05. That’s Clearly A Diving Board

Ian and Andrew discuss the lack of ubiquity in icons and interface design, and potential risks of repurposing iconography.

It’s late at night. You’ve spent the whole day transferring files from your external drive to your computer and then uploading them to your online storage service, and it’s hard work. You reward yourself with a beer (you’ve earned it) and return from the kitchen to your desk. Your file transfer is done, the clock reads 1:33 AM, you’re ready for bed. You click the eject button so you can put your hard drive away — but instead of disconnecting the drive, you log out out of the web application — losing all of your data! Even worse, you already removed the drive, and the warning on the operating system has come true: all your files are corrupted!

  1. Icon understandings are based on previous experience
  2. More on icons and usability. Andrew always thinks the reply icon in Gmail is a back button.
  3. Labels always win.
  4. The Share Icon Is A Mess
  5. ClarisWorks Toolbar
  6. Susan Kare on the command icon
  7. Wikipedia about the command icon
  8. iOS HIG
  9. OS X HIG
  10. We use too much JavaScript
  11. Swedish ferry berth sign
  12. Maybe the eject button isn’t so sacred after all…