Talk:User interface

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External Link Question[edit]

Is this external link [] appropriate for this article? I am new to Wikipedia community and need advice on this question.


Matthew Dombrow 10:49, May 28, 2008 (MTN) —Preceding comment was added at 16:53, 29 May 2008 (UTC)

can we replace any datagrids with excel? if so please can any one give the pros and cons of the issue!

what datagrids are you talking about? – Alexander Konovalenko 11:30, 4 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Edits done on 26 June 2005[edit]

I reverted some parts of edits done by GeneMosher on 26 June 2005. There were no errors in them per se, I just wished to keep the text concise and reflect the most common use of the term (by deferring mentions of touchscreens as so far touch isn't that much more common that other "minority modalities"). Please edit the page or comment here if you disagree. Aapo Laitinen June 28, 2005 21:46 (UTC)

Can't say your narrowmindedness and your comfort with censorship appeals to me[edit]

So you're a Human Computer-Interaction Student? Well, well. Let me tell you who I am. I designed a touchscreen interface paradigm that has been copied the world over and covers the globe. Millions of people use it. Just about every touchscreen interface in the world borrows freely and liberally from my work, none of which was patented and none of which requires royalties. And you don't think my mention of touchscreens in a discussion of user interfaces is noteworthy. You can surely understand my position if I think you have your head up your ass.

Every time I walk into a restaurant I see people using touchscreens and the software paradigm that I developed 20 years ago. Every time I go into the post office I see touchscreens. In supermarkets, I see people using touchscreens to cash out their own purchases. In many of the new cars I see people using touchscreens. On all the new consumer electronics gear I see touchscreens replacing buttons, knobs & dials. In the library, I see people checking out materials with touchscreens. The latest airplanes all have touchscreens. And you have the nerve to dismiss all of this? It's clear that you don't get out much. There are 4,000 stories in Google News today worldwide with the word touchscreen or touch-screen in them. I don't think you have any idea what the concept of User Interface means in 2005. And you think you're going to tell us all about user interfaces on the cell phones and the airplanes they're designing and building today without talking about touchscreens? Let us all know how that goes, won't you? It should be quite a laugh. GeneMosher

Denigratory comments serve no purpose[edit]

Mosher, your response isn't what I'd expect from a person of your credentials. In particular, accusations of censorship are entirely uncalled for.

Regarding your assertion that I didn't value your "mention of touchscreens in a discussion of user interfaces", I stand by my opinion that in the context where you made the mentions, they did not add value to the text. I tend to apply "when in doubt, leave it out" guideline to editing in addition to punctuation, and therefore removed the mentions. However, I do recognize this isn't an official Wikipedia guideline and I do think the mentions of touchscreens aren't harmful either, so I restored some of them.

I think you're overstating the importance of touchscreens in present day life. Though they are ubiquitous in several fields, they are still a sideline in the grand scale of things. I'd like to clarify that I'm not at all against getting more material about them to Wikipedia, only that I disagree about a bit of copyediting. I look forward to enjoying your constructive contributions.

In conclusion, I admit that my partial revert may have been unnecessary. However, it was done in good faith and I do think it had at least some justification and that the tone of your comment was insulting enough to warrant an apology or further evidence to support your assertion of my cluelesness. Aapo Laitinen June 29, 2005 16:23 (UTC)

I think you should not try to make this about me or my style[edit]

I didn't erase any of your efforts or contribution. You did erase mine. That's the difference here. If I don't like what you've done and tell you so by providing so many examples then you ought to be able to deal with that. It's damned arrogant of you to praise your own writing and your erasure of my writing as "good faith" while you dismiss my writing, a simple mention of touchscreens, as without value. And it's damned pious of you to take offense to writing which includes a comprehensive list of all the ways that touchscreens are being used to revolutionize user interfaces in every country of the world.

If you don't like to read about touchscreens in the news then customize your Google News by putting -touchscreen and -'touch screen' keywords in your filter so none of the thousands of daily stories about touchscreens will ever show up as you read the news. You can shape the news you read and interpret it any way you like.

