Technologies allows us to live life at >> speed. Emotion-sensing clothing can now display our emotions like a sign-post.
Will this kind of social shortcut bring people closer, or desensitize us from others people’s feelings? Will we care as much about another person’s emotions if it only take a split second to discover?
Recently I saw a friend put stick-on sparkles onto her phone to make it look new. Although I think part of her reason of not replacing her phone with a newer, swankier model was financially driven, part of me also think that it’s because she likes her current phone. Her attachment to the functionality of the phone makes the tattered appearance tolerable and even worthy of fixing.
Can this be done for mature but out-of-maintenance software? Is it possible for designers to ‘dec’ software such that it’s a pleasure to use again? Softwares like Winamp already support this kind of idea through skinning. How can we push the envelope even further?
This article lists 5 design patterns for websites. In summary, the author advocates in-context system feedback, preservation of user’s locus of attention, scalable page layouts, and an access area that doesn’t require user registration. Although all of the author’s points are good advices, none of them really fit the traditional definition of a design pattern. A design pattern is a repeatable solution that solves a commonly seen problem in a field of practice. Proper description of design pattern should include a motive, a description of the general problem and instructions on how the pattern can be applied.
The first 3 points in the article are basically re-hashed basic interaction design principles. Flexible page layouts is a commonly known good, but rarely practiced, web design guidelines. The advice of having a free access area is a good business practice and has very little to do with design.
A more properly documented collection of web design patterns can be found here.
After using ee for almost 2 years, I decided to ditch it for Flickr. I liked the flexbility of ee. I could even torlerate its usability flaws. But a security loop-hole in the PHP code caused my host to shut-down my entire site. So, good bye ee and hello Flickr!