Hot answers tagged

196

I'm not sure there's a cultural difference, so much as a mechanical difference. Radiator thermostats are valve mechanisms, which are tightened by screwing clockwise and loosened by screwing counterclockwise. That is to say, you loosen the valve by turning it counterclockwise to allow more hot water into the radiator. Knobs and dials on electrical devices (...


152

I think the direct answers to your question are covered by the others, but it might be beneficial to provide a visual hint to the user. For example in a car heater you have a visual indication of changes as the knob moves. An alternate solution might be to use a vertical slider/buttons where up might more clearly mean increasing the temperature.


45

Generally speaking, disruptions and distractions negatively affect human performance, a common finding in cognitive psychology. Many studies have shown that distraction greatly increases task time on a wide variety of tasks. There also exist many Quantitative studies showing task performance is negatively affected by distractions (note these figures are ...


28

As you rightfully pointed out there are a lot of articles which mention the increase in productivity levels. To quote this Computer Services Auckland Blog - Pulse IT Blog A University of Utah and ATI Technologies survey of 108 university & non university personnel using Dual Screen monitors reported increases of productivity with 33% fewer errors,...


20

The general rule of thumb for usability is to start off with no feedback, but to then display some busy indicator after 200ms, and if the process normally takes 5 seconds or more to present a larger feedback element (usually with a time elapsed timer, but preferably not with a progress bar unless you're very sure how long it will take). If something is ...


20

A good thing to take advantage of here is the number line. The number line almost universally increases from left to right. You could use that analogy to unambiguously show your user which way to increase or decrease the amount of the “thing” your application deals with. Rotating knob The problem with a rotating knob (from now on the tap model) is that you ...


18

Why don't you try something like this. Once the user clicks on the item to drag just highlight the valid and invalid sections like above. I would suggest you do it as soon as user clicks (before starting to drag), this will actually a pre cursor for the user, where to drop the item. In the approach mentioned by you, the user will actually drop the item and ...


14

There are two psychological key aspects that are in play when it comes to this matter. Users want to feel as they are in control Users (people) want the ability to choose The I'm feeling lucky feature does not cater to either of these aspects. It is true that the user and the SEO will agree on the most suiting search result on a majority of the time. ...


13

I believe you can visually create the knob however you like, without confusing users, by creating a common pattern of movement. Most audio production software I've used (i.e. the kind of software where you've often got lots of knobs that do lots of things, and would simply get out of hand, in terms of screen space, if they were all long sliders) simply has "...


12

Good question but a ticky one to answer :). Here would be my inputs considering I just broke into the HCI field a couple of years back or so: Understand that HCI is not about just graphic design or Information architecture or interaction design or user research. You could work as a developer and still have an active interest in human computer interactions ...


12

One idea: when the dragging starts, gray out the box and then if the user does drag over that region, make sure the mouse cursor indicates (red circle with a cross?) that region can't be dropped on. And extending that idea further: when the dragging starts use a red or gray to indicate it can't be dropped on, but also maybe use a green or some other ...


12

It's a good combination of skills! UX + coder is an extremely desireable profile here in San Francisco. There a number of reasons for this: Modern app development is a lot less siloed than it used to be, with small sprint and scrum teams operating cross functionally and following the life cycle of a product from conception through design and ...


11

One big advantage for software developers is that you can have your application running one one screen and your development environment running on the other. This means that there are hardly any issues when you have to switch your attention from one to the other. Having both things visible at a reasonable size at the same time makes it much easier and more ...


11

Sometimes your users and frustrated but they don't know how to express it or they're too polite to do so. Their expression might show that they found that form annoying, even if they tell you it's great! In addition the "major" facial expressions have been found to be largely innate and not bound to cultures, in fact many animals display similar facial ...


11

One situation of gameification that had poor results was Google Image Labeler. The premise was simple: in an effort to improve the quality of results from Google Image Search, two players were randomly paired and then shown an image. They had a time limit to create tags for the image and would score points if they had matching tags. The rationale was that by ...


