If there is any takeaway concept from the reading this week it is the need to be CONCISE.  When it comes to design all of the elements need to come together in such a concise way that it leads to an intuitive, mindless, self-evident experience.

-Step aside School House Rocks, because it’s 5 that is a magic number. When making options concise, 5 choices is the sweet spot. (Although psychologists say 3-4, I am going to stick with 5 as that is a “rule” and I hate to break rules.)

-Less words are more! Remove “happy talk” aka remove the “blah blah blah”.

-Show, don’t tell.

-Grab the attention of the users, but don’t distract them – find the balance.

-Use progressive disclosure and put it in the hands of the user to dive deeper into details.

-When the user’s decision to satisfice, satisfactory. (Satisfice, brought to you by the same user’s who settle in relationships and careers.)

-Create a clear hierarchy of what is necessary for the site – make clear visual punctuation and grammar. This allows for better scanning of the page by the user.

I enjoy that people are prone to “muddle through” experiences and create how they use a site or device based on what they think it does as a result of the devices’s the visibility and the user’s mental model. I find this “muddling” happening when using new software and programs. The initial reaction is to muddle until I reach the point of frustration and really need to go through tutorials to actually learn the software. Muddling is this great experience that is innate in humans – we need to explore (without consequence) for a wee bit, to see that we are on the same page as the web page we are exploring. It would be great to gage this muddling factor during user testing.

If (the hierarchy, visibility, etc are not self evident after a brief while)
{then exploration turns to frustration.}
else { the user is satisficed and stays.};