Graphical User Interface design (GUI-design for short) refers to the visual aspect of designing computers, appliances, machines, mobile communication devices, software applications, and websites with the focus on the user's experience and interaction. Generally refers to digital rather than physical ...

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249
votes
17answers
16k views

What explains the current shift from glossy UIs to matte UIs?

I've noticed an interesting phenomenon in the user interfaces of many famous applications, they're moving away from the glossy complex to a more dull and bare minimum design. Why the sudden change? ...
182
votes
15answers
23k views

Are carousels effective?

Go to just about any eCommerce site and the homepage is nearly guaranteed to feature a carousel - an auto-rotating panel, usually with some sort of small navigation, usually highlighting new product ...
90
votes
9answers
10k views

Why might right aligned field labels be better?

For the longest time, I've used left-aligned labels in my forms, like this: I did this because I thought having the labels left aligned made it easier for readers to scan the list of labels. ...
54
votes
11answers
5k views

What kind of design do users like the most at the time of this question, 'Flat' or 'Skeuomorphic'?

I have read multiple articles on-line that say that the era of Skeuomorphic design on the web is over, and that a new era of so-called 'flat design' is now the new thing for developers, but do users ...
53
votes
13answers
3k views

Best UI to allow expert users to enter an ip address? (IPv4)

I am working on a web application which requires users to enter an IPv4 address (in dotted-quad decimal notation) for most of the primary tasks they need to perform. Our primary target "user" is a ...
47
votes
8answers
41k views

What is this side menu called that can be found in many multi-touch apps, and where does it originate from?

It can be found for example in the YouTube and Facebook app.
43
votes
11answers
3k views

Is there a better character than the asterisk to indicate a modified document?

In Windows applications it seems to be a common way to indicate modified, unsaved documents with an asterisk * character. E.g. this is how Visual Studio .NET 2012 indicates a modified document: ...
42
votes
9answers
4k views

How can I make monochrome icons work?

My company has just implemented a monochrome icon theme in an attempt to transition to a more "modern" interface. Feedback from the first round of user testing has been mixed: Almost everybody ...
42
votes
7answers
2k views

How should you show that an accordion is expanded?

When you have an accordion, you need some way of showing the current state is expanded. There are a number of different ways of handling this, and each is used by a number of respected websites and ...
40
votes
6answers
3k views

How can I highlight errors when bright red is the main color of the brand?

I'm working on a mobile website for a client whose main brand color is red. The website header and headings are all red. CTA buttons are red too. How can I effectively separate errors (mostly in form ...
37
votes
7answers
2k views

Could scaring users be good UX?

I work on an application that's designed to be usable by new users, but has a lot of complicated configuration for advanced users. Our approach to keeping users away from delicate settings is to make ...
36
votes
6answers
3k views

With infinite scrolling, do scrollbars still make sense?

I noticed this today on Google Plus: Virtual Scrollbar in a Google+ Gallery This is a virtual scrollbar, as opposed to native scrollbars everyone on Windows or pre-Lion OS X does know. Now this ...
34
votes
6answers
3k views

Why is tree representation of data becoming unpopular?

I'm asking not about professional software like IDE's, but about OS GUI and web interfaces. A few years ago there was File manager in Windows, Gopher and other interfaces and data models like this. ...
33
votes
9answers
4k views

What are the drawbacks of designing a Windows application to look like a Mac application?

I'm working with a company whose product is a Microsoft Windows application. As the UI/UX designer (and as a Mac user) I want to redesign the application so it is more visually appealing. Are there ...
33
votes
6answers
4k views

Why do websites not use entire width of browser?

What reasons might a website not use the entire width of the browser, like Gmail does? For example, StackOverflow does not use the entire width — it has left and right margins. This means the ...
32
votes
8answers
6k views

What is the purpose of having a clock on the desktop?

It is common for a clock to be placed somewhere on the desktop - in Windows, it is on the taskbar. But why do designers do this? It makes sense on a phone, for example, but when on a computer, I ...
32
votes
2answers
6k views

What is the significance of the three dots “…” on menus and buttons and how to use them right?

Adding three dots after the title of items in a dropdown menu seems to be a common practice (as you can see on the picture of a drop down menu in Google Chrome). They generaly mean that there is ...
31
votes
9answers
6k views

Good reasons to use bad UI

I know you just read the title, take a deep breath. I'll explain. When should we make a conscious decision to retain poor UI, even if temporarily? Not because of budget or time constraints but ...
30
votes
4answers
2k views

Where should the GUI light source come from?

I know that historically the light source on GUIs is in the upper left, casting a shadow on the bottom-right of buttons and the upper left of fields. Now, I see some places (like Apple) use a top ...
26
votes
12answers
2k views

Why are enterprise application UI boring/dull

I work for a big software company, and i have access to a lot of enterprise now and then . I have also worked on a few application myself . What i have noted that , these applications have fantastic ...
25
votes
5answers
2k views

Why aren't Gmail-like “on-page” dialogs more popular UI solutions?

A few months ago, Gmail gave us the choice to switch to a new UI, with many new features (...) including an "on-page-docked" window. I personally find this piece of UI very useful as it allows users ...
25
votes
3answers
1k views

What to do when a page's content doesn't fill up enough of a fixed area?

An application has a fixed size, i.e 800x600 px. However, a problem I often run in to is that the page's content isn't enough. It's simply too little content on a big area. Consider the mockup below, ...
24
votes
5answers
24k views

Best Practices for UI design on Android (Usability/UX) [closed]

I'm switching for web development to Android development. I know some things about web usability and I see that UX is too often left behind on Android from my I experience with it. As the interaction ...
23
votes
9answers
4k views

Why are graphical user interfaces considered user-friendly?