One thing before I get the hell out of your yard. There are billions of people on this planet who can't read, can't write, can't afford a computer, can't do ANY of what you and I do every day. Who in hell is going to design a user interface to a world full of useful, easy to use software for illiterate people without PCs? Well, I can do it - I am doing it, and, fortunately, what Wikipedia's article on User Interface says or doesn't say about touchscreens has absolutely no bearing on it. I can provide illiterate people with a way to benefit from software and work together in a 21st century manner without putting a single computer within ten thousand miles of any of them and without requiring them to learn to read and write. I can do that because of what I have achieved with touchscreen user interfaces but I can't do it if I have to waste my time trying to get a few hundred million PC-uber-alles people and keyboard/mouse-uber-alles people the hell out of the way. You keep the words pretty - that's your job, apparently. GeneMosher

Blowing this out of proportion, aren't we?[edit]

This article is my yard as little as it is yours. I still don't see which effort I happened to erase, I don't think my erasures went beyond copyediting some paragraphs. The important word here is context. In my opinion, touchscreens are relevant in the context of this article, but not in the context of each and every paragraph of the article. Your contributions are welcome (and what would it matter if I didn't welcome them?). For example, some issues you mentioned above could easily be included in the article. I will elaborate my reply after work. Aapo Laitinen June 30, 2005 05:08 (UTC)

It's a bit hard for me to not make this about your style, since your style seems to be about making this about me. Not to mention typecasting me as a member of a mouse mob that is out there to repress the illiterate people of the world. If you assumed me to be a reasonable person of normal intelligence, this discussion could be resolved in just a few sentences.

I just double-checked if I was missing something crucial and I do think I made a sound call. Your edits consisted of adding a mention of touchscreens to a paragraph about "user interface (of a computer program)", adding a mention of touchscreens to a list item about graphical user interfaces, and rewording a list item about touch interfaces. Together, they were less than a dozen words. Of these three points, I thought the last one was a clear improvement. The remaining two points, on the other hand, added in my opinion unnecessary mentions of touchscreens to where the mentions improve neither understanding nor comprehensiveness.

I did back those edits, but I also posted a note indicating I would be interested in learning more about the rationale behind them. Which you've indeed provided (see my comment above, though).

I fail to see how the Google News metric is relevant to this discussion. For example, today the query "touch screen" OR touchscreen yields 1,600 results and computer mouse OR keyboard gives 3,100 results. If we do a Google web search with the same terms, the results are 3.5 million and 30 million. If you wish to present a more convincing argument along these lines, please provide references to actual statistics or research.

One of the points where I certainly agree with you is that touchscreens are not to be dismissed when it comes to information appliances etc. and as I indicate below (section Article cleanup), this article doesn't currently discuss them at all. So intead of trying to inject touchscreens to context where they currently have hardly any relevance (user interfaces for general-purpose computing), could you please consider refocusing your efforts to expanding this article and thus providing a context where they do matter already (user interfaces of information appliances)?

My goal has never to disrespect you or to marginalize your expertise. I wish you'd return the same courtesy to me. If you take an another look at the structure of this article, you may begin to see my point about contexts.

Respectfully, Aapo Laitinen June 30, 2005 15:22 (UTC)

Article cleanup[edit]

I decided to kickstart the cleanup. I hope this new version is an improvement. I find it still it has at least the following problems:

  • The definition doesn't feel right
  • The further reading list too long compared to the scope of the article. A shorter list of recommended introductory reading might be better?
  • Some problems with expression

Aapo Laitinen 12:55, 2005 Apr 5 (UTC)

  • The section about usability should mention ergonomics too
  • Should include a section about user interfaces outside computing (e.g. cell phones, set-top boxes)
  • Should include a section about man-machine interfaces (e.g. airplanes, control rooms)

Aapo Laitinen 21:00, 2005 Apr 7 (UTC)

