Little details

Written on 15 April 2014, 09:20am

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Since reading Designing for emotion I’ve been paying attention to the emotional component of the web. Most of the times it’s not present, some other times is very visible, and in some cases, it’s hidden. The people at Balsamiq Floris Dekker created – a place where they collect the small, hidden, fascinating details that contribute to a great user experience. One of the latest impressive things I found there is the float label pattern – that changes the placeholder to a label on focus (initial idea from @mds, see demo).

Back to the little big details, I started to see them myself. For now, here are two:

1. Flickr link to jobs page

If you view source you’ll see an ASCII text logo and a link to the flick jobs page: “You’re reading. We’re hiring.

flickr view source

2. Hidden swoosh in dutch football shirt crest

The Netherlands football kit designed by Nike feature a lion crest with the tongue forming a subtle Nike swoosh. The new lion is present on both home and away kits, and the lion head is quite different from the KNVB (Dutch Fooball Federation) logo:

swoosh 1swoosh 2
swoosh 3swoosh 4
swoosh 5

The lion has has been a focal point of the Dutch kits for more than 100 years, appearing in both black and white over the decades. Recently, the KNVB crest had portrayed just the head of the lion with a crown over it. Nike have changed that with a “rampant” lion that is white and enlarged, taking a very prominent spot on the shirt and immediately drawing the viewer’s eye to it.

3 usability principles about the users

Written on 21 January 2014, 03:49pm

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From the usability bible, now revisited:

1. Users don’t read, they scan pages.
2. Users take decisions based on trial and error. If they don’t get what they expect, they hit the ‘Back’ button; there is no penalty for being wrong.
3. Users are in hurry; they don’t read instructions. They don’t really care how the things suppose to work; if they find a way that works, they stick to it.

Image: Disney

Update your copyright year in your blog’s footer!

Written on 2 February 2012, 11:46am

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We’re already more than one month into 2012, and I still notice websites showing 2011 in their footer copyright notice.
3 examples:

The solution is really simple – use PHP’s date("Y") function to get the current year (or any similar functions for the alternative server side languages). No need to manually update your theme’s footer every 1st of January 🙂

<!-- replace -->
&copy; 2011
<!-- with -->
&copy; <?php echo date("Y"); ?>

Today, the users are scrolling to the end of the page. So it’s more likely for them to discover such simple mistakes that look simply unprofessional. It’s time to fix that!