Web User Interface Design

My experience with human-computer interaction starts with my hand-held HP 25C in 1976, flows through my punched-card FORTRAN IV green-bar paper days, on to Unix and MS-DOS command lines, Macintosh and Windows GUIs, and more recently to web and mobile applications.

The web as we know it burst forth in 1994, and most of our computer interactions today are with mobile apps and websites.

In 1/2012 I gave a presentation to the web entrepreneurship class at Northwestern University on my philosophy for web user interface design, including my principles, my rationale for those principles, a critique of the top 20 most-visited websites, and my list of best practices.

My core philosophy: there is a “dominant design” for the web, so you should “copy wildly” the layout, terminology, and behavior of the most highly-visited websites. Google, Facebook, Amazon.com, and others have invested billions of dollars in their web user experience, and billions of people have become familiar with how those sites operate.

So don’t reinvent the wheel.

Here is my 1/31/2012 presentation in both PDF and PPT format.

 

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