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66

Because of: Familiarity: Everyone has more or less learned to use it and a lot of users don't even need to take a look at at individual keys to type. Although not physically, it's present and has the same layout across devices. Usefulness: You can perform an incredible HUGE variety of task just with a keyboard. Accessibility: It provides an accessible ...


54

The historical reason is that that's what the spacebar does in more, the lowest common demoninator (and probably oldest) of text pagers. In more, it makes sense to map the largest key on the keyboard to the most common action: show the next page. In the glory days of more, you couldn't count on mouse scrollwheels, page down buttons, or sometimes even arrow ...


48

There is at least a single benefit for those not using a mouse - Normally you are able to tab between input elements using the keyboard, this is an indicator as to which element currently has your focus.


41

Rewobs answer is already excellent, but for a deeper understanding it's valuable to consider what alternatives we have. Chorded keyboard Already in the mother of all demos in 1968 an alternative input device was proposed: the chorded keyboard (though the concept is even older). The idea is that instead of moving your fingers to dedicated keys one at a ...


36

Don't use meaningless imagery just for decorative purposes. They'll get ignored, it's clutter, it needs to be downloaded by the end-user which means the site will be slower to load... There are numerous reasons not to use such images when they don't have any purpose. However I think you are overlooking one option: Typography. Good typography can be ...


30

Yes, and it's called finger-friendly. Smaller touch targets are harder for users to hit than larger ones. When you’re designing mobile interfaces, it’s best to make your targets big so that they’re easy for users to tap. But exactly how big should you make them to give the best ease of use to the majority of your users? Many mobile developers have ...


27

The spacebar is the largest key of your keyboard, and is consequently the easiest one to interact with. For that reason, apps tend to use the spacebar for: a simple action: where no input, precision or direction is involved. a repeated action: the spacebar is the easiest to press several times in a row. a "forgivable" action: if you accidentally press it, ...


26

Another option is to use a semi-transparent layer on top of the images for text which allows you to control the colour and hue of all the images so you can have a more consistent looking portfolio (if desired). The Verge uses a lot of colour gradients which may of may not be to your taste, but it can be an effective way of combining both text whilst being ...


20

This is a pretty broad question, but if you're looking for some resources, here are a few I would suggest: Apple iOS UI Design Dos & Don'ts Apple: Designing for iOS7 Android Design Guidelines Designing Mobile Interfaces by Steven Hoober and Eric Berkman Mobile Design Pattern Gallery: UI Patterns for Mobile Applications by Theresa Neil Microinteractons: ...


19

I don't have any evidence that this is the reason the spacebar is used for page down, but back in the day when IBM was setting PC design standards (that still heavily influence the design today), the original IBM AT 84-key keyboard from 1981 (IIRC) did not have page up/down or dedicated arrow keys (they shared the number pad): The standard 101-key ...


19

Their usefulness scales beautifully with experience and developed skill Someone who knows only a little bit of numbers and letters can use a keyboard for a variety of tasks, even without knowing about the importance of the "shift key". As each button on the keyboard is labeled clearly with what each key will output when pressed, a person can guess quite ...


18

Read this article on font legibility. At least look at this graph of on-screen reading times (shorter line = faster/better): The differences aren't that large, but it's worth noting that Times (a serif font) came in second place. For medium-large text consider ClearType (or whatever Apple's alternative for it is). For very small text (~<= size 10.5, ...


18

To have a less formal tone to your users, if this is a learning application (asserted from screenshot), I would use what you really write in your question: Your next step: That way you would get users feel more relaxed and more focused on learning.


18

The idea behind this bar can be traced back to Gestalt's law of similarity which states: Elements within an assortment of objects are perceptually grouped together if they are similar to each other. This is why you shall see two columns in (a) and two rows in (b). The latter also demonstrates that colour wins over shape (in this specific example at ...


