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Unformatted text preview: Define fundamental Web design terminology. Interface An interface enables a user to interact with a system to perform a task. For example: • website navigation (hyperlinks, search tools, etc.) enables a user to find content • a shopping cart/basket system enables goods to be ordered • the formatting palette in Microsoft Word enables a user to change text colour, size, font, etc. An interface may combine a number of types of sensory cues: • visual/graphic: text ( labels ); shape, colour and size; spatial cues such as beveling and shadows to indicate ‘click-ability’; icons; change when moused-over; etc. • aural: speech, beeps, clicks, etc. • tactile (touch) An effective interface combines the available, contextually-appropriate sensory cues to: • inform users of the task the interface can be used to complete • provide feedback (in response to interaction) to confirm task status (often referred to as closure ). Design patterns Due to the decentralised nature of the web, interface design has also been popularised. The need for a new and often less-technical audience to engage with interface issues has given rise to the alternative term ‘design pattern’. The Yahoo Developer Network defines a [design] pattern as: …an optimal solution to a common problem within a specific context. The above definition combines the companion dimensions of: scenario the situation in which an interface is to be used use-case (loosely) the task(s) the user will complete using the interface path how a task is broken down into meaningful stages and sequences interface conventions sensory cues and interaction models likely to be known by the user Interface conventions When an interface element is recognized and understood consistently, by a significant user-group, it becomes a convention. Hyperlinks On a webpage, one convention for indicating a hyperlink is an underline. For a user familiar with this convention, their expectation is that clicking underlined text will link them to a new location: either a new webpage, or a different point on the same webpage. Underlining webpage text for decorative purposes, or to indicate emphasis, sets an false expectation. This impacts on the ability of the user to complete their chosen task, as they may not be able to differentiate between hyperlinks and (non-navigational) content. Interface conventions in other media Interface conventions also exist for other media. For example, in Western tradition, a number displayed in the corner of a printed page usually indicates the position of the page within the overall structure of the book. It is also expected that pages are arranged sequentially, in ascending order. These conventions enable specific content to be found via a table of contents or index, without reading every page....
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This note was uploaded on 07/28/2010 for the course DUS 28937414 taught by Professor Mr.rock during the Spring '10 term at Acton School of Business.
- Spring '10