View Full Version : GUI design
23rd July 2004, 09:53 PM
i'm currently developping an academic project concerning interface design and human engineering.
which authors and books do u like more and/or u find better for user interface design in realtime app's?
24th July 2004, 01:50 AM
I dont know about any books but I have extemely strong opinions in this area. Would it be of any value for me to rant abut any of my feelings in this area? The overshortened version of my opinion is that there has been a lack of development in this arena, insomuch as most UI elements that I am exposed to today were mostly originally designed at least roughly 15-20 years ago.
I feel that hardware and specifically cpu speeds of the average PC have now accelerated past the level required to make some of the futuristic UI's a reality. Certainly on the PC platform hardware spec and graphics capabilities were lacking in the 80s and a good deal of the 90's, but the price/performance potential of pcs today is just begging for some leaps forward in the way humans use PCs.
Im pretty interested to learn what the stumbling-blocks and delay fators have been in the world of UI's in broad terms. I know research has continued in university etc type research settings in the decades that have passed since the 70's when many of the basic window-type mouse controlled metaphores for interacting with PCs were created, but I dont see that much stuff that makes it to real world.
Personally when dreaming of differnt UI possibilities, I like to change some variables a lot to create extreme new possibilities. So for example I forget the user sitting at a desk scenario, and think of a human in am empty room, where each wall is computer screen. Human can move whole body to control computer, eyes and senses can move in different directions, and this is better for body and mind. I am not a brain ina jar. An intelligent UI to me takes account of our humanity, so it should cleverly interface with my body in a way that is compatible with my hard-wired human bahaviour-patterns.
Sorry about this answer that was clearly not what you were looking for, but I cant help getting passionate in a strange way about this subject. Perhaps after 21 years of squinting at small objects on a small screen whilst hunched at a desk, there is a deep desire in me for a more skeletally liberating and less mind-spazzing interaction with our digital tools.
24th July 2004, 10:15 AM
Originally posted by elbows
r me to rant abut any of my feelings in this area? The overshortened version of my opinion is that there has been a lack of development in this arena, insomuch as most UI elements that I am exposed to today were mostly originally designed at least roughly 15-20 years ago. I agree completely. I'm not an expert, far from it really, on the subject, but I think that the old "desktop" metaphore is so old that I wonder why it hasn't been changed yet. I suppose that it is because it still works well after so many years!
Regarding OS UIs I'd like to ask myself if there's really any need to change the metaphore. What would the benefits be? I can think of speed and bigger man-machine integration.
How would you do it? You have to think both in hardware and software terms, mind you, just like the Xerox guys did when they invented the desktop and mouse thing.
Now this is too OS UI focused but still...
At some point in my life I would like to investigate about this, it's a subject that interests me a lot! And everytime I see bollocks like "3D OS!!!" with a mouse, I want to cry. If somebody wants to create a new man-machine interface he/she has to think both in creating new software and hardware to support it.
24th July 2004, 11:13 AM
well you should check out project looking glass (http://wwws.sun.com/software/looking_glass/) by sun microsystems, check out the video demo (http://wwws.sun.com/software/looking_glass/demo.html) ; this is definitely a step in the right direction :cool:
24th July 2004, 11:42 AM
Jacob Nielssen is/used to be the (web) usability guru, although most designers will tell you his ideas are too strict. He explains the rules, but once you understand the rules the fun bit is to break them.
24th July 2004, 04:01 PM
no more jacob nielsen.. nor donald norman either!
they'r quite good (though nielsen's extremism is some kind of silly sometimes!!) but i'm a bit sick of them..
nevertheless i'm looking more towards UI design on applications, (realtime apps!),
not web design..
i do agree with your opinions about GUI design but what i really need now is more /info/data/books... so if u recall a good reading or investigation on this subject drop a line (or more!heheh!).
what i 'm trying to do in my studies is to develop an interface specificly for video loop control (a small part of vj'ing activity).
if everything works well in few time i'll have somekind of prototype to test!
26th July 2004, 03:18 AM
lowRes, you'll definitely want to check out "Interface Culture" by Steven Johnson. Its a quick very good read covering the history of interfaces and will definitely be a good starting point for your project.
26th July 2004, 10:03 AM
i can,t recomend Interface Culture at all, i found it very unfocussed and plain boring.
i can highly recomment The Humane Interface: New Directions for Designing Interactive Systems by Jeff Raskin.
One of the things it discusses is focussing the operating system around data/information instead of applications. Very interesting read!
reading jacob nielsen may not be very sexy but it is essential knowledge. Donald norman is a lot more fun to read and also essential.
If anyone has any other suggestions i,d love to hear it. I have About Face by Alan Cooper but i have not read it much.
does anyone know Designing Visual Interfaces: Communication Oriented Techniques by Kevin Mullet and Darrell Sano?? i,d like to hear if it is any good.
26th July 2004, 08:39 PM
i think there is a HUGE devide between webdesign and design of interfaces for Apps.
I've been doing webdesign for ages, and yesterday i sat down and started thinging about an automated video playout server system type thing, and i have no idea where to start. its bloody hard work. i think i'm gonn ahvae to get some books too.
26th July 2004, 09:03 PM
Originally posted by sondz
yesterday i sat down and started thinging about an automated video playout server system type thing, and i have no idea where to start. its bloody hard work. i think i'm gonn ahvae to get some books too.
Good idea... some of the biggest VJ softwares out there should be taking a note out of your book......
MoRpH... sick of crap VJ software UIs
27th July 2004, 05:16 AM
i saw an interesting input interface a while back (maybe on wired news), where you have various knobs (but movable) and objects on a tablelike surface, and a projector overhead projects an image of how the different objects/controls interact and you control it from there..seemed quite powerful for a cheap sort of solution as well.
27th July 2004, 10:59 AM
I just realised something that might be handy: a book on grid systems. *cough*If you search suprnova.org on "design" you might find something interesting...*cough*
It'll help to get an organised feel to your interface.
28th July 2004, 10:39 PM
Originally posted by klumsy
hey klumsy, that reminds of reactable! a project made(?still in development?) by sergi jord?(he was part of 'la fura dels baus') in Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona.
check out on the web!! his past projects are also very good!!
6th August 2004, 02:08 PM
unfold :: thanx for that tip on grid systems! though that is more towards graphic design and text layout..
*btw*u can try to find about face2 on limewire..!*cough* hehehe!
both are very good readings!!!
17th August 2004, 01:47 AM
check the end of this thread (http://www.vjforums.com/showthread.php?threadid=7687&perpage=15&pagenumber=2) for some good links to bill buxton's work!
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