Good news: there are tools out there that can make you much safer online and give you more control over your data. Bad news: most of them are really hard to use. A new generation of the open-source movement is trying to fix that, and here’s how.
The usability of Microsoft Windows 8 on a tablet is so bad that one expert says he’s sticking with Windows 7 until Windows 9 arrives. After using the Surface RT, I understand, but the real issue is lumping together an OS for tablets and PCs.
A new biography of Steve Jobs quotes Bill Gates as saying that the Apple co-founder “never really understood much about technology.” While the Microsoft billionaire likely saw that as a put-down, technology is arguably the least important thing about Apple’s most successful products.
iPad users aren’t stingy with their devices, according to a new usability report by the Nielsen Norman Group focusing on Apple’s tablet. iPad owners tend to share with their household, and they also have very particular tastes about what they do and don’t like in apps.
The real world experiences of children using the iPad has not stopped the Nielsen Norman Group from releasing a preliminary 93-page report detailing the usability problems of the iPad, citing problems in learning gestures, hidden controls, small buttons, and many other usability errors.
Such eye-tracking research is not cheap, however. For teams who don’t have the research budget to do full usability studies, Trailhead provides a way of creating limited heat maps inexpensively. Trailhead can’t track users’ eye movements, so it tracks mouse movements and mouse clicks instead.
There have been plenty of complaints about privacy and other concerns with Google Buzz, but the biggest problem with it is that it’s just so darn hard to use, and so convoluted in its design. Even quitting Buzz is way harder than it needs to be.
Perhaps the strongest criticism of the iPhone has been that it doesn’t support multitasking, aside from a few of Apple’s own system level applications that are included on the device and can’t be deleted. Yet the iPhone sells like hotcakes, and Apple has a technical solution that essentially accomplishes the same thing, called background notifications. If multitasking is so important, as the critics, pundits and technology bloggers will tell you, why have the iPhone and its sibling the iPod touch become two of the most successful electronics devices of all time?
Because the technology press and hardcore technology users have an unprecedented platform from which to speak and be heard. Period. End of story.
Last week’s iPad announcement made this abundantly clear. The technosphere has labeled the iPad an unqualified failure, in large part due to lack of multitasking. News flash: multitasking is overrated. Its not nearly as important to average, everyday users as it is to the people who cover technology for a living. Despite the fact that Palm’s WebOS and Google’s Android both support multitasking, neither has come anywhere close to the success of the iPhone. Read More about Multitasking is Overrated
The one thing many people did not expect with a new version of iTunes was that Apple (s aapl) would use the opportunity to cause dissent among its fanbase by introducing another new user interface. Some classify the new styling as “needed” and “elegant and refined” while others have resorted to a variety of hacks to return to the UI of yesteryear.
We’ve gone through every corner of iTunes we could find and dug up all of the major changes in the interface. Here’s what we found. Read More about iTunes UI: Deconstructing 8 to 9
Do you ever want to peek over the shoulder of your web site visitors to see how they move about and navigate? As site owners, we often make assumptions as to how people are getting to particular pages or using particular functionality. Armed with pages and pages of analytics statistics we focus on what people are viewing or searching for.
Sometimes, though, there is no substitute for just watching how people interact and use your site to really understand your users’ behavior. Usability and testing tool Clixpy hopes to make that possible.