Re: Minimalism

Subject: Re: Minimalism
From: Dick Miller <DICK_MILLER -at- HP-VANCOUVER-OM10 -dot- OM -dot- HP -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 07:33:33 -0800

Victor:

A comment on your "not-so-glamorous example." I'd be willing to bet that a
lot of Americans had wished they had a user guide the first time they
encountered a bidet in a European hotel. (Have you ever seen the relevant
clip on America's Funniest Home Videos? It helped me feel less stupid.) :-)

--Dick Miller


______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Re: Minimalism
Author: Non-HP-victor (victor -at- TRCINC -dot- com) at HP-Vancouver,mimegw10
Date: 1/31/97 6:06 AM


I was trying to stay out of this, but Robert brought up redesigning
matchbooks to avoid the need for a "close before striking" message
and it started the wheels turning. I like his idea. It can be
applied to a million other bad designs we run into every day.
Doors for instance. Why should any door ever need a "push" or
"pull" sign. Shouldn't it be obvious?

Bad design makes our jobs more difficult than they need to be.
Try reading Donlad Norman's _Design of Everyday Things_ or
_Turn Signals are the Facial Expressions of Automobiles_.

We can apply the concepts to helping developers/engineers with
constructive criticism. If they're actually interested in
improving the product, they might listen. Don't limit yourself
to a "strictly writing" role.

If you do a good job, you might put yourself out of a writing
job and end up as a designer/tester/HCI type.

One last not-so-glamorous example: How many documents have you
read about how to use a toilet?

--
Victor Chapel victorc -at- trcinc -dot- com Communications Group
The Technical Resource Connection, Inc. www.trcinc.com
a wholly owned subsidiary of Perot Systems Tampa

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