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GUI Design Revisited part II: Remember Me?

The very first article I posted for this blog was entitled Remember Me? in reference to a web site that inserted a new Remember Me? control into the login of their web site. I hereby declare that the phrase “Remember Me?” now references the fact that we become accustomed to GUI layouts and that designers need to Remember Us whenever they consider making changes! We — the users of their products, the reason for their existence, success, and future — need to be remembered before design changes are made. Designers: please don’t make us dislike you! We should not feel the need to ask you, “Remember Me?” each time you redesign your user interface. Some months after that original article, I posted the new article Revisited: Remember Me where I rejoiced that the previous error had been … Read entire article »

Filed under: Controls, GUI Design, Mistakes

GUI Design: Keeping Tabs

When I use the expression Keeping Tabs I mean the opposite of Losing Tabs—that is, specifically, losing the current location of focus when using the [Tab] key for navigation. Many web sites and web apps seem to no longer have any concern for this functionality. The [Tab] key on a keyboard was originally meant as an abbreviation for Tabulator, to be used for data alignment in columns, but GUIs have long used the [Tab] key to move between controls. I can’t understand why such a basic standard is ignored.   INVISIBLE FOCUS The CNN® web site found at cnn.com is an example of a GUI where the focus is hidden at all times. The only available clue about the current focus is the text in the status bar (typically at the bottom left of browsers) that displays … Read entire article »

Filed under: Controls, GUI Design, Mistakes