Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 11th Nov 2007 15:52 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces This is the fifth article in a series on common usability and graphical user interface related terms [part I | part II | part III | part IV]. On the internet, and especially in forum discussions like we all have here on OSNews, it is almost certain that in any given discussion, someone will most likely bring up usability and GUI related terms - things like spatial memory, widgets, consistency, Fitts' Law, and more. The aim of this series is to explain these terms, learn something about their origins, and finally rate their importance in the field of usability and (graphical) user interface design. In part V, we focus on modes.
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There's a few old stand-bys that cause confusion/frustration prominent in many things, but those that involve editing text in one form or another are very common, such as text editors that force you to be in an insert mode to be able to enter any text, and particularly those that have modes between "Insert here" and "Overwrite" that can lead to data loss. Old common Unix text editors are (in)famous for that, but those old ways have carried over to a lot of the newer text editors and word processors as well.

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