Words used to describe or identify things, either from the user or designer's perspective.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

161
votes
10answers
20k views

Do we “exit”, “quit” or “close” an application?

Do we “exit” an application, do we “quit” an application, do we “close” an application? This is in relation to a desktop app. What is the most meaningful term to use?
61
votes
10answers
6k views

“New” vs. “Create”

For buttons that initiate some content creation interaction, which label is better: "New X" or "Create X"? Are there specific uses that in which one is better than the other?
57
votes
23answers
5k views

Better term for “user” [closed]

I often have to explain some aspect of an application, and often need to refer to users. I really don't like the term as it is not something with a good connotation (e.g. drug users) to the ...
55
votes
9answers
52k 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.
53
votes
15answers
7k views

Alternatives to “Like”, “+1”, “Bookmark”, and “Favorite”?

I'm building a web-app where users indicate that they "like" feed-items published by other users. The act of "liking" also inherently bookmarks the feed-item as well as the publishing user. I'm ...
53
votes
17answers
4k views

What word can be used to mean either click or tap?

Very often we need to speak generically about clicking or tapping an item, but there seems to be a lack of vocabulary in English for this. We could just say "click or tap" every time, but that is ...
51
votes
11answers
10k views

Why did Microsoft choose the word “Recycle Bin”?

If you delete something in Windows OS, it will go to Recycle bin. But if you think about it nothing recycles in it right? Say, you delete a virus infected file and again restore it from recycle bin ...
45
votes
7answers
5k views

Synonym for 'GUI' for non-technical people?

Does anyone know a good synonym for 'GUI' that non-technical people will understand? Or a simple sentence explaining it that still won't scare them off? I mean this in the context of, for example, ...
45
votes
3answers
5k views

Why is it called the fold?

Why is the place where the visible screen (on load) ends called the Fold? I have a hard time even writing out the definition for it, but when someone says The Fold, I know exactly what they mean. ...
44
votes
9answers
2k views

Do non-technical/non-web savvy users understand the concept of tags?

Here at Stack Exchange we're currently wrestling with weaknesses in our tags system. As we open up new verticals – some of which include very non-technical users like cooking – we suspect that the ...
41
votes
6answers
42k views

What is the exact difference between fluid and responsive design?

What is the exact difference between fluid and responsive design? I am bit confused about fluid and responsive design. Fluid is the one where we give width in percentages so that design will look ...
40
votes
16answers
3k views

Why do we say we “browse” to a place on the Internet when we actually download a web server’s content to our browser? [closed]

Browsing the web is a common daily task for more than a billion users, and we do not pay much attention to it. We just “browse to a place” or ask our laughing friend across the table “where she is on ...
40
votes
2answers
8k views

When to use “join,” “register,” or “sign up”?

For a user, when is it better to be asked to do the following: "Sign In" vs. "Log in" "Join" vs. "Register" vs. "Sign Up" "Sign Out" vs. "Log out" Different websites seem to use them differently, ...
35
votes
6answers
3k views

Is the term 'field' too technical when giving messages on a form?

When writing help or validation messages on a form I usually write something along the lines of: "This field is required" "5 fields need to be corrected on this form" etc Is the term field too ...
34
votes
11answers
9k views

Search Vs. Filter- what is the difference

From the view of the user (not from a technical view)- What are the main differences between searching and filtering data, in order to get specific results? i.e.- in both cases the user is looking ...
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 ...
27
votes
4answers
1k views

You, Me, or Joe Soap

When listing content in an application (think of a list of documents) we show the name of the document and the name of the author. What should be shown for the author's name when the person reading ...
26
votes
5answers
2k views

Is database too technical a term for user?

Are these terms 'Database', 'Record', 'Table', 'Field', 'Row', and 'Column' too technical (or even relevant) for a normal online banking application user, especially when talking to a customer service ...
26
votes
11answers
1k views

Usability/UX elevator pitch?

Whenever I try to introduce someone to usability/ux, I always find myself having to explain the following: The definition of usability/ux. The fact that I make web site easier and more pleasant to ...
26
votes
6answers
910 views

Should I use the terminology left/right click?

When instructing users which mouse button to click an element with, it standard practice to use the phrase 'left/right click': To download the file, 'right click' the link and choose 'Save Target ...
25
votes
2answers
888 views

Defining “Instantaneous” as part of usability acceptance criteria

The Setup I have run into this problem time and time again. An interface is performing slow and QA and/or Engineering come back and ask, "can you please define the acceptance criteria for how fast ...
23
votes
8answers
2k views

Which phrase is better: “Sort chronologically” or “Sort by date”?

I'm adding on to an advanced search screen, the standard few sort orders: by date, by name, etc. I'm just wondering what the more commonly used/accepted way of phrasing it would be. "Chronologically" ...
22
votes
6answers
2k views

How can I deal with diverse gender identities in user profiles?

I'm trying to work out the wording for (preferably) a gender dropdown in a user profile of a site I'm working on. I want to be inclusive of people who don't gender orient to either male or female ( ...
22
votes
6answers
806 views

Is the term 'real-time' understood outside the tech community?

We are making a website for pixel art that will have a diverse audience. Our leading tagline for the site is: "Real-time, collaborative pixel art." Real-time meaning updates to the pages will be ...
20
votes
5answers
13k views

What is a “toast notification”?

