Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 27th Jan 2009 13:46 UTC
Editorial With Windows 7 having made its grand debut, and with KDE4's vision making leaps and bounds forward with every release, we have two major software projects that have decided to implement some fairly drastic interface changes. Such changes are bound to receive some harsh criticisms - but the funny thing is, these criticisms usually come from people you least expect it from.
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RE: Comment by mithnae
by google_ninja on Tue 27th Jan 2009 16:21 UTC in reply to "Comment by mithnae"
google_ninja
Member since:
2006-02-05

and the most disturbing consequence of said change would be that he or she will be forced to repeat the "pattern learning process" once again, possibly without much thinking of what has changed and why.


That right there is the important bit. An expert user of any UI will be less productive if the UI changes, no matter if that change is a good one or not. The office 2k7 UI is a great example of this, there was a hell of a lot of thought and usability testing put into it, and still the pro users were doing the sky is falling song and dance.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by mithnae
by Soulbender on Tue 27th Jan 2009 16:24 in reply to "RE: Comment by mithnae"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

I have always thought that part of being an "expert" was that you 'd be able to cope with change well.
Otherwise you're not really an expert, are you?

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[3]: Comment by mithnae
by google_ninja on Tue 27th Jan 2009 16:46 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by mithnae"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

expert computer user, maybe. I don't know if it's because I'm a UI developer, or just love computers so much that I enjoy learning new and interesting ways of doing things.

I was talking more about expertise gained on a specific UI. If you are a vi expert, you spent a hell of alot of time becoming a vi expert. A fundamental change in vi keybindings will render your thousands of hours gaining expertise on a rediculesly complex interface next to useless, and it doesn't matter if those changes are for better or worse.

Now, there aren't many apps out there that have an interface as obtuse as vi, so that is an extreme example. But you can see it again in office, casual office users were over the moon happy with 2k7 from day 1, expert users have only begun to say that it is a much better UI in the last six months or so. In usability literature, almost every book would refer to office as an example of failure in UI design, it was so poor that doing almost anything other then what they were doing would have made it better. But still, it took about a year for expert users to get on the "Ribbon for complex applications" bandwagon.

Reply Parent Score: 2

christianhgross Member since:
2005-11-15

> a person who has special skill or knowledge in some particular field; specialist; authority: a language expert.

Catch the keyword SPECIALIST... Let me give you an example. You can drive a car, yes? So why not drive the car on the other side that you are used to.

Sure you can do it EVENTUALLY, but the fact is that switching sides of the road is not easy and can be down right dangerous. YET we are all experts in driving a car (at least those that have licenses).

I would argue that the more specialized an expert is the harder it is to switch. Because you have indepth knowledge that needs to be relearned.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by mithnae
by Lennie on Wed 28th Jan 2009 15:57 in reply to "RE: Comment by mithnae"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I see a lot of other users that are not technical at all, not being able to work with the ribbon.

Reply Parent Score: 1