For questions involving physical interfaces and interactions with "real world" objects.

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3
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3answers
742 views

What is the psychology behind road markings on lanes unaffected by speed cameras?

In the UK, speed cameras are usually accompanied by white striped lines on the road. I have always assumed that was a visual reminder to the motorist to "watch your speed- it's about to be checked". ...
3
votes
4answers
372 views

Steering Wheel: A Better Alternative? [closed]

In my opinion steering wheels for automobiles are a bad UX. They seem to be a control that are here for legacy reasons only and were not thought out in the context of new age technology. What would be ...
3
votes
2answers
266 views

Self Service Checkouts [closed]

I have, in the last few months, had to endure these hideous devices. I dislike them because I find them intensely patronising "Invalid item in bagging area" - no it isn't, it is the item you have just ...
3
votes
2answers
277 views

Is it really a bad thing to place an ad TV in front of the stairs?

We have the following room arrangement with a plan on a 40 inch TV mounted on the wall. download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups In this place people usually walk ...
3
votes
3answers
179 views

Is it a good idea to set a different signal for performing a u-turn?

For a long time, I wondered why is there not a separate indication to signify a u-turn, e.g. the rear lights would have two segments for flickering lights - one spaced on top of the other - as to ...
3
votes
1answer
438 views

Why are switches with light indicator common but outlets are not?

Wall mount light switches that have a neat light indicator that turns on when the switch is in "off" position are quite common. The purpose is to make finding the switch in the dark easier. Looks ...
3
votes
1answer
392 views

What color smartphone provides the best viewing experience?

This question is not as subjective as it sounds. Some background... Smartphones are commonly sold in black, white, silver, gold, and occasionally other colors. This is slightely dated (2013), but ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Why do electric fan knobs often place the highest setting right after the off position?

Electric fans are often controlled by a knob which the user turns to power the fan on or off, and control the fan's speed. On a lot of fans, the knob goes immediately from the off position to the ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

What is the best way to visually indicate correct plug alignment with socket (hardware)?

I currently have a problem where users are not correctly aligning a plug with a socket on an electrical device, leading to the plug being forced and the pins breaking. Users have suggested putting ...
3
votes
3answers
87 views

Why do folding stepladders have “not-a-step” steps?

Stepladders are typically labelled with a warning sticker that says: ⚠️ Danger: Do not stand on top step or, sometimes on the second-from-the-top step: ⚠️ Do not stand on or above this rung ...
2
votes
4answers
156 views

Why don't ATMs give you cash and card together

This is a follow-up of Why don't ATMs give you cash before your card? As shown in the linked question, whether an ATM give you cash first or card first will make users tend to forget the other. ...
2
votes
5answers
354 views

What is the best way to arrange chinese words on a menu [closed]

On a English menu , the food items can be arranged according to alphabetical order For a Chinese menu , there are no alphabet, only chinese characters , what would be alternative way best to ...
2
votes
4answers
526 views

Why is there a contradiction between red in software and in workshop hardware?

If we often use red in software to warn someone to think before interacting with something, like a delete button for example, why do serious power tools like circular bench saws have big red buttons ...
2
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2answers
299 views

Why do revolving doors rotate counterclockwise?

In all my life I have never seen a clockwise revolving door. How did counterclockwise become standard?
2
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3answers
188 views

How technical should airline pilots be?

I've been on a few flights recently, and idly listening to the captain talking to the passengers got me thinking: The captain's world is very different from the passengers' world. The captain has to ...
2
votes
2answers
88 views

Do large format books make a substantial improvement?

In the last several years I've seen larger format books alongside the familiar pocket paperbacks. Sometimes these are taller, sometimes they are wider, and sometimes both. I've wound up with these in ...
2
votes
3answers
242 views

Include UI Play/Pause buttons even though remote contains same functionality?

I'm working on a tvOS application that plays videos. On the bottom of the screen are a set of buttons I've created; Previous, Next, Pause, Play. Coming from an iOS background I'm so used to creating ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

What does “form factor” mean when referring to software?

I'm asking about when the term is used in context of software UI. I see Wikipedia articles related to hardware when Googling the term, but not sure what people mean when they refer to it in context ...
2
votes
3answers
664 views

What is the best user interface you have ever used/seen in real-world or real-world objects? [closed]

Exclude all web/mobile/application/computer software interfaces.
2
votes
6answers
308 views

Volume controls and mute order

I'm designing a remote control that only have Volume Up, Volume Down and Mute. But I can't decide where to put the mute button, in the middle or on the bottom. And what should I have for the Mute ...
2
votes
4answers
423 views

Thermostat UIs make me guess and think too hard

Every digital thermostat panel I've come across - just HORRENDOUS! There's a temperature display. Fine. There's an up and down arrow. First thought, it's to change the temperature. Good. There's the ...
2
votes
3answers
360 views

Is this a Mapping or Visibility issue?

I am thinking about whether my faucet has an issue with mapping, or visibility. I searched for the shower button for 5 minutes! Can you find the mechanism to turn on the shower (rather than have ...
2
votes
1answer
162 views

Is the label orientation on this product a message from the manufacturer?

I posted a question on the DIY SE site, and it was recommended that maybe a part of it would be better asked here. Consider these two outlets: The blue WR logo indicates that the outlet is ...
2
votes
4answers
132 views

Tracking what users are drawing on a piece of paper in real time

As part of our research in an HCI project, we need to track what users are drawing on pieces of paper in real time. Due to some requirements, we cannot replace the paper with anything digital. What we ...
2
votes
3answers
529 views

Is there a standard for the positioning of the elevator control buttons?