Microsoft mentions the toast as a visual element in the package manifest for Metro-style apps with the attribute ToastCapable="true". What does this mean?
20
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
9answers
5k views

Documentation - do we “Click”, “Push”, “Press” or “Select” a button on a touch-screen interface

I'm writing some documentation for a web-based application that will run on Android tablets at the factory at which I am employed. I am having trouble wording the steps where the users must interact ...
19
votes
6answers
999 views

Is there a name for the UI that marks key positions in a scroll bar?

In Chrome, when you do a text search, you'll see the locations of found instances of the text string shown as yellow lines in the vertical scrollbar. If you run Visual Studio with the Resharper ...
19
votes
3answers
522 views

Is “having fun” a quality of User Experience?

Most of us here take user experience very seriously, and we answer questions with testing, convention, design pattern, white spacing, grouping, similarity, simplicity, proximity, consistency and much ...
18
votes
5answers
3k views

Is user experience design (UXD) equal to user centered design (UCD)?

Can user experience design (UXD) and user centered design (UCD) be considered the same? If not, how do they relate to each other and how do they differ?
17
votes
6answers
1k views

What does it mean to 'humanise' interfaces?

When people say 'humanise' an interface, what exactly do they mean? Or is there a more formal word to this idea. The word 'humanise' sounds vague to me. It could mean several ideas if not taken ...
17
votes
5answers
3k views

The notification tray at the top of Stack Exchange sites: what is it called? And are there other good examples of this?

I'm trying to clean up notifications for a client site and was wondering if the notification pattern that Stack Exchange employs has a name that I can use to search for more examples.
17
votes
3answers
1k views

What’s the origin of the metaphor “cloud”?

Today we use the term “cloud” without thinking about it. We use it mainly in terms of storage online, far away and unreachable. We can’t plug in a USB memory in the cloud to download data. We plug the ...
17
votes
7answers
2k views

When did UX start being called UX?

When did people start talking about User Experience as a role/domain similar to the way that it's used today? The earliest reference I can find is the Norman, Miller, Henderson CHI 95 piece on ...
17
votes
12answers
4k views

What should internal “home pages” and “index pages” be called?

I'm trying to figure out what these respective web pages are called in relation to the larger architecture. Here's a simplified architecture diagram: I understand that Home at the top is properly ...
16
votes
11answers
9k views

How to explain to my client the difference between Front End and Back End?

I'm currently managing a project to bring a medium-sized shop into the online world for the first time. The very non-technical shop owner is failing to understand what "front-end" and "back-end" ...
16
votes
2answers
702 views

What is User Experience (UX)?

I've looked at this site for the first time today. I've checked About, the FAQ and the FAQ and searched, and I don't seem to be able to find an answer on this site. These are the closest I can find: ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

What's the common name for this button?

I'm trying to find out what is the way to call this kind of button: To be precise, I'm talking about a button which acts like a regular one for most of its area, but has also a "more" area, ...
15
votes
6answers
324 views

Is there a term/name for these labels?

Are there any conventional names for these informational labels?
14
votes
7answers
3k views

Which UI design pattern is this? (progress bar at the top of an article)

On this page there is a progress bar at the top which progresses as you scroll down. I’m really intrigued by this UI pattern. Does anyone know its name or its origin?
14
votes
6answers
849 views

Correct terminology for “please the interviewer” bias?

I'm pushing usability testing within my workplace by performing some Steve Krug style usability tests, which have gone down so well that the product owner now wants me to add some marketing questions. ...
14
votes
7answers
335 views

Any alternative to the term “anonymous”?

In some contexts, allowing users to send posts or comments without disclosing their identity can add value by providing more freedom of speech. Words like "anonymous" and "anonymity" do convey this ...
14
votes
3answers
551 views

Is there a difference between affordance and discovery?

Looking at the UX principles that mozilla use as keywords to tag bugs in bugzilla it looks like ux-affordance and ux-discovery are very similar: ux-affordance — controls should visually express ...
13
votes
3answers
550 views

Desktop metaphor - Why is it called “windows”?

The desktop metaphor is modelled after a real life desk with files and folders on top and useful items (calculator, trash bin...) nearby. And when we take something in our hands to examine it more ...
12
votes
8answers
239 views

What's the definition of “Usability”?

I'm looking for a clear, single-sentence definition of usability. A short definition of usability would make it much easier to convince people that usability is worth investing in. For example, a ...
12
votes
5answers
536 views

Term for menu that appears at the top of many webpages

What is the term for the menu that appears at the top right of many webpages? Here are two examples:
12
votes
3answers
367 views

What do you think is a better label “New” or “Add”

At the moment I am building a web application that stores a lot of data inside of tables. In each of the pages containing the tables the users have many actions; they can add, delete, or edit the ...
12
votes
3answers
665 views

no-reply@yourdomain.com or a real address?

For authentication emails and various other one-way communication applications often use no-reply@yourdomain.com. This comes across as unfriendly when compared to something like hello@yourdomain.com. ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What do you call websites that make heavy use of vertical scrolling?

This question is similar to Why did scrolling vertically became a pattern? I see a lot of modern websites moving to larger, singular pages with more content and more vertical scrolling. This is often ...
12
votes
4answers
309 views

What do you call a form that changes based on users answers?

I am looking for what to call the UX idea of a form that changes based on the answers a user has entered. For example a web form that asks: Are you satisfied with your purchase? If you answer ...