Questions tagged [psychology]

Psychological principles as they relate to user interface and user experience design.

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20
votes
7answers
4k views

The psychology of everyday shapes

We know a lot about colours and how they affect people, but what do we know about shapes? When choosing icons or logos, how do the shapes in them affect their perception? Does anyone know of any ...
15
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6answers
1k views

Why are nested elements scrolled to the opposite direction?

My question is about scrolling conventions, and spatial scroll conventions in general (even here it's only horizontal, but same applies for vertical scrolling). Looking at the below mockup, why is it ...
7
votes
4answers
407 views

Where can I read more about how the brain utilizes patterns?

I've been reading some cognitive psychology books and they all talk about the fact that our brains recognize and store things using patterns. Unfortunately, all these books talk only briefly about ...
4
votes
3answers
183 views

Should I display a “not available” option in my key, even when I know it will never be used

I've got a site which sells lots of different products. Due to the nature of the industry, it is necessary that multiple products can be displayed on screen at the same time. To save space, the ...
1
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4answers
1k views

Prefer buttons over text links when designing for mobile?

When designing for mobile, should one prefer buttons over text links whenever possible? I'm guessing buttons are better at encouraging tapping, whereas text links are increasingly becoming associated ...
7
votes
3answers
325 views

Using stock imagery with sensitive subjects

Something I've always wondered about is what effect would bad stock photography have on the user for sensitive subjects. I'm talking cheap, literal and cliche. I personally find this type of thing ...
2
votes
4answers
285 views

How to deal with different screen sizes when your theme is all about design

We know that not all people have the same screen resolution in their computer monitor. Some people prefer widescreen display in 15'', when other uses 17'' and more for their computer experience. I am ...
2
votes
2answers
114 views

Upon the launch of a new site - add big slide-down / lightbox explanation?

Upon the launch of say a new social media site - is it appropriate to do a big slide-down / lightbox to explain what the site is about - or to let users figure things out for themselves? Former: ...
2
votes
1answer
943 views

Why is SunBurst background so popular and are there any other ones?

I keep seeing SunBurst Background Pattern for years, literally! and it is still trendy. Why is it still so? Do we lack creativity for similar generic (or focus drawing) background patterns or human ...
10
votes
1answer
428 views

What is wrong with putting price timeline in e-commerce sites?

Why don't e-commerce sites, e.g. amazon, include price timeline charts for their products so that users will be persuaded on the discounts? Does it incur any culprits for usability or even for sales? ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

How many objects/things can the average person compare at once?

I recall reading that the average person can only effectively compare 7 things at once. Has anyone heard of this and can reference any studies/research done on object comparison? To give you some ...
0
votes
1answer
122 views

Usage for Widgets

Can we consider a widget as a good re-presenter of latest activities, e.g: Latest News, Latest Announcements, Latest Offers..and so on ? And Does it make sense to put a widget among the content? I ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Labels inside or outside text inputs? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: On forms, is inline placeholder text better than a label outside each field? Are there any advantages / disadvantages in placing ones labels outside ones text inputs like ...
10
votes
6answers
645 views

Should I style my buttons?

Are there any major advantages / disadvantages in styling ones buttons like Facebook, Twitter and StackExchange - vs. not styling them like Craigslist and 4chan?
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Spacing of items inside a panel (WrapPanel)

Many sites and applications using WrapPanel to display your items. Items are queued from left to right and when there is no more space tend to skip to the next line. For Example: What is the best ...
3
votes
8answers
864 views

What motivates people to keep on sharing ideas, develop new concepts and innovate on online innovation communities? [closed]

I'm very interested in crowd-sourcing and online innovation communities. Currently, I'm conducting research on what motivates users to continue sharing ideas, developing concepts, funding projects and ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

To lower user's cognitive memory load or not?

Naturally, it sounds like it is only best for our users if our design could reduce user's cognitive workload when performing a task. However, there are also theories that explain the need for a ...
2
votes
1answer
167 views

Best practices or resources about online assessment

I have a project to deliver an online assessment of a large number of users. The assessment is for a psychological research project, so the content is mostly self-description asked in a variety of ...
40
votes
5answers
4k views

Do users trust shortened URLs?

I've got some problems with shortened URLs personally; they're really easy to create and not descriptive, so it's fairly easy to make them link to malware. I'm talking about links like http://bit.ly/...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

How do drunk users act?

What effect does alcohol have on user behaviour? Alcohol is a part of many Western cultures and it's entirely possible that some of our applications will be used by people who have had a drink or two. ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

What are some examples of famous/effective skeuomorph UIs? [closed]

A skeuomorph user interface draws upon real world objects in its visual design in order to increase familiarity and the association between the product and its real world counterpart. Apple has been ...
1
vote
1answer
274 views

Currently designing a “Help” page, what would be considered too-much help to see on one page?

The page for "help" within the site is designed well. The site totals about 40 questions, which has been reduced down from 86. My objective is to simplify the user experience for viewing/navigating ...
73
votes
10answers
8k views

Why are progress bars horizontal?

Question sparked by this discussion. Why are progress bars almost always presented as horizontal lines that increase from left to right? Is this the best method of indicating progress (and why)? And ...
7
votes
2answers
535 views

Is there a theory on white spaces alone, or is it a consequence of other psychological aspects?

I'm doing a presentation on User Experience to my fellow colleagues (IT consultants) and have a section on white spaces / white spacing. Seems like searching for relevant content is not possible when ...
36
votes
13answers
10k views

Is it true that “the only 'intuitive' interface is the nipple”?