I've always wondered why elevator control buttons are found where they are. For example, the following image shows the elevator control buttons positioned on the right side. The way I see it, ...
2
votes
3answers
313 views

UI for dimming light

What is the best / natural UI (User Interface) for dimming multiple lighting zones (LEDs) using a microcontroller? Here is what I have thought so far Use rotary encoder to up/dn the brightness Use ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Where are the most optimal places to put laptop speakers?

I got one of these computers for Christmas. Overall, I thought it was a pretty average laptop.... ...except for one thing, the speakers. The speakers are placed at the lower left and right hand ...
2
votes
2answers
376 views

Wireframing hardware dashboards/control panels - best practice

For an upcoming customer project, I will be dealing with control center UI, including visualization on-screen software, but also hardware control panels and dashboards. The project emphasizes on ...
2
votes
3answers
191 views

Laptop usability design flaw from a big corporation

A few months ago I wanted a new laptop, so I ordered it from a big brand considering its solid features (like core-i3, 4 gigs of RAM, etc.). The laptop is perfect and runs well, but it has a small but ...
2
votes
2answers
422 views

public transit bus stop and door buttons

Not directly software related, I wonder about UX design in public transit busses. In Germany, some time ago there was a simple system in public transit busses: If the bus was quite empty, and no one ...
2
votes
1answer
219 views

Do you know any good source for human-robot interactions?

"In most cases, user experience design (UX or UXD or UED) fully encompasses traditional human-computer interaction (HCI) design, and extends it by addressing all aspects of a product or service as ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Method for usability testing of physical products

I am looking for a methodology for interaction testing of a physical product / interface. I am thinking something like expert testing (Heuristics) but just not for digital interfaces. Are there any ...
2
votes
1answer
125 views

How to make microwaves meals easier to empty [closed]

There seems to be a problem with the common way to deliver a microwave meal. From a flat, compartmentalised tray contents must be tipped or spooned onto a plate in order to be eaten. If there are two ...
1
vote
1answer
125 views

How to avoid people from using the coffee spoon into the sugar jar? [closed]

Do you have any creative ideas how to avoid people using the coffee spoon into the sugar jar?
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5answers
712 views

Why to loosen always by rotating it counterclockwise and to tighten by rotating it clockwise?

For example: Screw / bolt Bottle design Why this intuition works for most people? Does it have anything to do with the right-hand rule?
1
vote
1answer
355 views

What is the purpose of jackets having small zipperless back pockets just below the neck?

I was a little bit surprised to find that my Bench-branded 100% polyester jacket had a little zipperless back pocket just below the neck, especially since placing something like keys there would make ...
1
vote
2answers
728 views

Designing UX for an In Vehicle Infotainment system

I am working on an In Vehicle Infotainment System. This is one particular use case I am finding difficult to think in terms of UX : There is an IVI system attached in car which can take commands ...
1
vote
2answers
317 views

Why are elevator doors always too small? [closed]

I noticed that elevator doors are always narrower than the compartment, so people get jammed up trying to exit. Why don't they just design elevator doors so they are wide enough for everyone to exit ...
1
vote
2answers
218 views

Newspaper design

Why hasn't the traditional newspaper design changed much in years? Wouldn't they be easier to hold and read if newspapers were smaller and more book-like? I am guessing that the newspapers are ...
1
vote
4answers
358 views

How to design a physical device?

I have an idea for a product startup. It is a wearable device with one functionality, around which I and my friend started to think. We are pretty sure that we can develop it with only this ...
1
vote
2answers
185 views

Optimising urinal use [closed]

When you visit a urinal (so one for the gents), you’ll find that where urinals are arranged in groups of 3, the middle urinal and floor are typically cleaner than those to either side. This stems from ...
1
vote
1answer
206 views

How does the projection-angle of road arrows change drivers' expectations of the appropriate speed in a curve?

Have any studies been conducted to decide the 'print angle' (anamorphic projection) of road signage? Are there any other expectations involved?
1
vote
1answer
207 views

Headlight and Indicators on the handlebar OR on the front panel of the Scooter that you drive?

There are 3 designs existing now: Headlight and indicator lights both on the handle. Headlight on the handle but indicator lights on the front panel. Headlight and indicator lights both on the front ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Applying research on the ‘signposting’ of categories in a system with a large number of different items - to a physical world environment

Does any body know of either: 1 / Any research which looks at the best ways to categorise and signpost items in a system with a large number of items ? (This could be in a standard software ...
1
vote
1answer
184 views

Best practices for hardware keyboard input on tablet

I'm creating a form Android tablet app that will be used connected to a physical keyboard. The goal is to help users quickly fill out forms while visiting our conference booth. The tablets will be ...
1
vote
2answers
219 views

How can airplane safety information cards be improved? [closed]

Consider the current safety information card aboard the American Airlines Boeing MD-80. It's a large, trifold brochure with four full-color pages of pictograms and one page of dense, small text ...
0
votes
2answers
243 views

Why is the groundfloor G on some lifts, and 1 on others?

The lift at my work for example, groundfloor is '1' and the next floor up is '2' and so on. Whereas other lifts, ground floor is 'G' and the next floor up is '1'. Is there a reason for this ...
0
votes
2answers
254 views

Is there a benefit from driving on one side of the road, while sitting in the other side of the car?

I've noticed that cars/automobiles manufactured for countries with right-hand traffic (where vehicles drive on the right hand side of the road) place the driver's seat on the left hand side of the car ...
0
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1answer
121 views

Is there a human advantage to painting heavy equipment (aka “baggers”) bright yellow?

Is it just branding, decoration, or is there an actual human-centered reason for it?
0
votes
1answer
279 views

Why do most public buses and trains have a uniform chair height? [closed]

Given that different people have different heights, there seems to be for myself no reason why every chair in a bus has the same height. There could be different rows with different height and in an ...