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368

Never use 'Yes' or 'OK' when you could use a verb instead. And you can almost always use a verb instead of 'Yes' or 'OK'. I agree with Lukas Mathis' postulation that nobody reads your dialog boxes. Use a verb whenever possible instead of 'Yes' or 'OK' because your buttons will make sense out of context with the explanatory text or title. This is a view ...


99

As with everything: user test! Thankfully, usability hero Jakob Nielsen jumps to the rescue here in his Alertbox article about OK/Cancel buttons: Should the OK button come before or after the Cancel button? Following platform conventions is more important than suboptimizing an individual dialog box. Kostya was right on the mark in advising ...


91

Call it the email address. It's unambiguous. A user returning to your service will always remember their email. They may not remember if they configured a special username, however.


74

I would say that "New" is best in most situations, as it is short and distinct. A good rule of thumb is to look at the other options you will have in your menu. You want to make scanning fast, so you want to make each option as distinct as possible. Here is a crude example of what I mean: download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq ...


73

"Sort by date" is probably the most common option, but it's not the way that most people speak. Where possible, I prefer speaking like a human (as opposed to an engineer), and so I would prefer using something like: Newest first or Oldest first


64

The answer is in user interface guidelines for the system you use. For Windows Present the commit buttons in the following order: OK/[Do it]/Yes [Don't do it]/No Cancel Apply (if present) Help (if present) So Cancel is always on the right of OK button. For MacOS A button that initiates an action is furthest to the right. The ...


62

In addition to the related posts that JonW, called attention to, I think the biggest question to answer is using 'My' vs. 'Your'. We've had a previous question on the subject ("'Your' vs 'My' in user interfaces"), which is a great resource, but my favorite resource on the matter is the Yahoo Design Pattern Library. Yahoo advises to use 'Your' as the ...


56

The use of short words like Yes/No on buttons can be confusing if the user misreads the message on the dialog, especially if the messages are written badly. (So keep messages succinct and unambiguous in the first place) Having yes/no ok/cancel actually forces the user to have to read and understand the message before knowing what the options apply to. For ...


45

Ok I might be on to something: "New" is good for buttons that take the user to a clean "canvas", where the user can add his content. "Create" is good for buttons that "submit" the user's content or input (either into a database or to some public platform). In other words, "New" doesn't suggest that you're actually creating anything. It just sets the ...


41

A confirmation dialog (one that asks a question and involves no input) should have yes/no. For example... Do you want to cancel your account -- yes no Do you want to sign out -- yes no On the other hand, a dialog that represents an "action" and expects a user input, should have ok/cancel or <action>/cancel. For example... Set event date and ...


40

If it's clear, say it in the least number of words possible. If there is no confusion, then there is no problem. "Import image" - clear. "Create app" - clear. "Add description" - clear. For further reading, I suggest the Android Writing Style.


39

Clutter is problematic. Emphasizing the valid characters might be enough. E.g.: Valid characters are A-Z a-z 0-9 . _ -. Displaying them with different color might also help.


35

I think your own analysis matches Microsoft's own from the link I provided in my comment. To quote from Why do you have to click the Start button to shut down?: People booted up the computer and just sat there, unsure what to do next. That's when we decided to label the System button "Start". It says, "You dummy. Click here." And it sent our ...


30

Here is some advice : forbid characters only if it is absolutely necessary (I hate when I cannot use _ in my nickname) display a message only to the user who tries to use one of these. Other users won't be bothered if the user enter a forbidden caracter, just don't consider it and explain him why. download bmml source – Wireframes created ...


28

I'd be inclined to "Recommended Sorting", but since it breaks the "Sort by..." pattern, I'd choose either "Sort Automatically" which breaks the pattern only slightly, or one of my favourite terms for this kind of "magic": Relevance. So I'd go with Sort by Relevance. After all, what heuristic does is being more relevant to the user's interest.