Everyone knows the famous quote (by Bruce Ediger or Steve Jobs, I'm not sure): The only "intuitive" interface is the nipple. After that it's all learned. It's an amusing gem, but is it really ...
2
votes
1answer
205 views

CLI and Recall Memory [closed]

Is there any evidence that using a command line interface will improve a user's recall memory? or... Do users with better predispositions to recall abilities do better with command line interfaces?
2
votes
1answer
297 views

Advantages of big forms (especially in ecommerce)

What are the advantages or disadvantages using big forms? (especially in ecommerce) I notice sites like Stack Exchange are using big form input fields with big bold labels inside of them (...
32
votes
10answers
1k views

How do you make users vote objectively and not from emotions?

I've seen on Youtube many informative videos on massacres and natural disasters where users don't vote objectively. Rather, they vote based on their emotions, which is why these videos always have a ...
52
votes
12answers
13k views

Why don't users want to see adverts relating to products/services they might be interested in?

As we all know, Google's content display network, as well as many other successful setups rely on delivering targeted adverts to users to increase the chances of adverts falling in front of the ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

How to Find the Best Icon to Represent a Concept?

I am developing a visual programming language, and after reading this paper it looks as if icons are a very good solution to improve the language and increase understanding. But since I am a ...
5
votes
2answers
970 views

Why are modern ads so fast-paced and flashy compared to older ones?

I once took a class in television production at my local cable studio, and one of our assignments was to go and watch TV with the sound off and pay attention to the ads. The lesson was to look at how ...
68
votes
29answers
7k views

Examples of placebos in UI design?

This is purely a curiosity question but one I thought would be a bit interesting. Is anyone aware of placebos in use on popular web sites or applications? Either intentionally or unintentionally? ...
14
votes
4answers
387 views

How to leverage team effects in HCI?

Humans and Computers can act as if they were a team. Clifford Nass shows in his experiments that even though we would deny it, we treat computers as little humans ("social actors"). In his chapter ...
1
vote
1answer
257 views

Patterns in thinking driving UX design? [closed]

Ok, this question will be tricky. We were having a discussion among some colleagues, and I came up with the hypothesis that most of the current-accepted UX design patterns are mostly based on our ...
22
votes
2answers
970 views

Why do some apps feel “heavy” while others feel “light”?

I have come up with a new concept and that is that every application or interface has a 'heavyness factor'. Let me give you an example: Google chrome feels 'light', it loads fast, doesn't take long ...
2
votes
3answers
290 views

corporate websites, stock photos, and intangible products

When I see a corporate website making use of stock photos, especially stock photos of supposed customers grinning their faces off or employees deep in thought, the site's credibility goes down a notch ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

What examples are there of Operant Conditioning in UI? [closed]

Like many cars, my car makes an annoying beep when you start the car with your seatbelt unbuckled; plugging in the seatbelt immediately ends the noise. I used to find this annoying, but I eventually ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

How do you calculate the cognitive memory load requirements of an interface?

If you break an interface down into elements and possible actions, how do you calculate the memory load requirements of an interface? Further, how do you relate the existing familiarity of an element ...
4
votes
4answers
530 views

How to prevent grey/black lines after effect?

I have made some new design for my private blog (a black design). However, If I now read a blog piece and then look around I see around me all kinds of black/grey horizontals bars as after effect, ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

Correct terminology for “please the interviewer” bias?

I'm pushing usability testing within my workplace by performing some Steve Krug style usability tests, which have gone down so well that the product owner now wants me to add some marketing questions. ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

How does a “visitor counter” on a web site affect user experience?

Many amateur sites have a "You are visitor number X" counters on them. What effect does this button have on visitors to the site? Does it increase their trust in the site?
3
votes
3answers
327 views

How much time is lost by waiting for GUI?

After asking the question Will faster GUI always make one more efficient?, I understood that there is a lower limit to the amount of time lost due to the GUI not responding. My interpretation of the ...
9
votes
3answers
447 views

Should we call our achievement system something else?

The company I work for has two public sites; one is just our main WWW site and the other is a site dedicated to our members. I'm a developer there and I'm working on an achievement system for our ...
6
votes
2answers
467 views

How can I encourage users to authenticate?

I am working on a post-sale customer support project for a US high street retailer (for the rest of this post I will refer to them as 'Jon's Cellphones'). The program will enable customers who ...
2
votes
1answer
184 views

How important it is to consider the background of audience while designing a web GUI?

While we have to develop web applications for general public, sometimes it happens that we have to target a specific type of audience. I'll use a theoretical use case to elaborate my question: A ...
19
votes
5answers
713 views

Will faster GUI always make one more efficient?

Are there any studies on whether one will actually get more done during a days work if delays went down i. e. from 10 ms to 5 ms for each update. My point is that if we are already working at the ...
13
votes
3answers
900 views

UX and design for Gamification of Collaborative Learning

What are proven gamification techniques that promote collaboration? I don't mind whether the specific techniques come from educational sites, or pure game sites or some other source. I want to ...
10
votes
4answers
973 views

Resources for learning Gestalt principles

I've seen the Gestalt principles or laws referenced often when it comes to graphic design and even UI and UX. Is there some definitive guide, book or original research about this subject that I can ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

How do you observe body language and facial expressions in user testing?

When user testing how do you record positive or negative body language? Do you use observed shifts in body language or facial expressions to consciously probe further about what the user thinks or ...
6
votes
8answers
398 views

What's the difference between what's best for the user and that what the user is used to?

See title, this needs to be at least 15 characters