- Series: Interactive Technologies
- Paperback: 424 pages
- Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 2 edition (September 10, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0123706432
- ISBN-13: 978-0123706430
- Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,044,366 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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GUI Bloopers 2.0, Second Edition: Common User Interface Design Don'ts and Dos (Interactive Technologies) 2nd Edition
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"GUI Bloopers 2.0 is an extremely useful book for any software developer or interaction designer. If you have never made any of these mistakes, it's because you have never designed a UI. If anything, these bloopers are even more common now than when version 1.0 was published, so the need for the book has only increased." --Jakob Nielsen, Principal Nielsen Norman Group (www.nngroup.com)
"This is the most entertaining design book I've read. Jeff Johnson has once again done a fabulous job of reminding us about all the silly design mistakes we can make and giving us great advice on how to avoid them in our own designs." --Jared M. Spool, Founding Principal, User Interface Engineering
"The second edition of GUI Bloopers is that true rarity: a sequel to something great that's even better than the original. (Think Godfather II.) While Jeff could have settled for just updating the examples, as near as I can tell he's rewritten nearly the entire book, and it shows. The organization is terrific, the insights are easier to grasp, and above all, the writing is leaner. If you ever picked it up in the past and ended up not plunking down your money, definitely take another look. It's gone from a great book to an excellent one." --Steve Krug, Advanced Common Sense
About the Author
Jeff Johnson is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of San Francisco. He is also a principal at Wiser Usability, a consultancy focused on elder usability. After earning B.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Yale and Stanford, he worked as a UI designer, implementer, manager, usability tester, and researcher at Cromemco, Xerox, US West, Hewlett-Packard, and Sun. He has taught at Stanford, Mills, and the University of Canterbury. He is a member of the ACM SIGCHI Academy and a recipient of SIGCHI's Lifetime Achievement in Practice Award. He has authored articles on a variety of topics in HCI, as well as the books GUI Bloopers (1st and 2nd eds.), Web Bloopers, Designing with the Mind in Mind (1st and 2nd eds.), Conceptual Models: Core to Good Design (with Austin Henderson), and Designing User Interfaces for an Aging Population (with Kate Finn).
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Jeff Johnson did an excellent job. The chapters arrange the "bloopers" into meaningful categories (GUI Controls, Navigation, Textual, etc) and the table of contents makes it very easy to locate a specific topic.
Personally, I like his approach of "Don'ts followed by Dos". Presenting an example of bad design first, forced me to try to spot where the mistakes were (not always an easy task) and this contributed, in my opinion, to a better learning experience. Another nice surprise was to learn in appendix B, the way this second edition was "usability-tested" and also, a very important although not so obvious concept, "Reviewing is not usability-testing".
This book is very easy to read and understand and I would certainly recommend it to every developer (from beginner through to senior level) involved directly or indirectly with any GUI design or implementation.
However the most frustrating thing for me is that the Kindle edition of this book is full of bloopers itself. It seems that some OCR program has been used to convert the captions on the screenshots and figures to text. They are full of sometimes hilarious but mostly just annoying misspellings and errors. The figures also don't line up well with the text, meaning that you end up navigating forwards and backwards through the pages to see them.
It's not really acceptable when the Kindle edition costs so much. It's quite ironic that a book about GUI bloopers would make such an error.
Each chapter is named after a class of common errors (e.g. 'Navigation Bloopers', 'Taking control away from users', etc.) and gives many examples of the error, and shows how to fix the errors.
The book seems to focus about equally on desktop application UI and web UI, so both types of developers will find it handy.
Note that there's probably not much new here if you're already an experienced UI/interaction designer or usability expert.
He pretty much covers the entire range of GUI bloopers that developers are likely to make, and gives a plethora of examples, both from real applications and invented for the sake of illustration. The book is well organized and after reading the book from cover to cover, I now feel I'll be able to go back to the book and find fairly easily his treatment of a particular category of blooper and review his recommendations.
I like the fact that he clearly explains why bloopers are bloopers and the severity that users are likely to rate each one of them. He often points out particular bloopers that may be especially hard to fix and are also especially onerous to users, but he doesn't care. As I said, for the author, a blooper is a blooper and must be dealt with. He always puts needs of the user before the difficulties of the developer and has little patience with claims that it's just too hard or expensive to get rid of a particular blooper. I guess the thing is, if you think it's too hard, you shouldn't be in this business.