From: https://ux.stackexchange.com/a/19842

Giving users choices is a good principle, but it's not if they don't understand the choice. Have a look at one stupid dialog

The link there leads to:

enter image description here

They have even explained that database can be an alternative word for list.

So, what's stupid there?

2 Answers 2


The outcome for the choices given is not fully explained for the non-technical user.

It's quite reasonable to expect the user to want to minimise the size of the database AND maximise the search capabilities yet these two options are mutually exclusive. The reason for this is not explained at all.

The customise option is not explained either: how will the database be customised? To what extent will the database be customised? What effect will customising have on the database size and/or effectiveness?


Firstly, that was an example given in one answer, not a canonical statement of fact.

However, I believe that the point that was being made in that answer was that it is poor UX to present a user with options which they don't understand.

To extrapolate on that: the vast majority of Windows users will not understand those options, even if you devoted a page to the explanation (which would be poor UX). So it would be better to select a good default and give a more technical user the ability to get more detailed settings via an "advanced options" button.

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