Posts tagged with "user centered"
The HTC HD2 (which I'm impressed with) uses its accelerometer to silence the ringer when the user picks up the device. Great for those that fumble around in their purse or computer bag because they forgot to switch to vibrate (use Locale on the Android platform!)
The MiFi from verizon (David Pogue review) is, in theory something you could just casually place in your backpocket and have a wireless network bubbled around you. I say this is different from cell phone tethering or dedicated cellular connections that connect to devices via USB, because this has the "hands off" Ron Popeil "set it and forget it" approach that I like. It's really the same solution we've seen for years, but this time presented in a different way.
There's a certain je ne sais quois to have this thing just always on despite whether your laptop or phone or desktop is turned on and connected. I suppose I could be convinced that it should/will become the next generation of tethering from a cellphone (assuming it could be set to be independently/always on, and that a battery can handle that usage) but for now I applaud the user centered approach.
Our office building recently upgraded (eye of the beholder I guess) to the Dyson Airblade. It's pretty novel the first couple of uses, although it doesn't exactly communicate its function as clearly as possible.
It operates using sensors and timers. The timer really needs one of those countdown displays you find at the automated car wash dryers. You know, as you're driving out of the carwash a big overhead/side dryer kicks in and a countdown begins letting you know how long you have? Well, it's the same idea here. In fact, the hand dryer works in pretty much the exact same way. You stick your hands in there and slowly pull them out, the airflow "squeegees" off the water from your hand as you pull them out.
The biggest gripe I have with it is in the sensors used to detect a hand is in there. I must have particularly small fingertips, because the Dyson Airblade will ALWAYS cut off just right as I get to the end of my hand (fingertips) causing me to walk out feeling like I just dipped my hand in a glass of water.
After talking with my coworkers, I've found that this is not an uncommon situation (thankfully, my fingertips are normal). In commiserating, we've all shared our workarounds for getting fully dry hands, all are a variant of the (thusly defined/coined) "Dyson Shuffle" and the "Dyson Flap."
- Dyson Shuffle: This action involves keeping one hand fully inserted into the Airblade while the other dries off, this allows one hand to dry while keeping the sensor active. Then, while dry, you move it back into the Airblade to dry the other hand. This looks a lot like a DJ working the ones and twos.
- Dyson Flap: Same idea, but this has both hands moving up, then you quickly move your hands in from the side before the sensor shuts off the device to repeat the process. This move looks sort of like Michael Phelps doing a butterfly stroke. Logic- two quick dries equals one full dry
Of course, all this is to illustrate the silliness of the whole matter. How about just repositioning your sensor to accurately detect the hand? or perhaps extend by an extra second or two the airflow before shutting off?
Admittedly, the available inputs (things you can say you have on hand) are pretty limited, and some of the recipes are a little condescending (an apple on its own? A cup of coffee?), but it's great to have this little service available for when you're stumped and pressed for time.
Thanks Virtual Hosting for the nod!
I was trying to find my way to a Stadium here in my home of Saint Paul MN to watch a Saint Paul Saints baseball game. I fired up the homepage and clicked on the ”Directions” link and was slightly annoyed to see directions given to me according to where I’m coming from, a trend that's pretty common for pages giving directions.
On the surface, it's a good idea; something I talked about doing before. They just happened to have a textbook illustration, complete with all the things you shouldn’t do if you’re going to provide this to your customers.
The most important thing is that they do not provide the address of the stadium on the directions page. At all. Not even in the directions. It’s kind of hard to miss a stadium, so that alone might be forgivable.
The other oversight is where the “corner case” that I mentioned comes in to play. The site gives you directions based on what direction you’re approaching from…but you don’t know where the stadium is so how can you know the direction you’re coming from? If you’re coming from another city, it’s likely you’ll be able to guess what direction Saint Paul is relative to your approach, and if you're familiar with all the freeways in the city, you might have an easier time to figuring out which direction to approach from based on the freeways listed. But then you'd have to read each one to figure out exactly which of the four sets of directions would work the best.
They should have included the address on the directions page, as well as an small map showing the stadium to take this from a "good attempt" at user centered directions to a great one.
Bonus: the "click here to see a map of Saint Paul" at the bottom of the page is completely worthless for finding the stadium. You have to cross reference it to the freeways and streets in the directions.
Bonus Bonus! The "Still need directions?" link at the bottom bottom of the page links to somewhere (literally) in the middle of the US.
I'm sure I'm not the only person who wraps headphones around my music player. It's convenient, I never misplace them, they don't get tangled. But well, I can't do much with my iPod while it's wrapped up, but then again, I don't really need to.
I wonder then, for using the iPhone as an iPhone and an iPod, Do you have to store your headphones elsewhere? If you wrap them, you might not easily be able to answer an incoming call, unless you just slide the cords/headphones off the end (as I do when I plug it into my truck's audio input), but then you have to re-wrap the headphones everytime you want to call/answer/email/text/surf/etc...
Are you supposed to always wear them? I know there's the mic that's built in, and it seems to me this setup would work really well when you're already listening to music. But if you're carrying your phone around all day and occasionally want to listen to music, it seems to me you'd be most likely carrying the headphones in either in your pocket or... well, anywhere else and I'm certain I'd forget them when I want them most.
Has this even been remotely an issue with anyone? Just ball 'em up in the pocket? Extra pairs of headphone laying around where you'd most likely use them?
Six members of Opera involved with Usability, User Experience and System Testing all took the time out of their busy schedules (providing you all with the best internet experience) to answer some questions on Opera and usability.
Usability and Systems Testing for Opera: (back row) Huib, Wolfgang, Kenneth
(front)Yenny, Gerður, Tami
Opera typically grows with the user, the more you use it, the more features you will discover, enable or customize.
Please click through to read insights from Opera UXP professionals discussing favorite usability features, challenges, accomplishments, and things that could be improved.
Older stuff we wrote...
My stove has a crappy UI
Mental mapping of a stove UI
Riff on riffs.com
Browser checking on websites.
Cable Co Menu guide
My cable box has the most frustrating UI
The phone you have a work sucks
- When will maps think like us?
- Nail clippers with a catch
- Bad Idea for a Software Interface
- Toothpaste Cap
- Lunch Soup Containers from Hell
- Turbo Tax Usability
- DAPs- Focus on Cord Management
- My posts on MNteractive
- A Brighter Outlook
- Short interview w/Donald Norman
- "Terms of Service" on different types of websites
- Vacuum cleaner
- New Spin on Voice Mail
- Mobile Phone Trackball- Great usability
- BlackBerry Pearl Review
- Pie Menus and Mouse Gestures
- iTunes as a podcast manager
- Collection of Usability Principles
- Web App Forcing Functions
- Techie Toys Series
Usability In the News -Usernomics.com
Around the Opera Community
Best Opera Community Group to date!