Friday, December 19, 2014

Usability in the Movies

Usability is one of those characteristics of technology that has always been there. We need not look far for difficult tech, poor design, or confusion or over elaborate clock-work. This article is really just for fun. Let's find those funny tech moments in the movies and watch as we are blissfully reminded of what we must deal with on a day-to-day.

Christmas Story
When it comes to getting your document to stand out more prominently than the competition, Ralph has it right with the red cover (attention to detail). How could Miss Shields NOT give Ralphie and A++++?

Transformers: Age of Extinction
Sometimes it's difficult to fine tune your design. Especially when there are multiple other people with their own variations of your vision. Good communications through words and visuals can help. When dealing with sound though, it might be a bit more difficult. The right combination of communication channels can 'transform' your design! :)

Sister Act
Sorry that this isn't a movie clip. I'll keep looking until I can find it. Basically the usability point being made here is that even a service such as 'church' has room to improve in order to better meet the needs and expectations of their audience.

Batman Begins
Great example of designing in a box Batman! How do you know the common criminal is going to be afraid of your personal childhood fear?

I actually had this experience one time. These guys are trying to figure out how to turn on an Apple Computer. So embarrassing.

Men In Black
Poor chair usability, poor test packet experience, poor Will Smith!

If a user can't figure out what the purpose is from a quick glance... Well... duh.

Galaxy Quest
Even with the bests quantitative information, a design can miss the mark. It's important to always have the conversation with your users... Otherwise you may end up with a response similar to what is happening in this clip. Check out's article titled Risks of Quantitative Studies

The Incredibles
You know it's a dark pattern in Iterative Design when the human/computer interaction perpetually gets worse.

Catch Me If You Can
This is a great example of using the "Halo" affect to con people. Bad ethic, but great example.

The Little Mermaid
Although this isn't a movie clip , it does elude to a usability topic. Sometimes we think we have a good grasp of the main problem of a design. In order to really know where the pulse of the issue is, it's important to do rigorous up-front usability testing.

Hope you enjoyed. ~e

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