16

Wikipedia seems to be popular with the information so far... :) So here's info from the history section of the page on caps lock The Caps Lock key is a modified version of the Shift lock key that occupies the same position on the keyboards of mechanical typewriters. An early innovation in mechanical typewriters was the introduction of a second ...


15

You should always use the word which is common among the users, no matter if it is the technically correct one or not. In Why the electronic land registry failed, Lauesen gave a very vivid example of this. This is a story of a large system which had to be made mandatory for use in real estate purchases in the whole of Denmark. The requirements were ...


15

The biggest advantage of radial or pie menus is their speed. To quote this article. Radial Menus Are Fast Radial menus are faster to access than list-based menus in every kind of pointer-based UI, including cursor, stylus, and touch. One big part of that is because every option is spaced at the same distance from the pointer. That’s classic ...


14

'Instructions' are a better term here, as the term 'directions' is broader, and may cause confusion. Whereas instructions are directions as they apply to information specifically.


14

I'm assuming we are talking about a desktop app here. Further, I don't really know the type of app you are building, but can offer some help in studying the needs of the user without getting bogged down with the question of "how many clicks does it take to get to a good UX". Most of your examples seem to be on text editors; so, we'll go with that. My ...


13

A possible solution would be to do it like JIRA does. Normal: While hovering over it: When clicked on it:


11

To find an alternative that solves the problems with the Pinterest layout, step one is identifying what specifically the problem with the Pinterest layout is. The big design compromise with the pinterest layout and your example is lack of *heirarchy* - relying entirely on the imagery in equally-weighted items to catch the eye. This underlies your problem ...


11

The difference between touch and mouse is much deeper than just the size of the controls. It requires another way of thinking: • Swipe rather than scroll (which requires you to rethink the role of scrollbars) • Pinch rather than click to zoom. • Cursor remains invisible (because under your finger). This makes operations much more direct but also less ...


11

These are called 'Dark patterns' and these can be used in many different ways to influence users behaviour. Social networks as you mentioned put the logout button in a separate menu, Facebook in particular hide the 'deactivate' option very deeply in a settings structure. Some people also believe that you can never delete your Facebook account, when in ...


10

Is it even neccessary to show how many children are left to be approved at all? How many administrators will be doing the approvals? If it is more than one then the task will probably be split up anyway (please correct me if I'm wrong) so instead of showing the progress bar you could do one of the following: on approval of one listing ask the admin if ...


10

It seems to me you are looking for the "wizard" ui pattern. Here is a link that has a lot more information explaining the purpose and reasoning behind the pattern: http://ui-patterns.com/patterns/Wizard To give the user feedback on where they are in the wizard either text or graphics can be used. I think this is the particular piece you are referring to. ...


10

After doing some reading it seems that the highlighting in fact does help the user as people have come to be reliant on the UX/UI guiding them through the page and showing where they are focusing as well. For example if a user is filling out a form and using the "tab" key to jump from area to area they want to see the focus highlight change from what they ...


10

One method that has become more popular is to actually put the call-to-action in the whitespace itself. That way once the action has been completed the space will be filled and you won't need the call-to-action there anymore. Other ways of dealing with whitespace is to provide instructions or messages that encourages the user to perform the action that you ...


10

Keyboards are the ideal human/computer interface design until we can directly control computers with our minds. That's a bold statement, especially since most depictions of the future in popular culture show us all the cool ways we will be able to interface with a computer. To back that statement up, I'm going to define the problem keyboards solve first. ...


9

I agree with WebDevelopteer, having different categories of things in the same column is not very intuitive. But you can go a different way. This is a (very) quick idea. How about having the verification icon first, and only once it's been clicked and verified it shows you the Primary selection as a different button? The verification button would have two ...


9

Designing and testing interfaces for touch-screen kiosks is my primary responsibility in my current role, so sorry if I get overly technical or too wordy (I could—and do—talk for hours about this stuff). There are many, many differences between large format touch screens and mobile devices. My strongest recommendation is to not do any design at all until ...



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