jump to navigation

Are you sure? February 21, 2009

Posted by Melissa Quintanilha in delightful.
add a comment

Users usually find it really annoying to have to say they are sure when deleting an item, for instance. Some authors argue that we can totally remove this confirmation dialog and let the user ctrl+z if a mistake is done.

Netflix does it in a very elegant way.
If you want to delete a movie from your cue, you can just do it without having to say you’re sure. That row, instead of disappearing immediately, turns to gray and provides an “undo” link in the same place where the “x” for deleting used to be. Another delighful UX!

Before deletion:



Small delights that make up a good UX January 29, 2009

Posted by Melissa Quintanilha in delightful.
add a comment

I just had another one of those delightful moments of user experience design. Tiny little details like these really add up to the experience.

Twitter’s text box lets you know how many characters you still have left to type. This is in light gray, so it fades with the rest of the interface.

Then, as you approach your limit, the color of the characters changes to dark red. Or is this a brownish red?

When you are very close to running out of space, it changes once again to red.

These kinds of interface elements are in the periphery of our attention. Would usually pass by unnoticed. By a simple change of color, it came to my foreground. At first my thought in a nanosecond was “Wait, what happened? Did that number just change color?”. So I actually deleted an extra character to see how the number was before. I was surprised to see that it was gray and I had barely seen it. And i’ve been using twitter for quite a while now. I guess I never write long enough messages. 😉

This is what demonstrates a thoughtful user experience, I would say. The small details add up to make a difference.

Delightful November 15, 2008

Posted by Melissa Quintanilha in delightful.
add a comment

I had another one of those delightful moments while shopping for T-shirts at Threadless yesterday.

A lot has always been said about the triad: useful, usable, desirable. I actually prefer using delightful instead of desirable. In my opinion the math is like this: useful + usable + delightful = desirable. A product is desirable to people because of a perfect combination of those 3 aspects.

There’s a lot of research around affective computing and the like. Most of this research is focused on: how do we measure desirability? How do we measure emotion? As a designer, I am actually more interested in finding out which designs and interactions delight people.

Since I know what delights me, I decided to start posting example of these things. And maybe, from that, gain a better understanding of these delightful moments. A lot of this I know through my own common sense. But it doesn’t cost to observe even more.

I didn’t see anyone from Apple at the Design & Emotion Conference in Hong Kong. And still, all their products are super desirable and delightful. How do they do it? Well, we can see it, right? And, most importantly, we can experience it in their products, designs and interactions.

I’ll finish this post with a few definitions of delight.

From latin “delectare”, which means “to charm”
1. To please (someone) greatly
2. Take great pleasure in

Oh, darling, what a charming design that is! 😉