Monday, June 23, 2008

UI - You don't know how much you suck

I made a small mistake in my last post - instead of 'do what you want' what I meant to say was:

Hire a damn graphic designer and buy some icons!

This is a subtle difference, but the delusion of competency is unfortunately common.m-diy-disaster

Like your home handyman disasters, the DYI attitude for user interfaces can cost you big time.

However IT departments are usually too cheap, and some developer ego's are too big to realize that they can't do everything... thus UI abominations are created everyday.

UI development is hard, harder than most people think. 

The UI layer is where everything comes together, and as a result it's here you find all the issues with the underlying architecture.

If you're a UI developer - you suck, so make sure you check out the UI guidelines for your dev system (Microsoft, Apple, Gnome or KDE).

If you're not a UI developer; shut up, fix your code and give the UI guys a break.

Oh, and good luck!

Disclaimer: I've done both jobs, so I suck twice as much.


Famo said...

I find embarking on building a UI so daunting, I have no idea how to draw someone's eye across a page by placing certain blocks of text and colour in various positions. Even with the help of Kuler contributions my colour schemes tend to clash. I don't have a graphics tablet and I struggle to draw. I can take good photos but I can't do much with them in photoshop apart from resize. Then there's the problem of choosing a pleasing typeface... but I'm a programmer, so of course I'm currently trying to design a website. Will people like me ever learn?

Gio Sico said...

But I love design SOOOOO much ... ;)

Just don't ask me to do it on a time frame ...

Anonymous said...

So, what is the best vector icon library out there?

Best = combination of price / no of icons / quality / usability

Luke Marshall said...

That's a great question, and one that's hard for me to answer really well.

I've bought a subscription to:

It was a good price for a lot of icons (admittedly a lot of duplicates) with a number of different styles.

Predominately bitmap based, but had a lot of vector work as well.

I think in the future they will be doing more vector, but I can't say for sure.

I liked them because the icons looked professional, plus they had the option for custom work.

Hope this helps!