Late night with user interface web sites

Best of chi-web and sigia-l: “Using the archives for each mailing list, I’ve compiled a list of the summary postings from useful threads, and a few personally selected favorite postings.” [via WebWord]

Also on UIWEB, Reasons ease of use doesn’t happen on engineering projects: “The focus on features for features sake typically results in mediocre features, and a product that is difficult for people to use.”

While re-reading parts of Joel Spolsky’s User Interface Design for Programmers, it occurred to me that I had never actually used any Windows software written by Joel’s team. So I downloaded a copy of CityDesk and started clicking. Although it was mostly straightforward to use, there were a few glaring problems. First, some of the windows support control-W for File -> Close, some do not. There’s no obvious reason for this inconsistency. Second, when I went to publish my new site, I expected to be prompted to enter FTP info so that CityDesk could contact my server. Instead, previewing on the local machine was the only option available. It took a trip to the documentation to realize I had to turn on “Designer Mode” to show the FTP settings. Whoops.