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7

With the iPhone, the advantage of having all the settings in the Settings.app is clear - the user knows exactly where to find the settings. There are also big disadvantages, which has meant that in practice almost no apps do this anymore. The first is that you are a little limited by what you can put in the settings, and doing things like validation on ...


7

An icon is necessarily an abstraction of an idea which means that the farther removed the abstraction is from the reality the more confusing the icon will be. Representing cutting by a scissors icon makes sense because the word "cut" is being represented by the icon rather than the act of "removing something from a within a given context and storing it in ...


7

The Apple folks are famous for taking away every possible feature and really focussing on a few things. I'd suggest following their lead. Daring Fireball has quite good piece on the Apple mantra: We can put all of our products on the table you’re sitting at. Those products together sell $40 billion per year. No other company can make that claim except ...


6

I believe that the users should be able to recognize your site/service at a glance. The colors and fonts are part of your branding and should usually be kept constant, except, perhaps if your site performs a service that's supposed to be user-specific (or any other third-parties) and you want to let them express themselves. Take YouTube for example - a ...


5

I don't think it necessary or even worth it. The floppy icon just means "save". Even my kids who have never used a floppy disk know that it means save. They don't necessarily know that it once represented the medium to which we saved data. Take another example "cut". This is often represented by a pair of scissors - it certainly is in Word 2007. This ...


5

Google calls their seasonal holiday logos "doodles", and in the absence of a better term, I'll refer to them as doodles, too. This may seem like fluff, but it occurred to me that our call-centre employees—users of the software on which I currently work—might benefit from doodles that reflect our employers' current marketing campaign. Especially when the ...


5

Sometimes, giving the user straight options won't help. For example - I could be a real-estate agent on a tour (making me both a tourist and a real-estate agent), so which one should I chose on your site? The "thing" you need here is a Natural language UI, give the user a short paragraph, let him fill in some blanks that best describes his visit to the ...


4

The 'skinning' concept is something MS has pushed throughout most of the .net frameworks and IDEs. The main concern I have with it is that most of the default themes MS provides are terrible. They tend to lack meaningful emphasis, over-use contrast, and just tend to generally add to chart junk. Personally, enabling custom skinning of your UI should be the ...


4

Yes. If you assume you know what the right colors for everone are, then you are naive. Different people need different color themes depending on: Their vision The surrounding lighting (see these two answers: TVs, Sunlight) The specific content they are looking at (e.g. uniform colored text vs graphics or multi colored text) and even their mood. Look at ...


4

Why not make the main page do the separation for you? Use nice big box/tiles/whatever to let the user decide why they are there on the site. Here is how codeacademy labs divides it language platforms: Here is how cydia lets you setup your environment based on your area of interest:


4

Let's split the problem: users can ask for design customization, and interface elements customization (like MS Word in the late nineties, see what I mean?). From my point of view, the former is one the most normal and legitimate needs of human beings. People like to have their own look, but this doesn't mean that you should give full customization power ...


3

If you're using skinned inputs and other form elements I think an unskinned drop down breaks the flow. The important thing to keep in mind is accessibility from a development perspective. All actions with a faux dropdown should make use of native form actions with the default select. You should never break default behavior just to have something look ...


3

Ask your users! :) Why not do an exercise where you ask your users (the ones who actually add captions to their photos) to go through 50 of their photos and tell you all the captions they have used and the frequency of each one? I also wonder how many times I would want to add the same caption to multiple photos (except may be great photo). Captions are ...


3

Adapting the UI for the holidays serves probably very well the online retailers. The best example is Amazon.com which decorates every year its UI for Christmas. For my part, I tend to spend more when I'm in a "Christmas mood". For instance, as soon as I decorate my apartment for this time of the year, I'm sure my spending behaviors change. Maybe the ...


3

Well, for users with visual impairments it may be a deciding factor in whether or not they use your software. If windows themes are not applied to your software, it is important to offer high contrast settings. Anything beyond high contrast themes is probably just an initiative of your marketing department, but I haven't seen any research on cosmetic ...


