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10

I don't know if there is an easy answer to this question. But there are some great quotes that reflect my opinion on the subject. You can often find this quote inside books and articles concerning usability and design: "Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." - Antoine de ...


8

Eric Burke on Simplicity:


7

To an extent, you can do both. Keep it as simple as possible for most users and use progressive disclosure to reveal the more advanced options for users that need them. Keep in mind, however, that more does not always equal better. Option overload occurs when there are so many choices that the user feels overwhelmed and frustrated.


6

I'll reproduce here a small rant about the evils of advanced UI flexibility in the last 4 or 5 paragraphs of this entry on my blog about an aspect of Outlook's UI. Now, there are those who might see this as a triumph of Microsoft usability. After all, I had a problem, and thanks to the flexibility they built in, I was able to fix it. Yay ...


6

I don't think they are mutually exclusive but in the cases they are you have to look at what your customers want / need. Any interface can be made simpler by moving complex functionality out of the way to some other place. I think that is the main trade off. To make it easier to use for the average user you have to make it more complicated for the power ...


4

They're not necessarily mutually exclusive. For instance, GMail is a complicated UI that is easy to learn. Excel is a rich, deep UI that has many hidden complexities - but the learnability is high due to its immediate shallowness (all you need to do to use it is click in a cell and start typing). I think the question touches more on issues with ...


3

What do you choose? :) My answer: simplicity UI. But it is difficult to implement. But it is nice.


2

Im all for simple UIs. Most users prefer a simple, clean and simple to understand UI. Think Google. Think IPod. How many people do you know that take advantage of UI settings?


2

For selecting fonts, it's usually a droplist with the name of the font (often in the font it represents), sometimes with the most often used fonts on top. For colors you can so something similar to what Microsoft Word (and many others do): The "drop area" contains the standard colors (it's usually better to show the actual color, rather than just writing ...


2

If you want to offer the full color spectrum, then a dropdown is definitely NOT the way to go. Color pickers are way more suited for that. If for some reason that's not possible, you might consider using a scrollbar to, with the far ends being the ends of the spectrum. Also, a segmented scrollbar can be used to define font height. Either way, providing an ...


2

Why not go with a Dropdown at the end of the list that says «more actions»? I think this solves your issue of users looking for actions they cannot find, and lets the user customize the toolbar if he wants to. If this is not an option, I would go for the right click showing all options of the buttons for accessibility reasons. If the user did right-click ...


1

I think you've already answered your own question in your diagram. I think I'd just sort them from most valuable to least valuable. That's not exposing the actual scores, but will likely get people to fill in the top ones first. If you tell people they don't need to answer all questions and then once they've filled in enough activate the "Next button". If ...


1

There is a traditional way of approaching this problem which can be exemplified by visual studio's implementation They group the menu bar into functional sections, and each section has a little arrow drop at the end of it that shows all of the tool and an customization link. It feels a little complicated using it but it does accomplish the goals rather ...


1

As of now you and the dev company are at loggerheads over an abstract question. The most useful answer will be informed by testing on users, not just the better theory. Take the battle of wills out of the question be re-framing it as: ought the app font be fixed? (Or, ought the app font vary?) With simple A/B testing of pairs of fonts you can discover: ...


1

Go for simplicity and forget flexibility, Microsoft has done research about this when they developed Office 2007, I'll give you two quotes from this post What users say: ...talking to some of our expert users within large companies, who in several cases assured us that "everyone" customizes their UI... What actually happens: In fewer than 2% of sessions, ...


1

This is an interesting related article by Mike Rundle: http://flyosity.com/iphone/kill-the-settings-build-opinionated-software.php Even if it's not of help, it's still a good read.


1

IMHO, flexibility is too often an excuse for not implementing a UI well in the first place. However, you can have both. Write a simple UI in a fairly easy to understand language, like Lua. Give parts of the interface a tiny button which a user can press to bring up the Lua code for that bit. Then they can freely edit the UI.



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