What Design Should Convey

Apr 01 2019

A big part of web design is conveying purpose. This is so that when a user looks at their screen they know what they can or should do.

I’d like to suggest that you can blend the words can and should, and create something interesting.

I got a new USB stick yesterday and it had a red ring on the back that you twist to get access to the memory stick. The thing is I didn’t know that and the package did not suggest it. But it didn’t matter. The different color and texture of the ring made me gravitate towards it. Once touching it, it was clear that it rotated and the rest is history.

My point here is that it might make sense (especially with newer concepts) just to make the design unique. Keep it replicable in other settings so that this can become the new indicator for X function, but just get users to be interested. Once they click, hover, drag, etc. just make the purpose clear and then it’s all the same to them. To me it seems like an effective way to teach and solve a hard problem.

Maybe this looks like a softly glowing button. Or maybe animation, different colors, size. I imagine anything bold will work.

My only caveat would be to do this in simpler settings. If my USB had ten other buttons and switches, the decoding process would have been more frustrating than magical.