Merge with Human–computer interaction?[edit]

These two article seem to cover a great deal of common ground. Can they be merged? --Piet Delport 05:46, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

The articles have very different emphasis. UI focuses on the actual types of interfaces. HCI focuses on the research and application of this research to creating such interfaces. While they certainly mesh, I think they'd be better off as separate articles. --Ronz 14:55, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

External links[edit]

I've removed all external links per WP:EL and WP:SPAM. I went through them rather quickly, so may inadvertantly removed something that should be reintroduced or at least discussed. --Ronz 00:46, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Acronym Sources[edit]

I see that someone added reference tags to two of the acronyms used. Instead of filling them in, Ive decided to remove them as it will only make the article more complex and force the use of sources that would otherwise be deemed wikispam. Here are some links anyway.

HMI - Human-Machine Interface

OIT - Operator Interface Terminal

OIC - Operator Interface Console

MMI - Man-Machine Interface

In the field of industrial automation, the term most frequently used is HMI. After that is OIT. I personally haven't seen OIC or MMI used. To make things more complex, I often use "touchpanel" or "touchscreen" so operators know what I'm talking about. We don't even have an agreement within our office. Our schematics say OIT but throughout the code comments read HMI. The various terms stem from the proprietary nature of the industrial controls business, where vendors often spawn new phrases to appear different from the competition. In the end it is a matter of personal preference. Krushia (talk) 02:15, 27 October 2008 (UTC)

But the topic shouldn't be referring to things that are not well-known enough to have reliable sources Tedickey (talk) 10:50, 27 October 2008 (UTC)


I'm removing the "Standardization" section which just said

In 2008, ISO has published its standard of ISO/IEC 24752 to specify the technical requirement of IT system.

Clicking the link, I see that it somehow relates to user interfaces, but it's hard to tell how, and if it has any impact at all on a computer user's reality. Does it define the terminology? Will the next Windows come with a new ISO interface? Etc. Feel free to add it again – but please give some context. JöG (talk) 08:13, 16 August 2009 (UTC)

I think this edition is still needed

for the sake of the following....

-- (talk) 02:47, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 02:56, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 03:06, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

even though the above history may not reflect to truth. Somehow the mentioning of the standardization have been two years old -- (talk) 03:14, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

source for consistency[edit]

David Boundy's notes don't have much to do with user interfaces, and in particular are unrelated to the ip-editor's personal essay. Tedickey (talk) 13:55, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

For the benefit of editors without access to the given source, Boundy's notes deal with programming style; consistency is mentioned in the context of indentation and program variables. Tedickey (talk) 14:27, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

user environment?[edit]

user environment redirects to this article. What does it mean? --Abdull (talk) 13:45, 7 March 2010 (UTC)

I'm surprised that not many publications around for the relationship between.....[edit]

the topic of WYSIWIG and this one according to Google scholar

although the loose connections have been discussed

-- (talk) 03:50, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

who knows that probably in the future all the topics at this site are related to the one of soul hijacking...ha....ha...ha... -- (talk) 03:50, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 03:53, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

-- (talk) 03:54, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

or soul cleansing....@___@

-- (talk) 03:59, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

~__@ ~___~

-- (talk) 04:01, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

Maintaining the NPOV style at Consistency section[edit]

Boundlessly, you say "now do the math". Problem is, doing the math by yourself is original research and is prohibited by Wikipedia editorial policies (Wikipedia:Verifiability in particular). Also the "billions in loses" is a redflag: exceptional claims require exceptional sources.

