This was the first time that I saw a flush in this shape. Although it was new to me, I had no problem figuring out how to use it. All I needed to do was to turn it clockwise. The affordability of the button is clear. You know where you should grab it and how you should turn it. In my opinion that’s the sign for a good design.
A nifty accessory for squeezing lemon in tea. It fits a small enough piece of lemon and squeezes all the juice out of it. I like it because its design is intuitive and you can clearly see its affordability. I also like that I don’t get lemon juice on my hands :)
As you can see this is a shaver which works with batteries. The part which holds the batteries is made of inflexible plastic. A lot of force is needed to put the batteries in or take them out of the machine. That’s because you have to push half of the battery in till it settles in its place. Or in case you want to take them out, you have to force your finger nails around the batteries and pull them outside. Since the battery holder is not flexible, it gives you the impression that it is going to break any second during the process. I believe that giving users the feeling of safety while they use your design is a sign of good interaction design. If you take that feeling away they may stop using your design and go to another designer products. One way that I can think of for fixing this shaver is to place the battery holder in a way that it can be completely seen and reached (don’t hide a part inside the shaver). This way the user can easily put the battery inside (or take it out) its holder without using any force.
Here is something I’ve never seen before. This is a control for pedestrian crossing light and is designed for blind people. Usually the use of braille or/and sound are involved for devices which are designed for blind people. But here there is nothing to touch or hear. The surface of the control is flat (so no button to push) and when the light goes green you don’t hear continuous tick sound to indicate it is safe to pass. So why is there a drawing of a blind guy on the device?
There is a red iron arrow under the device. I don’t know if that is for guiding blind people in the right direction or if it is just a screw used for opening and servicing the device. Even if that is to help blind people find their direction, if there is no sound involved to indicate whether the light is red or green, it is not only going to help blind people but is going to put them in the risk of having a car accident.
Have you ever tried calling abroad via Skype on your smart phone? I did today and to my surprise it was not that straightforward. Usually when you are calling abroad you dial two zeroes before the country code, right? It’s not possible to do so on Skype on smart phone though. If you enter the code of the country, Skype recognizes the country but is not able to dial your number.
What you have to do is to enter a plus sign instead of a double zero. My question is, why? Why can’t I just do what I’m used to do? Why do I have to push and hold the zero button to enter a plus sign when I can easily just dial a zero?
A clock that can project the time if you clap, cool! But if you try to delete an alarm, then you come to conclusion that this clock was made in hell. It was a couple of days ago when we finally found out how to remove an alarm without taking the batteries out. :) As you can see, there are five buttons on the back of the clock. If you want to set an alarm you should go to the alarm mode by pushing MODE button which makes sense. But if you want to remove the alarm, you have to exit the alarm mode and push UP button to disable/remove the alarm. I personally like to know how the designer came up with this design solution.
Look at this weird-shaped tea spoon. I don’t know about you but whenever I’m offering my guests tea, the tea spoon keeps falling off the saucer. The shape of this tea spoon solves that problem but creates another problem. Let me ask you what do you do with your spoon after adding sugar/honey/… and stirring your tea? Do you put the spoon in your saucer or will you leave it in your cup? Well, I sometimes do one and sometimes the other. But if I leave the normal tea spoon in my cup and then drink my tea, nothing serious will happen. My tea spoon keeps rolling from one side to another till I get it out of the cup. But with this modernly designed one you should be careful. I stirred my tea; stuck the spoon in the wall of the glass while still being amazed by its shape, then kept talking with my friends. After a minute or so I picked up my glass and wanted to drink my tea. And there it happened; the spoon went right in one of my eyes. I’m OK, I’m OK! But it’s nice to see by making one little change in the shape of a tea spoon you can resolve one issue while adding another one. It is maybe not that big of a problem but still it requires you to change your habits (which is not that easy) and if you are not careful you may get hurt.
I got on the bus and put my ticket in this ticket punching machine. Nothing happened! I took the ticket out and put it back in again. No, nothing! Is it broken? I let the guy behind me punch his ticket. Ah, that’s how it works? Weird! You have to put your ticket in then pull the black part towards yourself to punch the ticket. Since the affordability of the black part is not shown, the interaction with the machine gets really confusing. Putting a little arrow beside the black part could solve the problem or maybe the designers could design it like a slot machine with a handle beside it which shows its affordability.
“Oh, where should people put out their cigarettes? Do we have to change all our trash bins now?” As you can see they didn’t. They just enhanced the trash bins all over the city by adding “ash trays” to them. It’s a cheap solution, it doesn’t look good, but it’s simple, useful and it’s keeping the streets clean!
Our new fancy coffee machine is not that user friendly. There is a little screen on it where you can see the progress of the machine and whether your coffee is ready. In the bottom of the screen it says Sugar. “But how can I add sugar?” one asked. “Ah, push the metal buttons under the screen” one answered. “OK, I want coffee with milk and sugar” and she pushed Coffee with milk button. The machine started to make a constant noise meaning that the coffee is getting ready. “Wait a minute! It didn’t ask me how much sugar I want, can I add it now? Damn it! It says No Sugar” she kept pushing the plus button under the screen but no result. On the screen it said “The coffee is ready”. “OK, fine! But the lid over the cup is closed. Should I open the lid or will it open automatically? Hmm, it’s not moving I think I should do it. I hope I don’t break anything.” Yes, that was my first experience with our new coffee machine and no, I didn’t break anything. But you know what? Apparently someone else had the same problem with sugar because there was a whole mess around the cup holder in the machine.