What would happen if the design principles of Monopoly where applied to an interactive digital artefact?
In the words of Durrell Bishop the real-world is full of self-evident objects where their shape displays their mechanical properties. What if digital tools could actually be clearer in their display as to what they performed? I am not talking about icons here. I have lost too many man hours trying to decipher the icons on Microsoft Outlook Web Access when I need to send an email due to some egoist insisting on using icons they thought were >cool< that no-one else does… but I digress.
Bishop uses Monopoly to explain his premise on self-evident design. The game itself has a complex system that is as complex as using a video recorder (slightly old school but hang in there) and he argues that it's functions are self-evident. The board graphics demonstrate clearly the possibilities and route around the board; the pieces show the players' proximity and the dice demonstrates the position of both the current and previous spatial position of the latest player. Houses show both ownership and risk. At each stage there is a physical signal as to where the game currently is.
If a player has to go the toilet or make a cuppa during play, when they return it doesn't take a full debrief to resume the game. Bishop's main point is that at one glance you know where you are. Using the comparison to a video recorder he suggests that videos would have been more user-friendly if at a glance the user would know what is on the tape, where the programme they want lies on the tape, how much is left on the tape and who else needs to watch the programmes remaining on the tape before it can be recorded over.
So my point of interest in Bishop's research is whether digital interface design can transcend the icon-centric bull and harness more self-evident design principles to make the usability of interactive digital artefacts more intuitive for the user. Does anyone have anything to add to this idea?
******Interaction Gestalt And The Design Of Aesthetic Interactions [Lim, Y.] - Taken from: Interaction Gestalt And The Design Of Aesthetic Interactions LIM, Y., STOLTERMAN, E., JUNG, H., AND DONALDSON, J. (2007) Interaction Gestalt An...
7 years ago