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I bought a ZWave wall switch that looks like this :

zwave wall switch

Classy eh? EDIT thanks to @Darryl it has 4 independant buttons!

This wall switch responds to 4 actions for each of its buttons :

  • single press
  • double press
  • long press
  • release (not covered)

I therefore have 12 functions available (3 press modes and 4 buttons) for this wall switch. ZWave connection is not a problem.

I'd like to provide a way to show my non techie users which button does what when pressed somehow...

I'd use a model from what I have on my home's boiler but adding 12 functions grouped by type will take some place and be messy: boiler labels

(French column names on the left post-it : "still","blinking")

I am already aware that grouping functionalites is necessary for user remembering, for example

  • single press : alarm/security
  • double press : multimedia,...

Also, I think I should "keep" button configuration for myself and not tell my users, such as double press.

Here are some actions I am thinking for this particular wall switch:

  • turn on alarm system
  • SOS (sends me a SMS with "help" when pressed)
  • turn on the hifi system and play playlist #1
  • turn on the hifi system and play playlist #2 (and so on)
  • I'm home!
  • go to sleep! (turn off hifi system, lights,...)
  • turn on multimedia computer server
  • storm! turn off everything!
  • turn off hifi system
  • misc: free test button
  • misc: turn on my computer

Is there a good/easy/simple way to label these buttons and their type of press matching with functionalities?

  • My users (wife and children) are non techie but they can read and are not colorblind (I am, but its okay since I design the system)
  • I can do anything in my house, and this wall switch will just be glued on the wall
  • I suppose pictograms will not need further description (for example music notes for "turn on the hifi system" is enough)

Thank you for your help!

  • 1
    Ok, I'll be the UX guy and you be my user. Let's test this. Can you guess what these icons symbolize? (in context to your problem) i.imgur.com/OlIO7Lt.png I'll reply accordingly and we'll solve this together :) – Socrates Kolios Jul 20 '17 at 20:54
  • A few seconds to guess that these are the different states of button press ? In read order : single press, long press, double press, ?? (bottom right) – Goufalite Jul 20 '17 at 21:41
  • Correct! Bottom right is no press/release which is optional. Now, name the actions you'd like to go with them. – Socrates Kolios Jul 20 '17 at 21:52
  • I've edited my question to add new use cases. – Goufalite Jul 21 '17 at 5:37
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    Even with a dedicated switch for each function the panel would require too much thought to operate. There are too many disparate operations ranging between emergency situations (SOS and Storm!) and frivolous entertainment options (turn on the hifi and play...) - There is a strong possibility that the user will end up shutting down everything when they just want to play some music. – Andrew Martin Jul 21 '17 at 7:18
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Here's my go, if I've understood the brief! Even if it's not right, it's a really interesting conundrum!

I've not put any explanatory notes on purpose.

ZWave Label 1

Zwave 2

  • Interesting icons for the repetitive button action, even with 4 buttons it is quite clear – Goufalite Jul 21 '17 at 8:18
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    I haven't read the detailed description in the question which actions are available, so I'm kind of like a naive user of these two buttons. I think I understand the first two symbols you use (one press, two presses). I'm a bit unsure about three and four, though. I take it that the third is a press-swipe, and the fourth is a long press? – Schmuddi Jul 21 '17 at 12:34
  • Oh my god, this is a very important feedback! Yes it is a 4 independent button wall switch. There is no swipe feature. Editing my question! – Goufalite Jul 21 '17 at 14:54
  • Probably my fault from the icon I chose, was trying to work out a long press, will post another version shortly. – DarrylGodden Jul 21 '17 at 14:56

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