Do you screw usability if it pays to have a bad design?

Greed wins, even for Amazon. This issue has been discussed elsewhere, but adding it to the blog so the blog is alive. In grocery stores, milk is placed at the back. In big box warehouses like Costco, they keep on moving the merchandise locations. The underlying principle is, the more time you spend in store… Continue reading Do you screw usability if it pays to have a bad design?

USPS mobile app. Finding a post office near you.

Not found

Imagine you are in a new city trying to find out nearest post office. USPS has an app just for that to make  your life easy…or something like that. You are in a new place just to go to a post office. Would you; a). Provide your full address, city and state or zip code b).… Continue reading USPS mobile app. Finding a post office near you.

Hand dryer design fail

Badly designed hand dryer

I found this in Bangkok airport rest room. Can you tell what is wrong in the first picture? It’s a hand dryer alright. But it certainly has problems. This hand dryer deviates from familiar design format that we all are accustomed with. This one looked like a trash can and placed like a trash can.… Continue reading Hand dryer design fail

Nissan App information overload

Nissan LEAF app redesign

I drive Nissan LEAF. For everything on the planet there is an app. There is one for LEAF too. As far as I remember this app is on it’s second iteration. The purpose of the app is to check the status of the charging so you know how many miles you can drive. There are few… Continue reading Nissan App information overload

Electric vehicle charging issues with nrg EVgo station

If you drive an electric car and charge at different stations then you may be familiar with this issue. nrgEVgo stations recently appeared in Walmart stores. Customers can charge for free while spending their money inside. Good for both parties. As usual there are usability problems here too. If you notice, the charging handles are… Continue reading Electric vehicle charging issues with nrg EVgo station

New credit cards: Swipe or Insert?

Many of you have the new type of credit cards that have a micro chip embedded in it. It’s a good way to secure your credit card from fraudulent users. Just another security layer to make your life easy. The problem here is the experience at the checkout counter. You are so used to “swipe” your… Continue reading New credit cards: Swipe or Insert?

Enter the dragon

Target store doors

I noticed this door at a local target store here in Austin, Tx. If you notice the signs says Enter Only and Do not  Enter at the same time.  Confused? Apparently no one complained and business goes as usual. That prompted me to go check on other stores around and they don’t look anything like… Continue reading Enter the dragon

Flexibility vs. Usability

This is not a photoshoped product. It’s real. I guess the vendor made it to show off their manufacturing capabilities. However it illustrates one point for usability pros. Flexibility vs. usability. The more flexible the app or product is, the less usable. Do users really use all those functions/tools? Is it necessary to overwhelm the… Continue reading Flexibility vs. Usability

Don’t Prioritize Efficiency Over Expectations

Features meant to increase user efficiency by reducing steps can end up hurting users if they do not conform to existing mental models and expectations based on past experiences. The reduction in the number of steps does not translate in a reduction of the interaction cost, since users must spend cognitive effort to find a… Continue reading Don’t Prioritize Efficiency Over Expectations