June 24, 2005

Top 10 Least Usable Everyday Items

From a recent User Vision survey, the top 10 "least usable items"were as follows:

1. Video Recorders
2. Child car seats
3. Digital TV systems
4. Digital cameras
5. Washing machines/dishwashers
6. Tin-openers
7. Packaging
8. Central heating systems
9. Handheld computers
10. Non-disposable nappies

User Vision is in the UK, and some of these names aren't what we call that item here. "Tin openers" would be called "can openers"...but I'm not sure what "non-disposable nappies" are...can someone fill me in?

I find it strange that they called "packaging" an "item", when it really is...well, packaging...that items come in. Note also that the survey used a list of 40 items and had 500 respondents identify their "top five" most difficult to use items. It would be interesting to see if the results were similar if they asked people to name items rather than selecting from a relatively small list.

June 23, 2005

Usability Guidelines Recommendation

"Through 'usability engineering' and these Guidelines, we have tested and redesigned our own site to reflect a citizen-centered approach. I see these Guidelines as a wonderful resource for improving the communication capabilities of HHS, as well as all government agencies. I recommend that these Guidelines be used by all who deliver information and services to the American public."
– Tommy G. Thompson
Secretary of Health and Human Services
June 2003

Related Items:
Usability.gov gets some press, and quietly releases new version of guidelines

Research-Based Web Design & Usability Guidelines

June 22, 2005

Take the MIT Weblog Survey

If you're a blogger...think about taking the survey.

[Via Mena at Six Apart]

June 21, 2005

Your web site might be a pain in the neck if...(with apologies to Jeff Foxworthy)

If your home page has four navigation bars, and "investor relations" is in two of them...your web site might be a pain in the neck.

If mousing over your main navigation bar causes content and colors to change in a totally different section of the page...your web site might (literally) be a pain in the neck.

If your global corporation's home page has seven main navigation sections and two of them are called 'Tools' and 'Information'...your web site might be a pain in the neck. (You've gotta love the "Customer Information" and "Hub of Excellence" pages under the "Information" section, not to mention the "Good Morning" greeting I'm seeing at a little past midnight!)

If your home page has a prominent "hints" link...your web site might be a pain in the neck.

"Our site is organized to help you quickly find the information you need with a minimum of “clicks”. In addition to the links on each page, you can use our drop down menus to find information sorted by product name, medical condition, even by Abbott division."
(Abbott Laboratories - Hints)