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Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 5, 2009 8:07 UTC (Thu) by DeletedUser32991 ((unknown), #32991)
Parent article: Ubuntu debates usability changes

I think that it is way cool to see Ubuntu experimenting to improve usability in this way. As much as the initial implementation might not be optimal, discussion without end will not lead to any improvements, either. It is really neat to see them pulling this off across the system and Ubuntu deserves credit for pioneering changes on this scale.

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Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 7, 2009 12:15 UTC (Sat) by rwmj (subscriber, #5474) [Link]

This isn't "experimenting to improve usability", this is people gabbing away their opinions on a
mailing list. You can perform real experiments on users - it's somewhat costly and can't be done
over the internet, but it can be done, and can be objectively measured.

Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 7, 2009 19:08 UTC (Sat) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

theis is at least the second comment saying that you can prove usability.

yes you can, but you are only proving usability for the users skill set that you test with.

you can get _very_ different answers to usability questions from users that have never seen a computer before (but you can't repeat the test with those users, because they now have the experiance of your first test) then if you test with people who have used windows for years then if you test with people who have used Macs for years.

which set of results is 'more valid' is definantly arguable.

Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 7, 2009 22:58 UTC (Sat) by rwmj (subscriber, #5474) [Link]

And also by testing monkeys and cats. What's your point? Test the target group of people you want to sell your OS to.

Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 8, 2009 1:33 UTC (Sun) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

but the target audience for Linux distros is all of the above. so which answer is 'right'?

Ubuntu *implements* usability changes

Posted Mar 8, 2009 9:19 UTC (Sun) by rwmj (subscriber, #5474) [Link]

No answer is right. You test all the groups of people that you want to be able to successfully use the UI. This makes the whole thing much more expensive, but that's what you get when you want a UI which is useful for grandmas, astronauts and monkeys. Back in the real world, businesses decide narrow segments where they want to market and sell their software, and test only those, trading off the cost of developing for each segment with potential return.

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