27

Think "reading" metaphor. Westerners read left to right, our brains are conditioned to flow left to right. CANCEL is basically a step backwards (left) and OK/SUBMIT/YES/Etc., are a step forward (right).


26

Designers' over-sensitivity It is easy for designers to overthink things (and equally under-think things). I highly recommend reading this research paper: Petrie, H. & Power, C. (2012). What Do Users Really Care About? A Comparison of Usability Problems Found by Users and Experts on Highly Interactive Websites. Proceedings of Human Factors in Computing ...


25

The text should largely depend on the actual content itself. Is it time sensitive, like news, or is it content that will be relevant no matter when it is viewed? If it's time sensitive, it makes sense to use older/newer. If it's not time sensitive, previous/next seems like a better fit. However, I would argue that adding page numbers would increase the ...


24

I'd prefer the option you called "positive statement". The reason isn't only consistency. The other reasons are: Positive statement style is a great way to introduce the functionality of the application. So config dialog could partially play the role of software help and documentation. It tells to a user like: "I can do this, and this, and this...". The ...


23

You should use an empty alt attribute for images that are purely decorative. I'd argue that in the example you gave it is worth supplying an alt attribute that describes the image e.g. alt="Portrait of Jane Doe". @KitGrose mentions that including this text will also make the image searchable to image search engines such as Google Image. I reserve empty alt ...


22

No, just use the label for what is expected. It's easier to understand and clearer to the user if you use fewer words. Think of a registration form: Enter your e-mail address: or E-mail: From a user experience perspective, the more you cut down on the number of words, the better. Key words are preferred, since they convey the actual meaning to what you ...


21

Luke Wroblewski is the guru on this field. He has written an entire book on web form design (Web Form Design) and he published an interesting article on the label-issue some years ago. You can read the full article here: http://www.lukew.com/resources/articles/web_forms.html Summarization of the article: Vertical labels Should be used when: ...


21

The major problem with inline placeholder text is after filling out a number of fields, it is difficult or sometimes impossible to determine what the original purpose of that field was. Say for example you are filling out a form and decide to change your input, so you clear it out and then somehow you get sidetracked by a phone call of something else. Is ...


21

I think the major issue is having a single colour for action buttons and nothing explicitly indicating status. Colour is a very strong visual indicator and is more likely to be linked to status than a call to action. The toggle button is definitely ambiguous. You could use an Apple-style slider download bmml source – Wireframes created with ...


20

I would go with Dropbox's approach. 'Choose files' is clear enough to tell you the action it performs and concise enough to fit within two words. 'Select files' also works. When labeling buttons, try to explain what the button does. Are choosing files and uploading two steps or a single step? Since in dropbox's case, you choose the files and then press ...


18

Maybe "resume" will do. As for an icon I think a "play" icon is just fine.


17

My favourite method is the one employed by Stack Exchange, Google, Flickr, and many other large sites with a strong focus on UX: use their username / real name combination as a clickable link. This has the dual benefit of hinting to the user if they are logged in as someone else, ans is more personal than the [pronoun] Account approach. Combinations of ...


16

A number of issues factor into the perception of what a kilobyte is and how to word it. The IEC standard names are useless: As Jeff Atwood notes there is simply no industry acceptance of KiB/MiB/GiB. Hard Drive manufacturers and Macs are the only major players using the 1000 bytes definition and Hard Drive manufacturers have absolutely no incentive to ...


15

Some UI guidelines recommend always using Ok/Cancel dialogs rather than Yes/No. I, however, believe this is a huge mistake. Just for example, I recently saw a dialog with a question like "Do you really want to cancel your account?" and buttons labelled "Ok" and "Cancel". In this case, "Ok" meant "Cancel", and "Cancel" meant "don't cancel". At least in my ...


15

Ok/Cancel and Yes/No button is only acceptable when you're too lazy to think up of a better label for the action. An example of a good confirmation dialogs: This is LibreOffice/OpenOffice when you tried to close an unsaved document: the button's label should reflect what action that will be done. Also, never call any actions, such as ...



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