Why are clients usually attracted to graphical user interfaces? Why aren't more applications developed using a console (command line / terminal) interface?
23
votes
8answers
2k views

When a star-rating is right-aligned, should I fill the stars from right as well?

When building graphics for an app, I have right-aligned a rating from 1 to three stars. Being mainly a designer, my gut told me to fill the stars from right to left. So, i.e. empty empty filled for a ...
22
votes
6answers
2k views

Next vs. Continue

Is there any situation in which either Next vs. Continue would be more appropriate to use? I'm working on an application that has many, many different forms (data entry), and have been using the word ...
21
votes
10answers
3k views

What's the least confusing UI for offering to either enter a URL or upload a file?

I have a simple form where a user may contribute a link or upload a document adding a title and optionally some notes. What's the best UI for allowing for either a URL or a file (but not both)?
21
votes
6answers
915 views

Three state button for a medical chart

I am working on UI design for a new web based medical charting system. The users are used to charting on paper where they circle a symptom if it is present, cross it out if it is absent, and don't ...
21
votes
6answers
3k views

Are custom scroll bars easier to use or do they just look “nice”?

I've noticed that a lot of webapps have started using custom scroll bars. A few examples include Facebook, Trello, Google Docs, and Twitter. I'm sure you can think of some more: How do these types ...
21
votes
3answers
741 views

Is it a bad idea to have two progress bars in one dialog?

Discussing with my team-mates this morning but we're not sure which one is the best way. Scenario: When users select a single document to process, they will see a progress bar and text displaying its ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Should a save button save information that is not on screen?

My app is used to edit email templates. As you probably know, emails can have a text AND html version. Below is the UI I came up with. My initial thought was 'only save what you can see', so when you ...
19
votes
8answers
1k views

Where can I find problems to challenge my UI design skills?

I'm still in the beginnings of my career as a programmer, and have always thought I was more interested in low-level back-end type stuff. However, having done a few projects lately on my own, I've ...
19
votes
7answers
934 views

Solving the “accidental confirm” problem with dialog boxes

The scenario is all too common: An application brings up a dialog box while you are typing, and you hit the space key before you even realize what's happening. The dialog is gone and you have no clue ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

Is there a visual glossary of (Windows) UI controls?

Some days it seems every member of my team calls each control by a different name. Is there a good resource, preferably with images, for what the official name of each control type is? I found a few ...
19
votes
5answers
904 views

Does tablet size affect which orientation users use?

Recently I was told by a developer that most 7 inch tablet users will, if given the choice (i.e the app supports both orientations), use the tablet in a portrait orientation and that a user with a 10 ...
18
votes
7answers
6k views

Hamburger menu icons - should they be on the left or right?

Hamburger menus (the three small horizontal bars: the new menu icon). Should they be on the right or left? I'm only thinking of mobile and tablet applications. The pattern I see the most is on the ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

Most intuitive multi-select component for the web

My target audience are users that are not familiar so much with computers so i try to simplify the UI elements in use as much as possible. For instance I try to avoid drop down menus and use big ...
16
votes
11answers
2k views

What's a good scroll bar equivalent for a spiral script?

One of my friends is writing a fictional story about a people who use a script that is read in a spiral from the inside out. They write on long coils of flexible material, and longer texts are fed ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

Good alternatives for replacing multiple nested modal dialogs?

Having a mature and good-selling Windows desktop application, we are focusing on improving the user experience for the next release. One thing that I try is to get rid of multiple nested modal dialog ...
16
votes
9answers
3k views

How does user interface design fit in a development process?

In a software development process where does the user interface design fit? If we take an agile approach for a small team (2 juniors, 2 seniors, a Team Leader and a web designer) what normally should ...
16
votes
4answers
691 views

Multiple choice forms with radio: Should the choices be arranged horizontally, vertically, or in a square?

My work involves designing the interface for quizzes taken by college students. When designing for quizzes, what would be the easiest arrangement to read for my users: horizontal, "square", or ...
16
votes
3answers
361 views

Tag-like UI element

There is a UI element that I have seen in several places, but in trying to find an implementation for it, I realized I don't know how to correctly refer to it. The element that I am thinking of is a ...
16
votes
4answers
19k views

Best UI for filtered search with many filtering options as opposed to single text field

What UI provides the best user experience when searching using many filters as opposed to a single text input. For example: I have 15 filters (all optional) that users can filter results by. The ...
15
votes
6answers
975 views

Is flashing red text a good idea for denoting an active alarm?

I'm working on a windows application that is showing the realtime status of a particular piece of equipment. While operating the equipment (via the application), two important values & labels are ...
15
votes
9answers
2k views

Scrollbar on the left

Is there a deep study that suggests to place a scrollbar on the right? Personally I move it to the left whenever it's possible (firefox allow this, as well as xterm and emacs). I know that placing a ...
15
votes
4answers
1k views

In GUI/UI design, why is the clock on the right?

I've been trying to design a new User Interface for the Desktop, while at it a friend has told me about his thoughts on UI design and we had a discussion about the placement of the "clock". In ...
15
votes
6answers
317 views

Is there a term/name for these labels?

Are there any conventional names for these informational labels?
15
votes
6answers
1k views

The use of tabs

I am working on redoing a clients application, which needs to be done for other reason, but one of the changes is to remove tabs. The application is, in essence, fronting data records, very basic. ...
15
votes
5answers
705 views

Emerging UI trend: comments in the margin - pros and cons?

Context: Irrespective of threaded-vs-unthreaded comments, I've noticed that a few sites have started to experiment with comments in the margin (as compared to comments above or below content in a ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

Blinking, bouncing and flashing elements

I'm responsible for the UI/UX in a software development company. During my absence, some developers decided to implement a "bounce" effect on a button of a website that they think should have more ...