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48
votes
33answers
5k views

What are common UI misconceptions and annoyances? [closed]

I often use applications and electronic devices for which I think: "Why on earth did they engineer that thing as it is? They must have known that it is a pain in the neck to work with". On the other ...
55
votes
14answers
3k views

How do I get users to read error messages?

If your intended audience is nontechnical you find yourself at a severe risk that your users will plain ignore the carefully worded error messages, either staring in shock at them, calling and yelling ...
5
votes
4answers
724 views

Dynamic required field validation

Let say we have a form with 50 or so elements. It is a data entry form and is in the format the user is expecting based on standardized industry paperwork. My question is should required fields ...
53
votes
15answers
9k views

What are some great web-based prototyping tools? [closed]

I'm looking for a list of web-based prototyping tools and I'd like to build one up here by using StackExchange's democratic voting system. There are already some lists around the web, notably these ...
16
votes
6answers
5k views

Required field validation

How should required field validation be handled visually? Note: assume asterisk is red *Name:[_______________] or Name:*[_______________] or Name: [_______________]* or Name: [____red bg____ ]...
22
votes
7answers
16k views

How long should the delay be before a tooltip pops up?

I'm working on web site in which a "ribbon" submenu pops up as soon as the mouse touches one of the main menu items. I'm trying to explain to the designer that it should wait until the cursor has ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

“Clear all” button history

Has anybody ever used "Clear All" button on the page? Maybe someone know the history of this "magic" UI component. I opened my eyes after this answer.
14
votes
5answers
3k views

Left-handed persons and usability

I have never seen any UI that depends on what hand a person prefers. I have never seen any options or profile settings for left-handled persons. Maybe it is a strange question, but I have to ask it. ...
7
votes
3answers
527 views

Progressive disclosure techniques to allow advanced simplicity for web apps?

What progressive disclosure techniques where the information and options given starts out small and lets the user decide what they want expanded on can I use in a web app?
74
votes
31answers
6k views

Common web app usability gotchas? [closed]

What are some common mistakes regarding usability for web applications?
19
votes
2answers
2k views

Where should the “preferences” item go in a desktop application?

I find that the "preferences" menu item is always in a different place, and often under an arbitrary name which always makes it a pain to locate unless you're already familiar with the software. I ...
27
votes
13answers
2k views

Is it better to prevent a forbidden action or display an error/explanation message?

There are multiple examples, so I'll pick a specific one to focus the question. Let's say a user can have specific characteristics (or permissions): Admin, Virtual, External, Financial, etc. To ...
6
votes
5answers
319 views

How much should we show if the user clicks the end of a long list of pages?

Let me give you example of what I mean by a long list of pages: So when you click 19 it has to determine how many new pages to show and how many old pages not to show. For example: How many new ...
12
votes
9answers
4k views

How and when should you use animation in your application?

Sometimes applications can benefit from animations in the UI. What tips do you have for determining when you should use animation? How can you maximize the usefulness of animations and avoid misuse?...
7
votes
6answers
851 views

How much should be on the homepage of a website?

Some websites I've noticed hardly have much on their website's homepage (i.e. google.com) where as some have a lot on their webpage (i.e. msn.com). Neither of them look good to me (google has too ...
6
votes
3answers
407 views

Its good , bad or neutral from psychological point of view to place a cart on the bottom of a page

I am thinking a lot the matter of the position of the ajax cart. I have place my temporary show cart on the bottom of the page. This is just an information for the user when its add products on the ...
11
votes
3answers
333 views

From the perspective of an UI (or user), what is an atomic action?

I am creating a lot of UIs that contain multiple levels of objects. An example would be for instance a purchase order. A purchase order has information regarding the order itself, but it also contains ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Are there any tests that can be used to measure the quality of an UI?

What are the criteria that are used to measure the quality of an UI, or compare different UIs with each other?
14
votes
5answers
1k views

What methods do you use to test the usability of an API?

Testing the usability of a programming interface poses a lot of challenges. It has a very different feel than testing a graphical interaction. The user can do almost anything at any time, as opposed ...
5
votes
5answers
3k views

Where are good places to display ads on a webpage?

Where on a webpage is the best chance that a visitor will notice an ad and look at it?
3
votes
2answers
311 views

In a web application, what can I do to allow error messages to be efficent and functional?

While alerts force users to react, sometimes the widget gets lost behind other windows and then blocks the whole application. What other ways can be used to make sure a user will take notice of an ...
12
votes
6answers
729 views

What are the common idioms for the drop portion of a drag and drop operation?

I'm only concerned here with the other half of a D%D operation, the drop. What are the common idioms to communicate to a user they can drop? And which are the "best" and in what situations? In ...
31
votes
13answers
4k views

Tab Overflow: What to do when I run out of space for yearly tabs?

I have page that lists previous recipients of an award, with tabs separating each year's winners. Every year there are forty recipients. The recipient's name is listed, along with his or her job ...
13
votes
5answers
258 views

At what point does interactive wireframing become redundant?

