow and some terms. The tutorial can be found directly in the main menu and in the help ...
3
votes
2answers
110 views

How can I make a preference window that is good at tweaking theming settings?

I'm working on a file manager where the user can change text properties, the same way as in programming editors: font-family, font-size, antialiasing, background-color, foreground-color. Currently I ...
3
votes
2answers
94 views

“Important” Items Box versus Pinned Items

I am designing an application which has panel with a list of items. The items in the list can be re-ordered by drag and drop: The number of items in the list has the potential to be very large. In ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Responsive web design technique in desktop application?

What do you think about using responsive web design techniques in a desktop application? We need more space for large data and since all monitors today are widescreen, it could be good practice I ...
3
votes
2answers
201 views

Should I have one unified design between mobile and desktop?

With a website I'm building, I'm wondering if I should combine the experiences between platforms together. For example, I'm wondering if I should keep this for both mobile and desktop. Here are some ...
3
votes
3answers
152 views

What is the preferred way of creating a help section for applications?

I'm wondering if there is a modern and preferred approach of the manual format from the standpoint of users. I thought about making a CHM file but my manager told me that feels very "Windows 98ish" ...
3
votes
2answers
159 views

Displaying multiple large images at a time

I'm developing a desktop application which will show details of various types of aircraft. Previously, the application looked like this: When the user mouses over the image in the top right, arrows ...
3
votes
3answers
483 views

Using a ribbon as navigation

Every use of the ribbon I have seen so far single panel 'canvas' programs, where grouped functionality is in the ribbon. I have been doing some analysis on some back end software which my company ...
3
votes
2answers
495 views

How should I design an MS Access application for Excel users?

I work for a public health study, and I have been asked to help manage the workflow for an upcoming project. We will be choosing subjects, tracking our contact with them, interviewing them, placing ...