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108

You are totally right As with many other devices (eg the QWERTY keyboard) the hot/cold tap persists not because it's the most usable design, but because of: Cost since proper temperature control requires an electromechanical feedback loop design, or calibrated thermostatic valves which needs to be periodically adjusted or replaced. This drives up the cost ...


83

Excellent answers so far. I would attempt to connect the dots between recording and red button like this: Apart from the traditional warning usage, a red light has been used in many scenarios to represent on-going work - radio show room when on air, operation theater when operation is going on, etc. The reason behind that would be the same - it is highly ...


39

In an actual plane, the steering column isn't really pulled up or down. Instead the pilot pushes the steering wheel or joystick away to dive, and pulls it towards him to pull up. Same goes for games which you control with a joystick. You push it away to go forward, and back to go backward. This forward and backward motion is most probably why inverted ...


36

The Microsoft Office suite appears to have put a greater emphasis on Add-Ins. For default installations, none are included hence the splash screen only stays up for a very short time. However, for Office power users, they may have many Add-Ins (especially enterprise users who develop their own custom AddIns) which will significantly slow the startup time ...


34

The symbol on each button was created with references to sheet music and inventor's background. For example, the || in pause may come from the Japanese character リ and/or Caesura. The media control UI were first introduced by Swedish Engineer Philip Olsson while he was working in Japan. He also had a degree from Swedish design school. The glyphs were ...


33

I suppose it's mostly a question of how much money you want to invest into your fittings. In most cases you'll have one pipe for hot and one for cold water. The knobs then just open and close those pipes – I can hardly think of any easier / cheaper solution. However there are actually different solutions that do exactly what you describe: Visiting Canada ...


25

Very few isometric games have a keyboard control scheme. The few I remember playing that used the arrow keys to move treated a single key as an orthogonal direction. To get diagonal movement you needed to press two keys like down and right. Some even mapped all 8 surrounding squares to the numbers on the keypad (except 5) so you had a full range of motion. (...


22

The interfaces may look very similar to you, but they are constantly evolving, and have been refined for many years. Firefox in particular is very open about their UX process, and how they rely on user telemetry to understand how people use their browser. They don't simply copy features. They try to understand their users. In the early days, browsers could ...


20

An isometric view of a game doesn't have to be presented as a symmetric view. For example PacMania is pacman with a pseudo-3D isometric view, but still lets you use the left-right, up-down keys without ambiguity in their direction.


19

I can honestly say I have never seen a shower that has separate hot/cold knobs like you describe, and I've lived everywhere up and down both the east and west US coast. Every shower I've ever seen has two concentric wheels. The inner one controls temperature while the outer one controls pressure. Here's what they look like (although the labels around the ...


17

The asymmetrical design of the analog sticks is based on ergonomics and the typical use case. The left stick is at the neutral position for your left thumb, while the buttons on the right are at the neutral position for your right thumb. The vast majority of the time, you will be using the left stick and right buttons, so it makes sense that they are ...


17

Working as a sound designer in the games industry the response I have get from most programmers regarding this is that they simply don't realise that linear volume scaling is wrong. Once shown the difference they are converts (I've seen this multiple times). It's an incredibly easy (one line) fix that will make your controls feel significantly nicer and ...


16

Here is a nice explanation from What Grinds My Gears: Flight simulators were one of the first three-dimensional PC games where the mouse could be used as a controller, to control the orientation of the camera (in other words, the airplane). The most natural mapping of the mouse axes to control the "aircraft" was, of course, to simulate the movement of the ...


15

The record button is round because of the triangle the square and the rectangles being already chosen for the play, rewind, forward, stop and pause buttons, and the need for an eye-catcher for security reasons, that is preventing critical information erasing. When is applied, the red color is applied for the same reason.


15

The top of panels is usually reserved for controls over the panel itself, not the content of the panel. For instance, in your example you have the Full Screen icon in the top-right, which at a glance is strikingly similar to the close 'X' icon that would dismiss the panel altogether. Also, out of context it's hard to tell whether it'd work. As a single ...


