Psychological principles as they relate to user interface and user experience design.

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362
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20answers
27k views

Why do people clear the screen multiple times when using a calculator?

I've noticed that most people when using a real or a virtual calculator, they hit the Clear button multiple times when clearing the screen (even though hitting it once is enough), so I started ...
41
votes
5answers
3k views

What research is there suggesting modal dialogs are disruptive?

It seems "Everyone" knows they're highly disruptive for many situations but often times clients don't. Particularly in desktop applications this form of dialog is often misused, often disrupting a ...
62
votes
9answers
3k views

How does Gamification change User Behavior?

On Location Based Applications the use of Gamification is essential. As you move along and check in you earn badges and points. Users also find themselves in a leader board, which most certainly ...
17
votes
4answers
579 views

Discovering new features

I work with a web-based platform with lots of data and various tools to view the data, perform analysis. Users are often impressed by one or two features and stick with them. The platform adds new ...
34
votes
9answers
3k views

Ratings: 3 stars vs 5 stars. Why 5?

It's the most common interface used to display votes is the “star rating system,” in which a particular number of points (often expressed as stars) is assigned to an item by each reviewer. We find ...
61
votes
10answers
5k views

Why are progress bars horizontal?

Question sparked by this discussion. Why are progress bars almost always presented as horizontal lines that increase from left to right? Is this the best method of indicating progress (and why)? And ...
16
votes
3answers
4k views

How many visually distinct colors can accurately be associated with a separated legend in a figure?

For charts and graphs it's a relatively common question by programmers to want to procedurally generate an arbitrary number of colors that are visually distinct. Various research (or educated ...
4
votes
1answer
153 views

The effect of showing “wizard” style steps in a multistep process

I'm approaching this from the context of a user onboarding workflow. Specifically I'm looking for references to research that discuss what effect displaying "wizard" steps actually has on user ...
45
votes
13answers
12k views

Why don't users want to see adverts relating to products/services they might be interested in?

As we all know, Google's content display network, as well as many other successful setups rely on delivering targeted adverts to users to increase the chances of adverts falling in front of the ...
16
votes
7answers
3k views

The psychology of everyday shapes

We know a lot about colours and how they affect people, but what do we know about shapes? When choosing icons or logos, how do the shapes in them affect their perception? Does anyone know of any ...
92
votes
3answers
5k views

Psychology behind $0.99 for paid apps, but $1.00 for donation apps?

I've noticed a trend (at least on the Google Play store) of application prices ending in x.99, while 'donation' apps usually end on the dollar. I see the reasoning behind the psychology that makes a ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Is user centered design only about hygiene factors?

There is one thing that bothers me about UX-design. One of the shortcomings of a user centered design approach, is that it only focuses on existing needs and not on new revolutionary ideas. For ...
34
votes
5answers
2k views

Do users trust shortened URLs?

I've got some problems with shortened URLs personally; they're really easy to create and not descriptive, so it's fairly easy to make them link to malware. I'm talking about links like ...
30
votes
6answers
566 views

What are your favorite counter-intuitive principles or ideas within UX? [closed]

A quick example: "Paradox of Choice" - Giving a user more control via options, configuration, and settings is counter-intuitive from a UX standpoint. We expect users will relish their total ...
19
votes
2answers
738 views

Why do some apps feel “heavy” while others feel “light”?

I have come up with a new concept and that is that every application or interface has a 'heavyness factor'. Let me give you an example: Google chrome feels 'light', it loads fast, doesn't take long ...
11
votes
3answers
5k views

Mental model vs Conceptual model — what's the difference?

I'm reading Apple's Human Interface Guidelines about Mental models and I can't understand what is the difference between Mental and Conceptual models. I prefer a short answer if possible :)
9
votes
4answers
605 views

Resources for learning Gestalt principles

I've seen the Gestalt principles or laws referenced often when it comes to graphic design and even UI and UX. Is there some definitive guide, book or original research about this subject that I can ...
31
votes
13answers
9k views

Is it true that “the only 'intuitive' interface is the nipple”?

Everyone knows the famous quote (by Bruce Ediger or Steve Jobs, I'm not sure): The only "intuitive" interface is the nipple. After that it's all learned. It's an amusing gem, but is it really ...
17
votes
2answers
493 views

Social media sharing: Does simply showing icons stimulate action?

This is tangentially related to the question "Social Media Icons - show all visible, or group under 'share'?". In my organization, we've generally found that displaying the individual icons for ...
20
votes
5answers
643 views

Will faster GUI always make one more efficient?

Are there any studies on whether one will actually get more done during a days work if delays went down i. e. from 10 ms to 5 ms for each update. My point is that if we are already working at the ...
16
votes
6answers
2k views

Monitors display more colors than human eye can distinguish

The human eye can differentiate about 10 million colors. A 24-bit display mode can produce about 16 million. Why, then, do operating systems have 32-bit and higher display modes if the apparent ...
13
votes
6answers
671 views

Why are nested elements scrolled to the opposite direction?

My question is about scrolling conventions, and spatial scroll conventions in general (even here it's only horizontal, but same applies for vertical scrolling). Looking at the below mockup, why is it ...
9
votes
6answers
485 views

Should I style my buttons?

Are there any major advantages / disadvantages in styling ones buttons like Facebook, Twitter and StackExchange - vs. not styling them like Craigslist and 4chan?
7
votes
4answers
896 views

How many objects/things can the average person compare at once?

I recall reading that the average person can only effectively compare 7 things at once. Has anyone heard of this and can reference any studies/research done on object comparison? To give you some ...