Application usability v.s. web usability

Application usability v.s. web usability

Post by Matthij » Wed, 01 Nov 2006 17:14:39

I am looking for some references to any user interface design
standards, particularly those for .net / winforms applications.

I am developping an application for a sales company (large number of of
order entrys a day, new and experienced users). I have read several
reports of people like Jacob Nielsen, however he is describing web

Can anyone point me to any accepted standards for the design of
software interfaces, books, websites etc? How would you quantify the
usability of a software interface OR it's compliance to recognised

Kind regards,


Application usability v.s. web usability

Post by testworl » Thu, 02 Nov 2006 20:17:37

For usability, ISO has given a definition, but in practice, we care it
in another way. Please try if


Application usability v.s. web usability

Post by justin cre » Thu, 02 Nov 2006 23:13:22


Unfortunately there is no real "standards". There are usability laws in
some places like California, but those are in place to help people with
disabilities (blind, deaf, etc.). User interface design is something
that is highly debated and some companies commit many employees to work

That said, there are many great resources to learn UI best practices.
Google scholar ( ) has many papers on the
subject. Here's one paper that is pretty good
( ). Joel Spolsky wrote a book
that is a very short read and covers most of the basics of UI design.
The name of the book is "User Interface Design for Programmers". He
also has many good essays on his website (
Another major authority on UI design is BJ Fogg
( ). One last person to read up on, Jakob Nielsen.

As I said, this is a subject you can almost debate forever. The best
thing to do is continue to test your UI. The only real standard that
matters is how other people (aka your users) feel about your interface.
Hope that helps, good luck!

Application usability v.s. web usability

Post by R.C. Metzg » Fri, 03 Nov 2006 00:52:26

Usability is determined in the context of a set of users. What is
usable for one audience (such as professional system admins) may be
unusable for another audience (such as professional accountants). So
to assess usability, you must test usability with users who are
representative of your target audience.

Unless you are developing programming tools, the one group guaranteed
NOT to be representative of your users is the development team that
produced the application.

Here are two excellent books on how to do usability testing that are
easily accessible. If you perform usability testing according to the
methods they suggest, and incorporate the results back into your
application, you should have a very usable application for your

A Practical Guide to Usability Testing by Joseph S. Dumas and Janice C.
Redish (Paperback - Oct 1999)

Handbook of Usability Testing: How to Plan, Design, and Conduct
Effective Tests by Jeffrey Rubin (Paperback - Apr 1994)

You don't have to test dozens of users to get useful results. There is
evidence that testing with 4-6 users will identify most of the
usability problems with your application.

R.C. Metzger