• Top Posts

Adobe Photoshop Express in Firefox: Tripple Booooo just on one page!

Today I was playing around with Photoshop Express in Firefox (v. 2.0.0.17).
At first look: nicely looking user interface written in Adobe Flex (oh, yeh, that’s for sure!). This “black glass” theme looks more appealing than the standard Flex theme (“dirty green”). Ok, let’s stress test its UI a bit; I will start with simply resizing browser window. Ta-da! It immediately shows 3 UI failures:

Booo 3 times

Just 1 page: Booo 3 times

UI bugs overview

1. Horizontal and Vertical sliders should never appear in the top navigation area. Period. Check out W3C’s CSS definitions for min-width/max-width to get a clue what are they used for.

2. Left extended menu looks like “Accordion” UI widget however it is non-clickable and non-collapsible. There is some stuff hidden off-screen below, which cannot be seen on a standard laptop screen with 1440×900 resolution. Vertical Slider for the menu will be useful in this case.

3. Browser Vertical slider never appears when the user resizes browser window which looks pretty lame:

UI implementation sucks

UI implementation sucks

Conclusion: Close, but no cigar, folks. Design Fail Factor: 5 (out of 10)

Bookmark and Share

UI design is supposed to improve with time.

No “design fail” type blog would be complete without some good old Vista bashing. So here’s some:

Two clicks instead of one.

Two clicks instead of one.

If you try to copy several files over some existing files, all previous Windows versions would ask you whether you want to overwrite file1 and would provide you with choices: “yes”, “yes to all”, “no”, “cancel”, so if I want to overwrite all files (which is the most common situation), I’d just click “yes to all” and be done with it. In Vista I have to first go to the very bottom of the huge dialog and check “do this for the next N conflicts” and then click “Copy and Replace”.

Clearly, this “do this for the next N conflicts” thing provides an extra useful feature – that is, rename files instead of overwriting. Cramming the same thing into the previous style dialogs would be unrealistic: the dialogs would have to have 6 buttons: “yes”, “yes to all”, “rename this”, “rename all”, “no”, “cancel”. Too much, I agree, but then again, how often do I have to rename the files, especially in the stupid default manner, like “file1(2)”? If I want to keep the files I’d rather move them to another folder, so the copy dialog could have had this new feature accessible through extra clicks, keeping the most common functionality in 1 click. For example, they could just have a “show advanced options” button and add their renaming schtick there. Moreover, that would give an opportunity to provide fancier renaming options, not just append a (2) to the file name, but something brutally powerful, based on regular-expressions.

Or I guess that’s too much to ask 😐

Bad and Good Design example in 2 pictures

Bad and Good Design examples just in two pictures.

Design and usability Sucks:

Usability sucks

Usability sucks

Design and usability OK:

Usability OK

Usability OK

Wrong selection order means lost productivity.

Hanging on the non-optimal list order theme. Check out this protocol list from Ethereal:

I just want the source IP address!

I just want the source IP address!

The filtering system in Ethereal is absolutely marvelous: just type whatever you want in the filter line. Alas, in order to type what I need, I have to remember the quasi-objects names in which the filter syntax encapsulates various protocol properties. Since I don’t use it all too often, I have to open the GUI expression builder, and look how many choices I have there! It took me quite a while to locate the protocol I need (IP) and then go back and correct myself since I’ve initially selected IPP instead.

I am fairly certain IP is somewhat more important to most people than ACP133/ACAP/ACE-other-WTF, so why not put the most common ones on top. Otherwise, see: I’ve wasted about a minute on this thing. Suppose there are 50,000 IT professionals in the US who earn $50/hour on the average and waste a minute a day looking for the right protocol, which means $40,000 is lost every day, or $10 million per year. That’s how huge the impact is!

Digg.com: Registration Usability Sucks

Afghanistan, Angola and Antarctica

Afghanistan, Angola and Antarctica

That’s super lame! How many subscribers from Afghanistan, Angola and Antarctica do you guys have?
Why not to spend some of your time and work a little bit on the website’s registration page usability?
Is it too hard to organize the ‘country’ pool down list based on number of registrations? Or is it too hard to detect the user’s IP, convert it into ‘country’ info and then preselect the country name in the list (HTML tag <option> in tag <select>)?
Tip: Go check out how Google’s Gmail does it: https://www.google.com/accounts/NewAccount

Design Fail factor: 1(out of 10)

Bookmark and Share