Enterprise Software product – the console is web based. The product is built by two modules: - First module (Module A) has vertical menu (on the left side) with 6 buttons (Icon + text) - Second module (Module B) – I only have 2 buttons (Icon + text) instead of 6

On the one hand, I want to keep the same design between both modules, on the other hand I feel it’s wrong to build a side vertical menu as in module A for just 2 buttons – it create an empty space under the menu. How would you put those two buttons on the screen?

Module A:
enter image description here

Module B:
enter image description here

  • Can the user switch between the two modules i.e. Module A and Module B? – Mervin Sep 15 '14 at 9:26
  • Nope. Different sites. – Sharon Sep 15 '14 at 11:16
  • A guiding question: what exactly is the problem with the empty space? (I personally think that there's no problem whatsoever, but human nature is inclined to see such based on an instinct to consume every available resource, no matter if needed or not (see Parkinson's Laws) Maybe the empty space is triggering some subconscious alarm that there's some resource (space on the web page) which is not being thoroughly consumed.) – drabsv Feb 11 '18 at 12:34

My suggestion would be to keep the filters for Module B on the left hand side as well as that would ensure the user has the same consistent experience of experiencing the filters on the left hand side.This would reduce the cognitive load as the user is aware of where to go to filter down on the details. To quote this article

Lack of consistency in a UX design leads to added “cognitive load” for the user and breaks the “transparent to task” effect.

Cognitive load: used in cognitive psychology to illustrate the load related to the executive control of working memory (From Wikipedia)

The brain can only handle so much load (short term memory and thinking processes) and then beyond that becomes overloaded and thus distracted or slowed down. In the field of UX, cognitive load is more casually used to mean the thinking load a user must do in order to accomplish a task. This includes the combination of thinking load required to use the interface and the thinking load required to accomplish the task itself. Ideally we want the cognitive load required to use the interface to be tiny so that the user’s mental processing capacity can be mostly devoted to the task itself.

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This view can have the buttons aligned at the center part of the left pane in the window so that the elements that you create in the pane will grow from the mid of the screen which can be achieved through flex display in css. I guess this view will have the user's pointer hanging around the center of the pane so that even if they switch between the modules the mouse movements will be to the same point and will not have a major difference.

Hope this helps.

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