10

I tend to deliberately avoid the situation with a variety of alternatives, including, but not limited to the user and they. And in any case, it simplifies the issue a bit because once you use he or she you have to concern yourself with use of his, her, hers, etc. I am not alone: The Microsoft user experience guidelines is about 880 pages and refers to he ...


10

Alan Cooper makes the point IIRC specifically in The Inmates are Running the Asylum (coincidentally also using an ATM example) that a source of poor UX is that computers do not interact i.e. "converse" like real people. e.g. You: "Withdraw $200" Computer: "Insufficient funds" You: "Check balance" Computer: "$187.34" with a human You: "Withdraw $200" ...


9

The "OS X Human Interface Guidelines" on drag-and-drop can be found here: https://developer.apple.com/library/mac/documentation/userexperience/conceptual/applehiguidelines/TechnologyGuidelines/TechnologyGuidelines.html#//apple_ref/doc/uid/TP30000355-SW9 The guidelines go into quite a lot of details, but you will want to highlight areas that the file can be ...


8

I am wary of any solution where the user has to remember that inputting x really means y. If the "infinite" or "unlimited" state can't be unambiguously represented by the spinner control I would consider using another one specifically for the "unlimited mapping" use case. Perhaps have another checkbox for unlimited that, when selected, disables / greys out ...


8

Some conventions are influenced by local custom, and others may be particular to a field or framework. In the field of mathematics, for example, positive direction is assigned to counterclockwise rotation, and negative direction is clockwise direction. If your app controlled the angle of a telescope, you would be wise to follow this convention. In three ...


7

The idea that Help is for beginners is misguided. Novices don’t use help; advanced users do. Novices don’t use help because: We are a victim of our own success. We’ve made apps and web sites that users can use without Help, so that’s what they expect. And, indeed, an app should be designed so that the average new user can be productive without opening help ...


7

I have found that some of the works by Mihaly Csikszentmihaly is a really good start. His understanding of flow is of critical importance. The point is that the flow of a task is critical, and dialogs - or anything else - that interrupts this flow is bad in terms of performance in completing this task. His classic book Flow is a good start. Of course, if ...


7

It's an updated version of waiting icons dating back to the first GUIs and browsers, which themselves are used to indicate either the system or application status. Cursor icons to indicate system status The Xerox Star workstation used an hourglass to indicate the machine is busy and unavailable for other activities. Changing the cursor was chosen to ...


6

I think designing for touch first could be a good general strategy for websites. It seems many designers, myself included, find it easier add features to an existing design than to remove them. So designing an application without assuming a pointer (the touch version), then adding pointer embellishments for the traditional computer version seems like it ...


6

Is the reality that most UX designers/researchers start in visual/graphic/web design and move into UX? This varies a lot from market to market. In Minneapolis, where I currently work, the vast majority of "UX designers" have backgrounds in visual design. But: As much as anything, this is because there are very few people in this market with a background ...


6

I would suggest adding drag handles on each block and let the user decide the ordering. You'll only need to ensure that no matter the order of blocks, the first block will always be an if block and the remaining blocks- else if. Refer the image for more details This way the user will come to know upfront that the blocks are drag-able, both on desktop as ...


6

When you can, be redundant in your feedback. In this case you have 2 significant elements, the dropped item and the drop receiver, and both of those can provide feedback, get lighted up or tuned down. If drop isn't available make both the cursor indicate that and the (would be) drop receiver indicate that. The cursor can indicate that by become a circle ...


6

I would recommend using positive UI feedback to tell the user where dropping is allowed. For any specific selection, there are usually one or two regions which are valid drop targets. Highlight those and allow other areas to fade into the background. Here's an example from Atlassian Jira: Transitioning an Issue As soon as the user begins dragging the ...


5

I would like to contribute by pointing to an extract of Apple's iOS UX guidelines: People appreciate being able to accomplish a self-contained subtask in a modal view, because the context shift is clear and temporary.


5

The obvious issue with the 'I'm Feeling Lucky' button is that it doesn't do anything useful. (ie it doesn't provide any information that you can't get by pressing 'Return' - which is always easier than having to pick the mouse up and press on a button) If Google were to remove it one day, I'd be surprised if anyone noticed.


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