All posts from
December 2005

Living La Vida Virtual: Interfaces of the Near Future

“Personal computing is in an awkward adolescence right now. On one hand, we are rapidly moving into ubiquitous computing environments that let people constantly interact with the omnipresent network; on the other, the devices and interfaces we are using to enter these new frontiers provide woefully inadequate user experiences. Let’s take a look at one of the key technologies that will take mobile user experiences to the next level: holography.” (Dirk KnemeyerUXmatters)

Beyond Menus and Toolbars in Microsoft Office

Audio presentation and slides by Jensen Harris (Microsoft) – “This talk will provide a historical perspective on the evolution of the Office user interface and the battle against the mounting complexity of the product. You’ll get a behind-the-scenes look at the different design iterations, and an in-depth look at the new Office UI constructs, including the Ribbon, galleries, contextual tabs, and the MiniBar.” (BayCHI)

Content Management: Strategic Challenge

“The volume of product-related information in companies is increasing by leaps and bounds. The reason is the growing multiplicity of products, software and services that require explanation. After the EU enlargement, not only large companies, even small and medium-sized enterprises must come to terms with the multiplier effect of multiple languages. The challenge is to keep the information across the company both consistent and free of redundancy, to make it universally available, to publish it on paper as well as electronically, and to bring out the different language versions as simultaneously as possible. Companies that have not mastered the art of overcoming these challenges must suffer additional costs and time pressure in handling quality problems that are becoming more and more difficult to solve.” (Daniela Straub and Michael Fritz – tekom slides)

Informing Ourselves To Death

“(…) there can be no disputing that the computer has increased the power of large-scale organizations like military establishments or airline companies or banks or tax collecting agencies. And it is equally clear that the computer is now indispensable to high-level researchers in physics and other natural sciences. But to what extent has computer technology been an advantage to the masses of people? To steel workers, vegetable store owners, teachers, automobile mechanics, musicians, bakers, brick layers, dentists and most of the rest into whose lives the computer now intrudes? These people have had their private matters made more accessible to powerful institutions.” (Neil Postman) – courtesy of designobserver

Finding information on the free World Wide Web: A specialty meta-search engine for the academic community

“The Web is continuing to grow rapidly and search engine technologies are evolving fast. Despite these developments, some problems still remain, mainly, difficulties in finding relevant, dependable information. This problem is exacerbated in the case of the academic community, which requires reliable scientific materials in various specialized research areas. We propose that a solution for the academic community might be a meta–search engine which would allow search queries to be sent to several specialty search engines that are most relevant for the information needs of the academic community. The basic premise is that since the material indexed in the repositories of specialty search engines is usually controlled, it is more reliable and of better quality.” (Yaffa Aharoni et al. – First Monday 10.12)

Blog Interface Design 2.0

“(…) many blogs suffer from interface design shortcomings. Unlike issues of spam and authority, these problems have relatively straightforward solutions that could considerably increase the utility of blog content. Assuming a blog is not filled with spam content (splogs), spam comments, or spam trackbacks, there’s often a wealth of information to be found therein: information that is frequently buried deep within archives and comments. This article looks at ways to bring that information forward.” (Luke Wroblewski – Functioning Form)

Erik Spiekermann: Typography and design today

“(…) calls himself an information architect. He is equally comfortable and prolific as a writer, graphic and typeface designer, but type is always at the epicentre of this communication dynamo. He founded MetaDesign in 1979, started FontShop in 1988, is a board member of ATypI and the German Design Council, and president of the istd International Society of Typographic Designers. In July 2000, Erik withdrew from the management of MetaDesign Berlin – which created a bit of a stir – and set up his new studio, United Designers Network in the same neighbourhood.” (Uleshka – PingMag)

The Website Development Process

“Think about how you are going to structure things. What is important? What is not? What needs to be on every page? Depending on the scale of the project you might want to create a visual sitemap for your client. Preparing a sitemap is essential if you are reorganising content in any way.” (PingMag) – courtesy of kelake