Design Interface Comic Strips
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The Boss says to Dilbert, "I hired a professional to help us design our product interface." The Boss continues, "His last job was as an international terrorist. It's not a perfect fit but he went to Yale." Dilbert sits at a table and says to the man sitting with him, "So, I hear you went to Yale, Sven." Sven answers, "I yust got out last week."
Tags #frustration, #gadgets, #smartphone interface rage, #perfect storm, #bad interface design, #chubby fingers, #poor signal strenth, #smashing phone, #frustrated, #can't survive, #lesser of two eveils
Dilbert: Whoa! Watch out. I've read about this. It's called smartphone interface rage. It's caused by the perfect storm of bad interface design, chubby fingers, and poor signal strength. He'll get so frustrated that he'll consider smashing his phone. Then he'll realize he can't survive without his phone and he'll be twice as frustrated. We have to do something. Wally: Run as fast as you can into the wall! It will take your mind off of your phone! Sometimes the best you can hope for is that the lesser of two evils is the funny one.
Dilbert is in The Boss's office. He holds some files and says, "I need help on the assignment that you said is a 'no brainer.'" The Boss says, "It's easy. Just skip the 'interface design' phase and make everything beige. You can't go wrong with beige." Dilbert walks away thinking, "I always know where to go for no-brainer decisions."
Dilbert: I simplified the user interface as you suggested. You wanted one button to do eleven different functions. It wasn't easy, but I think you'll be pleased. If you want me to turn up the volume... you hold the button down for exactly five seconds... then double-tap, and double-tap again. Then hold for exactly six seconds. Then press it all the way down, then halfway up, then 27 percent back down. And hold for nine seconds. Or you could admit that you don't know anything about interface design. Boss: Never!
"We could design the product with a simple point - and - click interface..." "Or we could require the user to choose among thousands of poorly documented commands, each of which must be typed exactly right on the first try." "Bear in mind, we'll never meet a customer ourselves." "Make it so they have to reboot after every typo."
Dilbert: You designed our hardware with black buttons on a black case. The user interface will be invisible in normal light. Designer: But more important, it looks great! Dilbert: You don't know what "important" means, do you? Designer: It sounds nerdy. I majored in art.
Dilbert points to a slide and says, "My new design will meet all of our customers' current and future needs." The Boss is sitting with two board members, one male and one female. The male board member says, "That's no good; they'll never need to upgrade." Dilbert responds, "Please don't ask me to put flaws in my design." The Boss says, "Flaws could work." The male board member says, "We need flaws." The female board member says, "Flaws, flaws, flaws." Dilbert grabs his tie in fear and says, "Please.... No....." The Boss says, "Make it freeze every hour." The male board member says, "The interface needs to be more confounding." The female board member raises her finger and says, "And..." Headline: Later. Dilbert is on the floor begging, "Please... No more." A voice from the meeting continues, "... And crippling electric shocks." Headline: Much, much later. The Boss says, "The help screen could recommend marrying an unemployed, shirtless guy with a mullet." The male board member responds, "That's marketing!"
Boss: Can you make that link button blue instead of burnt orange? Dilbert: Yes, if you want people to click on it, and you thrive on bad design. Boss: I have an eye for design. Dilbert: And I have an elbow for music.
Boss: 100 percent of our smartphone buyers dropped and broke their phones within one minute of unboxing them. Despite our slippery materials and brittle design, customers blamed themselves. And we won seven prestigious design awards. CEO: Yes!