Discover secret message from WordPress, it this user-centered? Or an April fool joke?!

Have you ever use the revision function in WordPress, when I was trying to compare revision but suddenly,

Compare Revision

A secret message appear, it is Danger!?

Danger!01Danger!02Danger!03 Danger!04 Danger!05 Danger!06

Is this part of the April fool matrix joke, and why I have to wait for the message to type out?

Try it yourself, scare your friend, maybe! I don’t think this is user-centered, maybe designer think this is funny, but this can make the user feel bad and helpless.


Sort by Magic, who is using it really!

Did you notice when you use google reader, now you can sort your rss feed posts by “Magic”

What does this mean? Find out this sort option provide a more personalize ranking for individual user by learning what are the most interested posts to individual over time. Does this mean just like google search, you never know what you really will get? (half of the time, you have in your first 5 search result, really?)[find more information post]

And this playful name is kind of confuse to me just like other product “I’m Feeling Lucky” button in the google’s home page. Those feature’s name are not only confusing to the user, ironically, it costs the company 100 million dollars a year when 1% user search directly go to the website bypassed all the google ads. Does this means playfulness sometime have great cost? Great idea needs to back up by good user data in order to create great product at the end.

Do you use these features at all? What should we rename them?

When should we blog? Come cast your vote!

When do you do you blogging?
How to blog with an user-oriented approach , or a writer/designer oriented approach?
When do you think your blog post have a higher chance to be read?



It is important to design your blog post tailor to the reader’s needs both timing and right contents.

And after reading the midterm evaluation report from Dr. V., I realize blogging it did not come natural to me at first, I am still having trouble sometime.
Maybe this is your case, don’t give up, just keep at it. When you see other people read and benefit from your post, you will do better and better.

Here is my blogging calendar, feel free to add to your own calendar. Let us finish this semester strong, and more we can utilize what we learn in the future.

Again enjoy blogging!

Mapping, is it that difficult in life?

Which side should the computer in the computer lab? So many time I have use the computer in a public lab and mistakenly plug in my flash drive to the wrong computer. And realize I am wrong after 5 minutes because I can not find my flash drive folder. I was embarrassed about it. But after couple time, I wonder is this my own false or  can the design of the lab can do something to help me , a graduate student to better find my place. It is place the computer on the right the solution? How about the people who is left handed, will they want the computer on their left? Personally, if the computer monitor have USB port build-in or a extension cable for the USB cable can illuminate this mapping problem once for all. But if the cost is not allowed, we can use a screen -> arrow to indicate the locate of the main computer or just a sticker can be very helpful.

Other example of mapping problem I found is imagine when you try to find a class room for the first time, have you ever pass the door of the class room, then you realize you have passed and have to go back. This happen to my many time. Why can the room signs place before the room? I believe with a little through, we can design product that fit the user nature behavior.

What other real life story which you have encountered some of these usability issues? Next time we design something think about who will use it.

Project meeting management tool help schedule meeting

For the past two week, we have the opportunities to work with others to finish some team project in class.

Somehow, I had the privilege to help organize group meeting.

So purposely, I picked two of the online meeting scheduling tools Doodle and Tungle to help schedule different group meeting.

Doodle Screenshot


1.  Meeting schedule is simple, don’t require to create a account.

2. Easy manageable admin page, allow use to editor event quickly.

3. Automatic Email notification when different people sign up a time.

4. Users can access the event with a link.


1. Users beside the admin are not allowed to propose a new time.

2. No Calendar view when creating a new events, it is only for viewing the event.

Tungle screenshot


1. Interactive one click new time slot adding new events in calendar view.

2. All participants are allowed to propose a new time

3. Easy event reminder to admin and other participant if any participants didn’t reply.


1. Require participant to create a account or other social account login (google, twitter, facebook) for each participants.

2. User can not join the meeting without a invitation from admin.

The Doodle scheduling is ready to use, we have a easier time using it as a team, although non-admin participants, they can easy to common and admin can add a time slot from the request. Doodle is great for simple event meeting schedule even you don’t know the number of participants. In the other hand, Tungle offer more features,  but it is better to use it in company environment for more security and contact searches. Personally, doodle is much more use-centered and friendly to use.

Go try them out yourself, please let me know if uses other meeting manage application, and compare them.

Choose the Right WordPress Theme, Cool vs. User-centered Design. gives you hundred of the themes you can choose from.

I have spend a long time to pick a theme for my blog. Finally I have choose the theme Triton Lite because of its uniqueness.

But later on, I run into many usability issues myself,

1. the post display area violate the rule of proximity, it is very hard to identify which information is belong to which post, especially some post have photo and some post don’t.

2. The order of post is not very clear, should reader read from left to right or top to button first?


3. It takes too much of reader’s effort to scroll down and get to the sidebar area. At first it take me a long time to find the sidebar in the button.

It is our job to help every readers to create a better experience, and to keep their interest.

Thank you for the theme Fresh & Clean, the usability principles above has well utilize in this theme.

Choose the theme wisely, cool don’t mean user-centered.