13

There's no official pattern name for it but the NN/g termed it as "False Floors". They've written an article on it and have discussed how this practice leads to bad UX as it does not naturally encourage the users to scroll. Good designs shouldn't need an arrow to tell users to scroll. To quote from the article: When pages of any size offer little content ...


12

If your computer is slow/the application is taking too long to load, you have the option to minimize or close the launch of the application. It is all about making the user feel in control at all times. Most of the time the user has no control if he launches the application, look at adobe suit, the applications take a while to load and there is nothing you ...


12

I suspect it follows the development of machines to play compact cassettes (which were developed by Phillips). Wikipedia says that this was the first player that Phillips released to play the tapes Philips also released the Norelco Carry-Corder 150 recorder/player in the U.S. in November 1964. Here it is: and it has a round red record button. http://...


12

Hot and cold knobs work great, and everyone intuitively understands that turning the knob makes more water come out, ie more water pressure. The practical reason is it gives maximum control with the fewest parts. Also, the range for usable water pressure is not very large, and dedicating an entire knob to it seems to be a waste. Your solution would require ...


12

If you want it to be intuitive then you could be a bit clever about it. Add an item into the level a few squares away from them, and tell them to "Using The Arrow Keys, Move Forward Towards The Macguffin" Then whatever button they use to do this is the one you map to that direction. That way you're matching their own mental model of how the navigation ...


10

All similar systems ultimately converge to the most optimum solution. It's happened with browsers, text editors, IDEs. You'll find that very few tend to deviate drastically from the norm. This extends to real world entities as well. TV's, Phones, etc. The more drastic your deviation from the similar-system norms, the more steep the learning curve for your ...


10

They don't any more. They used to because it is the most mechanically simple implementation of temperature control. However, this is only historical. None of the other answers mention the legalities of this. The International Building Code (what most US local codes are modeled on these days) mandates that all new shower controls must be temperature ...


9

Both! Since you're not opening Excel as a software, you're making an Excel formatted file. But if this was a general action as optional exporting to a number of different output formats looking like "Export to [Excel|Text|Access|SharePoint]", I'd use just an export-icon since the next dialogue would let me make a choice of which output format to use for my ...


9

I assume it comes from the "ON AIR" broadcasting signs, which would traditionally have a red light to indicate that the studio was recording. I assume that other recording items then had a red light, since the "ON AIR" sign would be overkill for a small device. Eventually, the idea of a light to indicate recording would be too expensive, especially in an ...


9

The key thing is to ensure that there is no road-block for users who know the exact ID, but there is a good fallback for unprepared users. One familiar example similar to what you describe is airport selection on travel sites. There are hundreds; the unique identifier is a three-letter IATA code (e.g. LAX); a user may know the code, but is more likely to ...


9

Its a question of design consistency as people will migrate from one browser from another and if the browsers have similar icons and functionalities and user flows, the learning curve will be relatively lesser. To quote this article Consistent representation of these objects means the user recognizes them for > what they are when encountered. Consider ...


9

What names are there? Microsoft calls this a List Builder. As does the 2006 book 'Designing Interfaces' by O'Reilly. Google calls this in Material Design UI a "transfer list" (or "shuttle"). OpenFaces (an AJAX based component library) calls this TwoListSelection. Virtuosoft has a couple variations on what they call Dual Listbox. Codeplex also has a ...


8

I'm pretty sure a lot of us run into a similar pattern on a daily basis. Here's an example I see at least a couple of times a day; Photoshop: And this is what Google does: Or maybe you're on Github a lot: My point is, there are many different ways of doing this, and they all work just fine. The question to ask yourself is rather "what implementation of ...


8

Without knowing the full details I would think of a common pagination like < 5 / 23 > The previous/next arrows should be bigger than the text - and touchable. Although the swipe still should be the main interaction to go from one page to the other. I guess this would make things perfectly clear. Although you'll loose the option to directly jump to a ...


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