If it’s easy people wont use it?

I’m a strong believer in the importance of good interface design (although admittedly I don’t always practice what I preach!). I’ve attended many of the Neilsen Norman conferences, which I would thoroughly recommend to anyone.

 Anyhow I’ve been struggling today to get Dreamweaver to work on the new Vista installation PC. I upgraded to Vista and it’s not been smooth but that’s another story, what happended today was that Dreamweaver had been falling over with Windows giving me a helpful message saying that it’s not responding and there’s a problem with it (which I know because I can’t use it!), as I struggled with reinstalling it and reconfiguring it to my sites and taste I realised that if it had been a very easy process then I might not feel any sense of achievement from getting it to work.

 This is a weird human characteristic but takes me back to Unix (and more recently Linux) and also to the whole Apple v Windows thing, Macs are lovely and I still enjoy using them when I get the chance to but with Windows you do have this slight uphill struggle which can be frustrating whilst you’re in the midst of it but generally the achievement of getting over the issues of interface/application/system leave you with a kind of attachment to them.  

 I’m going to mull this over some more as I struggle on with upgrading Dreamweaver….

About willwoods
I'm Head of Learning and Teaching Technologies in the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University.

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