A few days ago, browsing my feeds, I saw an article title that really caught my attention. The title was “I’m boycotting intuitive interfaces“. John Pavlus explains the concept of intuitiveness and to some extend it reminded me my post on instincts, intuition and the famous… nipple! As John puts it, intuitive is a UI that feels familiar. It feels like you know how to use it. But the word itself might lead to different expectations and possibly fears.
Intuitive is not supposed to be something that senses your intends and acts accordingly. Or at least… it should not be doing so unless you know why, when and how it does it and have a certain amount of control on it. Read the rest of this entry »
Imagine the following scenario. You are in foreign country where you don’t know the language. You might be fluent in English but that doesn’t count too much because most people in the country don’t know English. You are list in the underground trying to find your way back to the hotel. You are struggling to find a map with English on it. You are struggling to find someone to talk and be understood so that he can help you. For many people this is a quite stressfull situation. Personally, I find it a bit amusing and it’s one of the “remember the time when we… ” moments that you tell your friends about and laugh your herat out. However, if you are not on vacations and you are on business travel and have to catch a really important meeting, I could see myself stressed too. Read the rest of this entry »
I will begin this year with a subject that came to me after a conversation with some good friends out there. I just hope that if they are reading this post they will find it interesting.
I was looking into the ideas of natural and intuitive user interfaces trying to find out what is the actual definition for each of these and how they relate and so on. After some search I expected to find some concrete definitions in papers but I was unlucky. I finally realized that definitions in such new domains are not that clear so I will attempt to describe them in my own words. Read the rest of this entry »
Elderly person using a smart TV
Why should people get sleepy while watching TV? Why shouldn’t a user friendly TV read our eye lids and take the courageous decision to either close or change program? Why shouldn’t the user friendly TV take the liberty to freeze the running of a movie to let us go to the toilet or alert us to go to the toilet in case we need to but are unable to see the risk? Why shouldn’t our user friendly TV adapt viewing settings so that we don’t need our glasses – a self-calibration of the presented images would allow the user to watch his or her favourite program without changing the settings.
So, the TV is a device that enables access to content but may also have decision-making capabilities. Access to content does not take place the way we have been used to: a child is not enabled to follow an adult film, same way as a manic depressive person is not allowed to have access to certain broadcasts, while a deaf person is given the necessary support through captioning and / or subtitling so that he / she may follow the program. Read the rest of this entry »
One of the worst things about the TV in general is the remote control. The person who holds the control has power! And the person who masters all its functions has the absolute power! To a more serious tone now, the remote also presents a problem for older and disabled users. The remote is hard to use, especially if it has fallen and broken or if the battery does not fit in very well. Then what about the confusion caused by having one remote that works with the TV, another that works with the Blue-Ray device and a third that works with the video recorder? Read the rest of this entry »