Is less self-defeating?

11 Feb 2010

So what concerns me is if this quest for creating simple software is hurting us. Are we creating a culture of users that require a dumbed down experience, at the expense of the increased efficiencies and productivity gains we can realize with more complex tools? Are we also stifling the creativity of the designers and developers who are afraid to provide useful features because of the fear that they may be complex or not immediately obvious?

Scott Blitstein from Less is Less


Show them where to look

1 Feb 2010

In advertising we will look at what the person we see in an ad is looking at. If they are looking out at us we will simply look back at them and not really anywhere else.

James Breeze from You look where they look

One wonders how well this works on the web when selling products and/or services. <img src="http://img.skitch.com/20100202-qqx1h628418c4wr1d45sic7pd9.jpg" alt="Carlos" /> What did Carlos make you look at? <img src="http://img.skitch.com/20100202-fst8xrudpxcgpt7kwahnp2238r.jpg" alt="Carlos"/>


Twitter usability

31 Jan 2010

This is a long post ~2k words and is intended for anyone who is involved with designing webapps and or is interested about how badly they are designed for normal people. In this case it’s about Twitter which is unique in that there are some conceptual barriers that people must first grasp before they are able to properly make use of the service.

Duncan Malcolm from Experiment: Twitter Usability

It's easy to take things for granted. As web geeks, we find web applications to be much more intuitive than they really are. Experiments like this are extremely humbling. We can do better as an industry.


Helping People Do "Real Work"

31 Jan 2010

The Real Work is teaching the child, healing the patient, selling the house, logging the road defects, fixing the car at the roadside, capturing the table’s order, designing the house and organising the party.

Fraser Speirs from Future Shock

Most of us use software as a tool to reach goals that exist outside the software. Good design makes the experience of using the software disappear and allows the person using it to focus on the "real work."


Predators don't take risks

15 Jan 2010

The truly successful businessman, in Villette and Vuillermot’s telling, is anything but a risk-taker. He is a predator, and predators seek to incur the least risk possible while hunting.

Malcolm Gladwell from The New Yorker

Another reminder to focus on small, measurable goals versus large, risky ones.


Gruber on The Tablet

10 Jan 2010

If you’re thinking The Tablet is just a big iPhone, or just Apple’s take on the e-reader, or just a media player, or just anything, I say you’re thinking too small — the equivalent of thinking that the iPhone was going to be just a click wheel iPod that made phone calls. I think The Tablet is nothing short of Apple’s reconception of personal computing.

John Gruber from Daring Fireball: The Tablet

Refreshing commentary on how our predictions about the new device from Apple are likely short-sighted.

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