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What Makes a Design Seem Intuitive?

A talk by Jared Spool

About the Talk

May 28, 2009 3:00 PM

One Memorial Drive, Cambridge MA

One Memorial Drive, Cambridge MA

Everyone wants an "intuitive" interface: the users, the designers, and the content publishers. But building them is hard. User Interface Engineering's recent research has given insight into why it's hard and how to get past major obstacles.

To build an "intuitive" interface, a designer has to do two things: (1) Take complete advantage of what the user already knows, so what they see is completely familiar to them and (2) make the act of learning anything new completely imperceptible to the user. It turns out, if the interface requires the user to realize they are learning something, the "intuitive" label disappears instantly.

In this talk, Jared will show:

  • How users need both tool knowledge and domain knowledge to complete their tasks
  • How simple problems with designs can cause big problems for users
  • What successful teams are doing to create experiences that delight

Jared will show examples from Microsoft Word, MSN, Google Talk, Flickr, Avis, and many more.

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