Subject: Gleanings: linkylinky
off to user testing, no time for chit chat. enjoy your links!
(a bunch are from the ever-delightful xplane.com/xblog)
Empowering users through user-centered web design
“In theory, the web is the ultimate user-empowering environment. In
practice, the very opposite is often the case. Many web sites fail to
empower users and in fact frustrate and confuse them because although they
offer the promise of information, services or goods at the mere click of a
mouse button, they are difficult for people to use. Problems associated
with the use of web interfaces are too often wrongly attributed to user
incompetence, when in fact it is poor design that is to blame.”
Computerworld: The Interface Revolutionary.
Q&A with Jef Raskin. It’s a human issue. I have yet to meet a computer user
who is happy with the way computers treat them. And most of their pain is
caused by bad interface design. That includes overcomplex software,
nonexistent manuals and help systems that themselves need help.
group usability testing
“With the increase of usage of the Internet many questions have been
proposed and many suggestions offered on how to design a webpage for
optimal readability. Unfortunately, the majority of “guidelines” or
“rules” for designing webpages have proven to be subjective and
Looking for Metadata in All the Wrong Places
“Andy King, editor of this fine newsletter, contacted me [Louis Rosenfeld]
recently with what he thought was a reasonable question. Knowing me as an
information architect with librarian roots, he wondered if I could help
him find a basic vocabulary of Internet and technology-related terms. He
was hoping to use these terms to better organize and label WebReference’s
content. Andy had looked at both Library of Congress and Dewey Decimal
subject headings (remember them from your library’s card catalogs?) and
found them wanting for his purposes. So he asked me if I could recommend a
quick-and-dirty alternative. What happens when you ask an information
architect a simple question? You get a long and complicated answer.”
Sanford Wallace, once the “spam king” of the ‘Net, is now backing an
advertising service which spawns windows when uses attempt to exit affected
Kathleen Anderson wants pop-up advertisements gone from the Net.
As chair of a Connecticut government committee, Anderson is charged with
ensuring state-run Web sites become accessible to people with disabilities.
She reviles the use of pop-up ads on mainstream Web sites such as AOL.com
and Netscape because the disruptive ads–which appear on Web pages
spontaneously–often confuse a blind person, for example, who relies on a
screen reader to hear content rather than see it on Web sites…. “Web
masters can find other ways of getting their message across, the advertising
or marketing, rather than taking control of your desktop, which is what they
do,” she said.
Adweek: The Peacock Portal.
But is that enough to keep them coming back? Neither his critics nor analysts
are convinced that his portal is a peacock and not a turkey. For all its
changes, NBCi’s biggest battles are still ahead of it. Its image, its revenue
stream, even its relevance are still in question.
Internet World: Deconstructing NBCi.com.
Peter Merholz and Jennifer Fleming. Fox focuses on its prime-time programs.
Warner Brothers serves up entertainment. How can NBC differentiate itself in
this crowd of network players? The plain-vanilla portal available at NBCi.com
is not likely to be the winning strategy.
APROPOS OF NOTHING
recipes: information architectecture in it’s most practical application.
Chai-Spiced Creme Caramels with Raspberries and Pistachio Phyllo Crisps, Gourmet
Coffee Dacquoise Hearts, Gourmet
Honeyed Panna Cotta with Dried Figs and Sauternes, Bon Appetit
Individual Chocolate and Peanut Butter Bundt Cakes, Gourmet