The Design Of Everyday Toilets


Another in my occasional series on the usability of toilets! It's hard wandering around seeing the mistakes which are made by designers. Perhaps it's poor keming on fonts, or a hotel room light switch which makes no sense, or - in my case - bogs. Lots of toilets incorporate a "dual flush." Press one button […] Read More

Sharing on Android is Broken


As I get older, I begin to lose neuroplaciticy. I get angry and confused when I don't understand things. I get frustrated when I have to change my behaviour. It happens to all of us, to some extent, and it's one of the major reasons you should design your apps in a clear and consistent […] Read More

Anti-Social App Design


My good friend Dan Appelquist recent wrote a fascinating blog post on solipsism as a design decision. He has a set of Lifx Internet Controlled Lightbulbs. They're great fun, but have some seriously screwy ideas about how people live. One key design of the app is to allow you to automatically switch off all your […] Read More

The Usability of Anti-Apartheid Encryption


(An adaptation of my earlier blog post on the same topic1.) This is a case study focusing on the usability of encryption systems as used by political dissidents in Apartheid era South Africa. Background - South Africa Between 1948 and 1994, the nation of South Africa was ruled by an ethnically white minority. They set […] Read More

Don't Use Colour To Indicate Binary States


Earlier this year I was playing around with DogeCoin. Try as hard as I might, I just couldn't get their API working. I delved into the settings, to see what was up. Take a look at this setting, is it obvious to you which state is active? I clicked around on it, and the state […] Read More

UI - Law Of Proximity


I was playing one of those stupid "Which X Are You?!?!?!?" quizzes which seem to be the rage these day. I'm weak willed, I know. One of the questions had a particularly interesting UI issue. It's not a particularly subtle problem. The image on the left related to the button on the right, and vice […] Read More

Dark Patterns - Opt-Out / Opt-In


Hanlon's Razor states, "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." It would be nice to think that all mistakes and errors we encounter are just the result of bone-headedness. Sadly, that's not the case. Quite often malicious people deliberately try to trick you into taking actions you would normally have ignored. […] Read More

How *NOT* To Do A Password Field


We're all changing our passwords in the light of Heartbleed, right? Good! If you are a developer or designer, I want to explain to you exactly how not to create a password dialogue box for your users. We're all used to seeing this: Input password: Change Password This is incorrect! Why? Because it leads to […] Read More