Spooky UI story one day too late

Posted on November 1, 2009

I’m getting this spooky user interface story in one day too late for Halloween, but what the heck. I was talking to my mother the other day. As background, she’s retired now, but she used computers for at least the last twenty years of work. She also spends a fair amount of time on the web (with firefox). So she hardly qualifies as a technophobe or the kind of user you simply can’t coax into using your site.

Anyway, for one reason or another, she ended up a while ago with two different wish lists, one at Chapters and one at Amazon. This accident led over time to a bit of duplication, so she went to prune her Chapters wish list. But when she tried to do this, she found the user interface so complicated and frustrating that after a lot of fiddling and fussing and back clicking and scratching her head, she decided to delete her entire Chapters wish list. So now she just uses the Amazon one.

This is what happens when you make your user interface confusing. If you’re responsible in one way or another for implementing a good user interface, you should find that a very spooooooky story.