One of the biggest problems with our large digital photo collections is that too much of it sits around without ever being looked at again. And if we do, it’s often while sitting at a desk, rather than leaning back on a sofa and relaxing. At the same time, the screens in our houses often sit idle much of the time, when they could be displaying an endless slideshow of our photos.
Windows and Mac have photo library screensavers built in…
Last week I tweeted this:
Until a design is good, it is shit. After decades as a designer, I still struggle psychologically with this.
I’ve been a designer all my professional life, and throughout that time I would often hit a phase of despair, where I feel like a fraud, and where this feeling cripples my ability to concentrate, and I spiral into a cycle of procrastination and worse despair.
I keep telling myself, “I’ve felt like this before, and it has always turned out OK.” But then I answer, “Unless I stop procrastinating and do some work, there is…
I want to belong to a “church” where, from 10–12 every Sunday, I sit in silence in a congregation of others who are here, like me, to read a book without distraction. We bring our books with us, whatever we want to read — perhaps something difficult, that needs the greater degree of attention, or just something fun. We may also bring pen and paper, and spend the time writing or drawing. (We are all seated at tables or desks.) But we may not have with us electronic devices (with the possible exception of e-readers.) …
I have very little nostalgia for the old Design Museum building. Its location near Tower Bridge was always a real effort to get to, and while an attractive modernist icon, it always felt small, very much one of London’s “minor” museums — not befitting London’s reputation as a global design powerhouse. On 21 November it reopened at a new location in Kensington, and I visited on the opening weekend.
Back in 2014 I tweeted this:
UX axiom: when a feature is invoked more often accidentally than on purpose, it should be considered a bug
I’ve been meaning to revisit that statement for a while now. The link above refers to the following misfeature afflicting Mac users with external displays:
When the mouse cursor touches the bottom of an external display, MacOS assumes you want the Dock to be there, and moves it there from the primary display, often covering up what you were trying to click on.
I recently went to a fascinating IxDA (interaction design) meetup about in-car interaction design. Here’s a quick summary:
Duncan Brumby teaches and researches in-car UX at UCL. He described various ways car makers try to provide more controls to drivers whilst trying to avoid driver distraction (and falling foul of regulations).
I think most of us are sometimes confused by car user interfaces (UI), and with the advent of the “connected car”, are likely to be more confused than ever.
Modern in-car UIs take different approaches. Most cars use dashboard UIs with or without touchscreens. Apple’s CarPlay takes this approach…
Legendary user experience pioneers and ex-Apple employees Don Norman and Bruce ‘Tog’ Tognazzini recently aimed a broadside at Apple in an article titled “How Apple Is Giving Design A Bad Name”, linkbait calibrated to get the design community in a froth.
On the whole I think they are right. Apple’s design is getting worse, users are suffering from it, and they are setting bad examples that are being emulated by other designers.
The article has some weaknesses (over-long, repetitive, short on illustrations and with some unconvincing anecdata), but on the whole I think they are right. Apple’s design is getting…
Many people reacted defensively. I suspect most of us in UX roles still spend a significant amount of our time wireframing.
Couple of things are worth bearing in mind: Des works in-house at a product design company. This means many differences from the agency model — they are their own client, for one. And design is a continuous, on-going process, rather than a time-boxed engagement. …
I’ve noticed a worrying trend in web navigation lately. More and more websites are hiding their navigation — at desktop resolutions — under a single button, often the 3-bar “hamburger” icon.
They are doing this because it makes the website look “clean” — simple and uncluttered. Who wouldn’t want that? Or perhaps they are following the lead of some powerful role models, such as Google, or Medium. Or they are influenced by design for mobile devices, where small screens often require navigation to be hidden initially, and the hamburger icon has become ubiquitous. But they are usually wrong.
Web page elements that appear or disappear on hover should almost always do so with a slight delay. Why?