Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Why the Fancy UI?

I recently subscribed to the Joy of Code blog which I am liking a lot, and this post struck a chord with me. The thrust of the article is that software vendors shouldn't waste time tarting up their interfaces: what we need is standard, functional interfaces. While I agree that these "flashy" UIs can be very frustrating, or even unusable, I enjoy seeing an app go beyond the ordinary and try something different. Arguably the most successful company at not following the "Microsoft way" is of course Microsoft:

Microsoft Money

To answer the rhetorical question, I guess development teams at virus scanner companies have pretty much done the hard stuff, so have time to work on differentiating themselves from the competitors. Still if you're just trying to get something done, a plain, simple, intuitive UI is what you need.

1 comment:

Paul said...

I'm afraid I disagree. Plain and simple is not the solution to a bad UI. Good UI should have design elements and make the user want to use the application. As you said, it's about differentation now - how can we make it easier for users to get things done and enjoy while they're doing it.