Sample Thunderbird UI redesign

Klaus Hartnegg hartnegg at uni-freiburg.de
Sat Nov 19 20:23:50 UTC 2016


Am 19.11.2016 um 19:17 schrieb Benjamin Kerensa:
> I think your missing the point which is you shouldn't be shooting down
> ideas without user feedback and data to support shooting it down.

One could equally well argue that those, who want to change a 
surprisingly successful project, have to provide data to support their 
suggestions.

Yes, a few years ago, we have seen an increase in size of icons, 
compared with previous touch displays. However: the reason was purely 
technical, because plain and simple capacitive touch detection is 
cheaper, but a lot less precise. That's why we can exactly specify the 
day when this trend started: it was the introduction of the iPhone. This 
was the first mass-market device that used capacitive touch detection.

But recently we see the trend in the opposite direction: tablets get 
pencils, stylus, or whatever you want to call them. Their purpose is not 
to keep finger prints off the glass, but to provide finer control. 
Interstingly both Apple and Microsoft are doing this same thing, despite 
otherwise following opposite strategies as to how similar the UI of 
mobile and desktop should be.

In the light of these facts, I would like to see some really good 
arguments for a suggestion to increase icons, and insert whitespace into 
a desktop UI. I must admit that I haven't looked at the rest of the 
suggestions. I'm not generally against improving the UI.

Note that I am not generally against whitespace. Regarding the too 
similar direction-icons for incoming/outgoing emails, I was the one who 
suggested that the bigggest contrast to some symbol is not another 
symbol, but whitespace. However in that case the whitespace would no be 
added, but it is replacing a symbol with whitespace. Whitespace is a 
great design element. But I would not add unneccesary whitespace to an 
UI, except when necessary because technical limitations of the hardware. 
We do not have this situation on the desktop.

Klaus


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