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180

Don't do it. A lot of people (myself included) open many new tabs rather than browse in a single one. If I suddenly have a noise coming from a tab: I have to find the offending tab When I do find it, I'm annoyed with whichever company / site it is I then close the tab There is no good reason to do on a website. In an app, I would still argue against ...


61

Don't do this! Jacob Nielsen listed this in his article "Readers' Comments on the new Top-10 Design Mistakes" where it is being called "intrusive" and "highly annoying".


44

Answer this first: Is the user expecting it? To cite some actual recommendations rather than opinions, the punkchip article Autoplay is bad for all users is 3 years old but as valid as ever. The article should be read in it's entirety, but quotes the W3C’s specification for accessibility (WCAG 2.0). There is a small note in one of the audio criterion, ...


34

What about taking a waveform resolved to stretch only a short distance, say 200px, then wrap it around a ring so it fits inside the square thumbnail constraints. So... length of waveform graph would be... related to pi somewhat. Like this, which I made in photoshop using the polar coordinates command.


27

Put on a song that you know, and have someone hit pause and play at random times, then have them randomly turn the volume up and down. Lowering the volume, rather than pausing the music, is less disruptive to the user. Your brain can fill in the gaps in music they are listening to if they are even somewhat familiar with it (it's why people can listen to ...


26

While I concur with all the others who recommend not doing this, there are some (few) products where start-up sounds makes sense: Hardware boot, where the Mac startup chime and the IBM POST beep codes both signify that nothing has gone wrong with the hardware (or, alternatively, that something has gone wrong with the hardware). Depending on the hardware ...


25

A smooshed-up waveform doesn't seem very useful. For all practical purposes it's meaningless, and it'd be hard to tell two 180x180px waveforms apart at a glance. Instead you might consider a visual hash like Identicon. That would still be meaningless, but the thumbnails would be visually distinct. A clever algorithm could even make similar files (e.g. songs ...


18

It's all about expectation and convention / consensus, also in some respect it's about courtesy to your user, and not irritating them. Web Pages - No, never. The experience of opening web page which plays a sound, is widely accepted as negative. You will be hard pressed to find a popular web page/app that does this, Generally this consensus has been ...


17

I would say it should get progressively louder. There have been very few times when I have set an alarm with no purpose. However, there have been many times when I have hit the snooze button when I shouldn't have due to poor decision making skills in a semi-sleep state. Trust the alert person setting the alarm, not the half-conscious person trying to ignore ...


17

This is the best article that I'm aware of on this topic: http://www.punkchip.com/2009/04/autoplay-is-bad-for-all-users/


15

I didn't understand whether by "chopping and stretching" you meant taking a segment of the audio data and stretching it so it fills the square, or rearranging it. The rearranging approach sounds like a good idea.


12

Playing sounds can be useful when showing error messages, information dialog boxes etc. However... It is not the responsibility of your application to force the user to hear these sounds. This is something that must be configurable by the user, and since most operating systems already have such a configuration possibility, I see no added value in creating ...


11

I'll answer the question from a slightly different angle... The intention would be - evoking emotions on the user - make the brandname "stick" I think that's what needs the focus. There's two issues here: evoke emotion Sound can certainly evoke emotion. However, in the context of a user trying to accomplish a task, what are the emotions they'd ...


10

When the student gets an answer wrong, you probably shouldn't play any sound at all. From About Face 3, chapter 25: Given the choice of no noise versus noise for negative feedback, people will choose the former. Given the choice of no noise versus soft and pleasant noises for positive feedback, however, people will choose the feedback. The ...


9

Thumbnails are meant as a preview for identifying the object without getting into the details. Using the wave form in a thumbnail would not help identify the audio track. What you could do is: Use a vocal thumbnail (e.g. 10sec preview) played on mouse over Use a visual representation of the contents e.g. use a database or pre-identified and tagged ...


9

The goal of this sound is to associate the brand with the listener's experience on the site. The risks of this going wrong seem to outweigh the benefits. First, the person ended up on your site hopefully through a conscious decision. So you aren't giving the user any new, useful information by playing a sound. Meanwhile, there are plenty of scenarios where ...


9

The benefit of an audible alarm is that it gives the operator information without them having to look at the screen - and hopefully draws their attention to the screen. Each sound is also different to give the operator quick feedback on what the alarm is. So when you have multiple simultaneous alarms, playing only one of the alarms would give ...


8

This is not such a good idea assuming your text is reasonably readable for your audience (e.g., it’s not their second language, they’re not kids just starting to read, and you use decent font style, size, and color contrast). There’s evidence that simultaneously presenting the same text verbally and visually increases cognitive load and degrades learning. ...


7

Good idea. I often turn my phone on silent before opening something just so that I don't have this issue. Would be nice if more designers thought this through. Getting to the first screen with an option to turn sound off without any sound playing is a good idea. It doesn't have to be an in-your-face question that users have to pay attention to, but ...


7

If I were to design an alarm clock, I would make it neither louder nor softer. Instead, I would go for shorter and shorter snooze periods, until it refuses to snooze anymore. I can't really see a case for a softer alarm, including the one that you described. As for louder, there are many situations were louder will wake up others, e.g. a roommate or ...


6

The choice of which is better is mostly personal. I know some people prefer the one and other people prefer the other. Either one is a fair choice, so ask some of your users and then make a decision on the default behaviour based on their feedback. I would however recommend having an option in your app for how to handle the situation. In addition to ...


5

You need to beware of thinking of a wrong answer as a "user error". Your application's purpose is to tell the user whether their entered answer is correct or not. An incorrect answer is not an "error" as such, and shouldn't be treated like "invalid input". It's valid input that happens to be the wrong answer. (Carried to extremes, applying 'error handling' ...


5

Depends on the look and feel of the game and the game mechanics, but you should try and match the sounds to the feel of the graphics and pace you want to achieve, how rewarded a person should feel for answering a single question, versus passing a level, etc. Examples: if you use avatars(illustrations of people), record someone saying "Correct!" or ...


5

The only time it makes sense from a UX point of view is when the action is specifically to play media. I'll use YouTube as an example: if you see a video in a list and click on it, it takes you to the player page where it starts playing automatically. This actually makes sense from a UX point of view, as the action desired is to play the media. Without ...


5

Use the loading or game start screen to indicate that the game will be playing sound and to adjust the volume accordingly. I've seen some games, notably Osmos for iOS and Mac that shows a image of headphones and says something like 'Best enjoyed with headphones' to emphasize the acoustic element. That indication also prompts the user to know that the game is ...


5

One of the questions raised was how do audio interfaces differ from visual interfaces. I believe this passage explains it very well: Audio interfaces present content linearly to users, one item at a time. This contrasts with the way in which most people use visual interfaces. Sighted users can scan an entire screen almost instantaneously, ...


5

Most people don't have an external amplifier or control on their audio output, so you can't assume it is there. You then need two other controls. One master control to set the desired global range of all your applications, and local controls for each application to set their sound relative to your global setting. If you tried to remove either one of ...


5

1. Double-clicking on an visual entity that is not available Entity should be rendered in a such a way user do not want to interact with it: source You can use: different colors special icon/marker to articulate it's status etc 2. Trying to insert something but something's wrong somewhere I would say beep will not help here. It is better to provide ...


5

The first question you should ask yourself is: How many users are woking with sound enabled? And how many of them are listening to music (surely with headphones)? I just asked around in my office (28 persons in my room), and only 4 of them have the sound enabled and each of them are listening to music. What I want to say: If we take the numbers of my quick ...



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