Re: Your opinions again,

Subject: Re: Your opinions again,
From: mpriestley -at- VNET -dot- IBM -dot- COM
Date: Thu, 2 Jun 1994 11:27:46 EDT

Marilynne Smith suggests that "appears" may be too dramatic a word for
something as ordinary as a screen change:

>To most of us, a change in the appearance of
>the monitor is just another page turned on the computer. Why not just say
>something like "on the next screen choose XYZ"? What the user cares about
>is what they're going to do on the next screen. They don't need trumpets to
>announce the change.

We probably have different operating systems in mind. In a windowing system
(such as Windows, OS/2, Macintosh, or X Windows), the page-turning analogy
is inappropriate. The window that appears might only be a quarter of the
screen, overlaying previous elements when it appears. It is not "the
next screen" so much as it is a new element added to the current screen.
Most often, the user will be doing something with the new window, but this
is not necessarily the case: it could be a monitor window, or an announcement
window ("The copyright window appears. Wait a few seconds, and it will close
automatically once the application finishes loading."). Interaction with
a windowing system can be very non-linear: the "next" window is likely to
be very dependent on a user choice, rather than the next step in a logical
sequence. As such, I think it makes sense to draw attention to the new window,
naming it and (if necessary) briefly describing it.

I hope this clarifies,

Michael Priestley
mpriestley -at- vnet -dot- ibm -dot- com
Disclaimer: presently incapacitated by ankylo - anlykly - uh - dyslexia.
I didn't type this in at all, a poltergheist did, so it's responsible not
me (and not my employer neither).

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