Go read those policies and see how they apply to your edits. Claiming that the sources say what they don't say is a no-no. Also controversial claims (and the efficiency of the MS Ribbon is certainly controversial) must be attributed to the sources, not stated at the article as facts. If you don't address these problems in your edits I'll flag the section with a NPOV tag and begin a dispute resolution to get feedback from other users. Nothing is indisputable at Wikipedia, and that's by design ;-) Diego Moya (talk) 05:40, 21 October 2010 (UTC)

I've removed a paragraph with multiple issues and copied it here. Please fix it before trying to reincorporate it to the article. The major problem is the lack of references; a good estimation of the economic impact should evaluate how the costs of the required training balance against the improvements in performance provided by the new interface. Diego Moya (talk) 16:41, 28 October 2010 (UTC)

Multiplying out the numbers in this survey [in context, "this survey" is perfectly clear -- it's referred to in the exactly preceding sentence. Quit creating nonissues.] suggests that the total cost imposed on users[elucidate reason=does that mean for each single user? Of course not. "users" means plural, the total population of users. No native speaker of English would read it any other way. Don't create nonissues.] by Microsoft's change of user interface in Office 2007 was in the multiple billions of dollars.

  • the thing to clarify is "multiplying out", not "this survey"
  • we don't write suggestions here at Wikipedia, we use verifiable information
  • The wording could still be much better, which was my point. It is unclear what users you refer to, and "total cost" remains undefined. Diego Moya

The second part of your question is easy too. "balance against the improvements in performance provided by the new interface" is also a cost, additive instead of "balance against." The survey that you identified found that the "performance" change was a loss, and that the costs continue to accrue with time. The survey identifies two separate costs -- the learning curve cost, and the productivity cost of the constant 3 clicks to do a task in the new interface where the old interface requires only one click.

I explained already that the survey can't be extrapolated to users beyond the few that participated in it, and that those "identifed costs" were self-identified. This means that the learning time and performance cost are opinions reported by users who hated the interface, not an objective fact proven by a researcher in a lab. This is a problem with most online surveys, not just this one, that's why they're not accepted as scientific knowledge. If you want the article to say anything beyond this, find better sources. Diego Moya (talk) 04:18, 29 October 2010 (UTC)

Several of the lawyers I work with have gotten past the learning curve, and find that the new interface is slower than the old one. The new interface is only good for new users, for the first few hours. Then once you get into production mode of doing real work, all the extra click click click is a continuing drain on productivity.

So what questions are left?

Look, facts are facts. Experienced users hate the new interface, and it reduces their productivity. The non-neutral POV is yours, as you try to suppress the facts. (talk) 00:55, 29 October 2010 (UTC)

We can request a third opinion if you wish. The fact that "several lawyers you work with have some problems with Office 2007" is a different fact than "Office 2007 costs multiple billions of dollars", and you're treating them as the same. Anyway you'd have to explain much better why the cost of the new Office 2007 interface is so important in a small section that explains consistency in general. Diego Moya (talk) 04:14, 29 October 2010 (UTC)


I tried reverting the vandalism (07:45, 30 October 2010), but it seems I am doing more harm than good, so someone should take a look at it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

The date for the "Graphical user interface, 1981 to present" notation is wrong....[edit]

The 3-Rivers Computing "PERQ" GUI computer was shown to the public in July 1980 and started commercial sales in August, 1980, so that date should be 1980 and not 1981. The Xerox Star GUI computer did not go on sale till later in April, 1981, the PERQ was the first to be sold, not the STAR.


The gallery captions frequently use the term "HHI", but the article never defines what it means. JIP | Talk 12:22, 23 February 2014 (UTC)

Is it a typographical error? Should it read HMI? Best Regards. (talk) 13:18, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
It's a translation error. HHI could stand for "Human-human interface" or "hand-held interface", but obviously the images are not those. I've "blamed" the creation of the gallery descriptions to this edit, and the initials were translated from the German "Mensch-Maschine-Schnittstelle", which should be "HMI" (or "MMI", Man-Machine Interface). I have corrected it. Diego (talk) 15:08, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

Graphical User Interface, 1968 to... 1988?[edit]

The section entitled "Graphical User Interface, 1968 to present" (under History) is a kind of timeline. Leaving aside the fact that this is possibly not an ideal format, is there a reason it peters out around the '80s? Felixphew (Ar! Ar! Ar!) 09:56, 3 July 2014 (UTC)