While many of the new designs are great for "younger" eyes, I'm finding it increasingly difficult to see various things within the scroll bars, tiny x's in the upper right corner are hard to see, and various other "minor" things that tend to be more difficult as you age.
I agree, contrast and information hierarchy are very important! If we have such problems in Vector we should try to fix them. I suspect we will all agree in the general principles, what would be really cool is to find and fix concrete UX problems in Vector, and help users to reach their goals.
Oh, and one last thing. We ain't tryin' to mimic OS X on some things are we?
Only when they do something good :-)
as usual I am late in finding this thread but it is so interesting I am curious how or where the discussion evolved. would be interested in the details.
Well, you guys are the first ones showing interest, we talk about this in IRC many times though. Discusion can go on here or in the mailing list, or privately even (but conclusions should be published somewhere for the community.)
I have been trying to learn on the topic when I get the time. What I have found is that often our assumptions about user goals and problems are wrong. You have to always corroborate your ideas with data. In practice that means we should drive usability tests. Thats pretty hard to do and sometimes costly. I think we could replace that with a users survey.
The second lesson I learned is "design with user in mind". We often try to make our applications to look good, or to act in this way or in another. Thats fine but we often forget about the user and the specific problem he or she is trying to solve. Always keep in mind that your goal is to help concrete users to solve specific problems! Often extra text, clicks, and controls are just obstacles. Do not add just for the sake of it, or because everybody else is doing it, or because its easy to do.
A third lesson I learned is that applications have to be predictable. Users will more likely reach their goals if they know whats going on, if the applications and the components work as expected, and if features and behaivor are easy to discover. Again, always backup your assumptions with data, ask your users or read studies driven by others about similar issues. So, shorty: talk to your users, help them to reach their goals, measure the results so you can optimize and focus where is required.
Would be awesome if we can turn all this crap into concrete TODO items
Some very interesting resources:
- This guy is awesome
- Elementary is an ubuntu with focus in design and UX
- Their HIG are very good and well documented
- The Redmond guys have one too
- I am interested in the "Wizard" topic now because the installer is one of those
- iOS guidelines. Often mobile is another beast, but the general principles are relevant. I like that mobile favours some kind of minimalism
- UX forum at Stack Exchange (Joel, author of the first link, is the founder)
- The guys from UXSpin have a book about UX design
Some work we have been doing for the installer: http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/8112/partitionsc.png