At what point does interactive wireframing become redundant? How much of the site do you really need to create (using tools such as Axure), before you can call it a working prototype? Working on a ...
8
votes
4answers
352 views

Flash, Silverlight and Accessibility

Simple question, although the answer probably isn't... Do Flash or Silverlight offer accessibility options? Should we ever use these if we are trying to build a truly accessible site?
7
votes
1answer
757 views

User accessibility for mobile applications [closed]

I want to make my mobile web app, iPhone app, and Android app more accessible. What should I read first to learn about best practices for mobile accessibility? Are there any summaries of the ...
14
votes
5answers
10k views

Multi step form vs single complex form

For a website that sells things, it's often needed to fill in a lot of information. When it comes to these types of forms you want the user to complete which one is the best? A single form with all ...
1
vote
5answers
193 views

Best image format [closed]

What is the best image format for a web page and for a desktop application? I like png format. Is it good for both?
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Default button OK or Cancel

What is the most preferable default button for submitting a form (like a login page)? OK or Cancel?
5
votes
2answers
864 views

What size should I make my icons so that people with some degree of visual impairment can use my application?

My application has to cater for people with a degree of visual impairment. Should I have larger icons throughout or have an option that allows the user to select the icon size (small, normal, large)? ...
4
votes
6answers
574 views

Best way to display numerous dates on a data form?

I've got the task of finding a way to display numerous (10) dates on a data entry form. They pertain to the dates that certain paperwork was received, acknowledged, evaluated, etc. All the dates are ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

Tips to give the UI more of a professional and polished look? [closed]

Currently developing a WPF application with a completely customised UI. Just wondering if anyone has any tips to allow the UI to be unique, but still look professional and polished.
57
votes
9answers
12k views

How to visualize the possibility of drag'n'drop?

My web application contains a list of elements, which can be sorted by drag'n'drop. How should this feature be visually represented to users?
8
votes
4answers
450 views

Built in user guides

I want my web application to be self-explanatory. There are input fields and whole pages which need some paragraphs of explanation. How to integrate these user guides to my application? How to make ...
8
votes
2answers
497 views

How do you currently manage wireframes and storyboards for software releases?

I'm very new to wireframing in an Agile environment (2-week sprints). My wireframes and storyboards contain features for immediate release as well planning as for future releases. I'm using Visio, ...
54
votes
11answers
54k views

Is there an optimal font size?

For most website projects I've been involved with, the font size for the bulk text is usually 12px - 13px, but I'm wondering if this is a good size. I remember reading an article saying that font ...
10
votes
2answers
27k views

Android List View - delete row button, delete selected button or delete from item click menu?

Android List view activity with item rows. User needs to be able delete some rows. I know standard way in Android is to use item click menu. But it's 2 clicks. Is it best way?
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Google Drawing - Wireframing? [closed]

I just read an article about Google Drawing (part of Google Docs) and how useful it is for wireframing. Do you have experience with Google Drawing for wireframes, that could give feedback on how ...
7
votes
8answers
2k views

Best practices for a sidebar on a blog

I see a lot of blogs that seem to have really cluttered sidebars, with a ton of additional widgets, navigation, etc, that I never find myself using. What are some tips for things that make good ...
9
votes
6answers
2k views

2 row navigation vs. dropdowns

I've seen two different types of navigation bars when a site requires nested navigation, one where hovering over a link drops down an additional menu, and one where a second horizontal bar is ...
5
votes
6answers
717 views

Layout suggestions for social media sharing page

I need to make a "Share This Site" page that offer all the regular social sharing mediums and send to a friend email option. With Facebook like facebook share ReTweet this Digg Buzz delicious email ...
6
votes
3answers
740 views

Complex Purchase Order Forms - do you have any advice or good references?

Let's say you need to design a purchase order form that is more complex than "usual" and has multiple elements affecting the final price: Choose between several tracks (e.g. Basic, Standard, Premium, ...
20
votes
5answers
387 views

Tools for checking accessibility compliance [closed]

As part of my website designs, I like to make sure that I am adhering to the accessibility standards (Section 508, UK Disability & Discrimination Act, etc...). Can anyone recommend any tools/...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

Is highlighting important words a good idea?

Is it a good idea to highlight the important words in a text on a web page? What impact does it have on the reader? Does it help to understand the text or does it disturb?
6
votes
8answers
671 views

Accessible CMS software [closed]

My company needs to incorporate some CMS software into their public web site. We want software that produces semantic markup to maximise accessibility. Can anyone suggest any? At the current time, ...
19
votes
8answers
8k views

Are there any good resources about designing touch screen interfaces? [closed]

I am not talking about phones or iPads or other "gadgets". I am talking about applications like kiosk systems (POI - Point of Information/Info Terminals) or HMI (Human Machine Interface). All UI books ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the best eCommerce add-to-cart flow? [closed]

I'm working on an eCommerce website. I found two predominant approaches as to what happens when buyers click the add-to-cart button: Send them to their cart where the main action button is "Checkout" ...
12
votes
7answers
1k views

Saving & restoring undo stack — good or bad?

In a sovereign desktop app with multi-level undo/redo (ie Photoshop, Word, etc), would being able to save and restore the undo history of a file with the file itself be a good thing or a bad thing? My ...
80
votes
16answers
15k views

Do you need a search button with a search box?

On websites with a search box, should you add a button they can click on, or will users understand a search box like on this site? The target group is not very technical, such as women aged 40-60.
33
votes
9answers
5k views

What resources do you use to find good color combinations? [closed]

My background is in web development, not UI design. I have no problem creating the layout and getting it pixel-perfect, but I can never figure out what colors to use and where. I have seen projects ...

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