06 October 2008

Calculating interface 'friction'

the juxtaposition of
john gruber's concept of interface friction
with david li's copula formula

has refocused an old intuition
about the science of human factors:

that someday we should have a formula
for rating the 'friction' in an interface

  • how many clicks
    for each important action

  • how much mental strain
    to refocus the brain
    (like shifting contexts)

  • how much unintuitive complexity
    to master

  • how much opportunity
    to be publicly humiliated

web 2.0 has made considerable progress
on the first two of these

but achieving sufficient mastery
to avoid self-embarrassment
is a gigantic, growing problem