Defending Bob (and other unopopular UI choices)

Adam Barr really went out on a limb with this one but reading the comments is where you’ll find even more gold in this great blog post.

Dumping on the iPod, promoting the “Designer Era” and then hearing about different ways people interpret design.

It’s a great post (comments included). I don’t know if Adam was behind the “Microsoft iPod” video but many of the comments make the same point. “Apple does defrag behind the scenes, if MS did it, they would still put up a big sign telling you they were doing it”.

And no, Adam doesn’t defend Bob 1.0 completely – “Windows does not necessarily need to become Bob, it just needs to be designed right for *its* customers. Maybe some brilliant designers can figure out one UI that works for everyone, or not.” (for the record, Trish loved using Spot the dog as the Office 200x assistant and we did get a copy of Bob because it DID make computing somewhat less confrontational. Was it perfect? Absolutely not – but it did include some interesting ideas)

But hey – I’m still looking for a useful UI because the whole Windows folder/explorer approach just doesn’t work (oh yeah, the finder works the same way) – maybe that’s why Google gets it right with gMail. You want to find something? Just type it into search and there it is.

Maybe this is part of what Office 2007 is trying to do – but myself? I still find myself trying to find where all the old options were. I’ve tried “Rooms” – still doesn’t make sense. I find I’m living directly in a browser these days so maybe something will show up there. But – how do I code within a browser? Hmmm…

Maybe MindJet should come up with a Web-version of MindManager. It could be a cool Ajax app for sure – and sync directly between mobile and desktop versions and could even do a great job of showing the links between everything you look at. Kind of like Cnet’s News Mapper tool.

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