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My company is bidding in a government tender for providing urban bicycle rental facilities in a few cities. As part of the system, we want to illustrate some screens and one of the screens is a list view.

Assuming we are going to have hundreds of docking stations, there wasn't a plan to hand-pick names for each one of them.

From the user side, how critical is it to have a name for each station displayed in the list (as opposed to the station number for example)?

To make sure this is not opinion-based, any reference to studies would be highly welcome.

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A list even if you name it would be pretty useless without context. A map view would be the right way to go.

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If you display them in such way that they can be distinguihshed from each other, then it is fine not to use names. For instance, if you display a map with docking stations having different locations, it is fine. But if you just display a text list without any further distinguishing info, this will be bad.

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To be able to make a really great system, you should always think about what the underlying motivation behind a feature is. A simplified example:

Who uses this screen?

Is it the end users that wishes to rent bicycles? Is it the employees at the company that provides the bicycles?

When do they use it?

Is it to rent a new bicycle? Is it to return an already rented bicycle?

What information do they need?

Number of available bicycles? Map Location? Street name? Capacity at the docking station?

What assumptions have you made about the users or the proposed solution?

Have you for example assumed that most of the users share their location, or have local knowledge about the neighbourhood?

When you have gone through this thought process, it is easier both to come up with good solutions, and to get qualified suggestions from this community.

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I agree with Cristian Negraia - a map view would give much better context.

Is this an app? If so you could look to how parking apps do it and use the user's location to show them the closest stations. If they need to find a station near to their destination, this would follow the same pattern, but with the user inputting a target zip/post code and the app showing a short list of the closest stations.

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