3

I propose to use colon symbol (:) for loops. It contains appropriate semantics: A colon is used to explain or start an enumeration. So, try {clients:} instead. The ending tag could be: {clients.} – save semantics, but maybe not very visible {:clients} – more consistent with starting tag


2

Think of icons as a form of language. A lot of icon's symbols have become ingrained as a form of writing now. A disk will always mean 'save'. A strip of film with sprocket holes will always mean 'movie', etc. Younger generations may eventually move beyond that and update their UI icons to refer to more contemporary objects (such as iTunes moving to a ...


2

There have been usability tests done showing that older users are slower and less likely to complete tasks that younger folks (e.g. teens) can complete quickly and without failure. If you're developing an interface for only older folks, then create icons that make sense to them. And make sure that you actually do some user testing to make sure your ...


2

The point of a dashboard is to give the user pertinent information at a glance. The user's role is a good starting point however there is much more information you could collect to determine what dashboard elements are important to the user. For example your users may have two roles however seeing both dashboards may not be appropriate for them. They may be ...


2

I think the most important thing when working on images on mobile screens is screen real estate. You want more image and less UI so that you can see the fine details you are manipulating. So I propose that you pack them all in as much as possible. Here is a quick mock up of one solution: The button is in the lower left and the screen is clean. They can ...


2

The term that I've seen used for these is "widgets" or "gadgets" (as in Google Gadgets). The older "applets" might also apply - but that term is laden with Java symbolism and might now be confused with iOS applications. I don't know of a term other "customisable". The BBC site has a similar layout manager.


2

Mr Nielson did a study into the customisation which gave some pretty interesting feedback. Customization of UIs and Products The main gist of the research was that if you're going to include customization make sure you do it properly, as if it is overly complex then it will confuse users. Also, many people won't even bother with the customisation ...


2

Forms are a tricky beast, and can be dangerous in the wrong hands. We use Google Docs within our company, and the amount of internal forms that get sent around with checkboxes where there should be radio buttons and vice-versa. I would be very cautious about giving too much control to the untrained user. The approach I would take is to discuss with your ...


2

Following facts are good indicators that you may be (I'm just saying may be) should consider theme support: your web interface is mature, each piece ideally fits with any other piece, business logic and functionality is tweaked almost to perfection and you are pretty sure that your application will evolve, without any revolutionary 'coup-d'etats'. users ...


2

The requirement for themeing should come from your customers (either existing or prospective). If they, or your marketing department see a value in this functionality add it. Some requirements that spring to mind: The application must look like it fits in with the operating system or user environment (i.e. looks like a native Windows application) The ...


2

Customization in consumer products has always been targeted at "making it yours". We're all unique so even if we all have an iPhone and we're all on Facebook, we like that unicity to shine through somewhere. Some services used to overdo that (ahem myspace ahem). Facebook and Twitter on the other hand have a nice balance of offering customization, allowing ...


2

I think you are describing a check box : download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups I propose you to use your 50x28 room for a Plus button that delivers you the options in a drop down menu. download bmml source I do not know if I am or not respecting the following constraint : I can't change the dropdown box UI but ...


2

I'd say the "handedness" of a user is only of limited information. Many other factors affect the way a user interacts with the touch screen of a hand held device. You could be lying on your side, or perhaps you put your smartphone down on a table. While a gesture (say a sideways swipe) might have a different curvature when performed with either hand, it will ...


2

I have encountered similar psychology. It seems users have a natural propensity to jump right into designing and customizing to their "needs," without regard to solving the problem or meeting goals. In my experience with doing microsites for internal groups in large organizations, users tend to think they are part of designing a website. However, this is ...


1

Obviously it depends on the app. In my experience generally speaking most software gives users too many options and would be better served offering fewer choices. OTOH iPhones are such personal devices the sense of individuality customization affords could be valuable. Just be sure to not enable the user to degrade the app. There might be an layout ...



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