Saturday
May102014

Scaling Entities in User Experiences

UX designers must take into account how entities (orders, files, photos, etc) will scale in a UX. Initial designs are sometimes over-optimized for a “convenient” numbers for the sake of demonstrations and these designs don’t accomodate real-world scenarios.

Here's a great example from the VLC media player that I encountered today and inspired me to right this post. (FYI  am a huge fan and use VLC every day). The following dialog appears in VLC when doing Media > Open File from the main menu.

Pay close attendion to the Media Files dropdown.

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VLC is known for supporting many media formats (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRIaU172aKM). Let's see how many by clicking on the Media Files dropdown (located above the Open and Cancel buttons)

Screenshot (2)

Fortunately I have a two-monitor system because the width of that thing is 2545 pixels!

 

How to catch these issues before they appear

It turns out it’s pretty simple to catch these issues, just work with your design team and make sure you’ve evaluated how the UX works as the numbers scale from …

  • 0
  • 1
  • 10
  • 100
  • 10,000
  • etc.

You may be surprised why zero is on the list. One thing we see often is that this case is ignored and as a result the user can get confused between a list being empty and a list having an error (i.e. it could not fetch the list). Sometimes it’s even work letting the user know explicitly “there are any items here”.

As the numbers grow you’ll encounter:

  • The need to more asynchronous in loading UX and provide feedback
  • A need to group the items in some meaningful way
  • Filtering and sorting may be required for users to see any meaningful set
  • “Search” starts to become important
  • etc.
Wednesday
May072014

My Visio Presentation from the PowerShell Summit 2014  

My session wasn't recording last week, so I rerecorded the video and enhanced the content for viewing. Video and link to materials below

Materials: https://onedrive.live.com/redir?resid=1FF099EDB1C7EBFA!87363&authkey=!ABRswDeQYGR-Xi8&ithint=folder%2c.psm1

Video: https://vimeo.com/94408016

 

PowerShell and Visio Crazy Delicious (PowerShell Summit 2014) from Saveen Reddy on Vimeo.

Wednesday
Apr232014

Exporting the Contents of a Git Repository with PowerShell

A handy script for automating quickly getting the code out of a git repo, without actually wanting all the history of the repo.

$GITEXE="C:\Program Files (x86)\Git\bin\git.exe"
$REPO="https://github.com/advancedrei/MetaWeblogPortable.git"
$DESTDIR="d:\SourceCodeExport"

# Clean out destination folder
if (Test-Path $DESTDIR)
{
    Remove-Item -Recurse -Force $DESTDIR
}

# Clone from repo to folder
&$GITEXE clone --depth 1 $REPO $DESTDIR

# Remove non-source code files from the destination folder
Remove-Item -Recurse -Force ( join-path $DESTDIR ".git")

In my case, I needed to ZIP up the contents also. If you need to do check out this post: how to create ZIPs easily with PowerShell.

Monday
Apr072014

Comic Neue

Inspired by Comic Sans, Craig Rozynski has created Comic Neue http://comicneue.com/.

Available in several weights and styles, it combines the friendliness of Comic Sans and looks professional. It's also public domain and free.

Snap00343

Sunday
Mar232014

Look up when you play an FPS. You might have missed some cool ceilings.  

From the original thread on reddit, Apparently I don't look up enough when I play Deus Ex: Human Revolution because I missed some really unique ceilings.

The full list is here: http://imgur.com/a/FDAbV. Below are three that I particularly liked. Click on the images to see a larger version.

(Speaking of the topic of looking up, I did much more of that in Dishonored –  which plays just like DE:HR –  because Dishonored's “blink” ability will naturally start having you look for destinations to perch on well above your current position.)

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