Tuesday, August 5, 2008

What the heck, Aurora?



Ryan Stewart:
"Aurora is a new “inspire” concept by Adaptive Path and Mozilla to give people a look at what the browser looks like in the future. It’s awesome. The user interface is great, it has lots of important visual queues, and it enables real time collaboration and user generated content."

Wow, Ryan.  Awesome?  Really? I couldn't disagree with you more on this.  I'm really surprised this came from Adaptive Path - I really expect a little more from those guys. 

THE GOOD
  • using the Z-axis for time
  • blurring the online/offline aspects and moving online content to the desktop 
THE BAD: 
  •  Holy clutter Batman! This is simply not a well organized interface. With things moving around and being hidden and lots of weird symbols to memorize (that petal-of-dots interface makes zero sense), it looks like it's set up for a very awkward and confusing user experience.  ORGANIZE my data - show me more files in a more organized way.  The last thing I want is a dock on every side of my screen and a giant cloud of content on my desktop.
  • What's with that giant arm thing she's holding? There aren't any interactions she does that benefit from the huge peripheral.  I think there's huge untapped potential in new interfaces and peripherals to power them.  This simply doesn't cut it - it's a step backwards from my mouse and keyboard.
  • What's with all those annoying sounds? There's a reason we stopped doing those back in 1995 - they're horribly distracting.  The last thing I want when I click something is for it to yell back, in some insanely happy voice, "HI! THANKS FOR CLICKING ME! LET'S PLAY!"  Sounds should be used quite sparingly, and when they are, they should be as short and simple as possible.  The quiet mouse "click" is about as intense as most of us can handle.
  • Real-time collaboration is really distracting. The last thing I need is a bunch of people trying to voice chat me all day. IM and email are great because they're passive communication - we don't need to collaborate on everything all the time.  If you want to enhance the way we collaborate and communicate, try organizing and consolidating all our passive communication forms into a more centralized hub.
  • Why the heck would you demonstrate your awesome next-gen design ideas in a video featuring farmers arguing about rainfall?
In conclusion, please don't make me use that thing.

4 comments:

Joe Johnston said...

I have to say I totally agree.

RJ said...

I feel like I need to explain how much I love Adapative Path. They're great thought leaders and have some of the best minds in design today. I'd like to sit down with Jesse James Garret and talk through the interface with him - I'm sure he'd have good things to say.

However, I think my points still stand - I really don't see these concepts ever getting into the marketplace. Maybe I'm totally wrong.

John Wilker said...

ok is it me or did that video feel just like the one from Bill Gates "The Road ahead" book?

ben.clinkinbeard said...

Agreed. On every point.