Bashing Facebook seems to be a favorite pastime for many these days. From those bemoaning the visual refreshes or the privacy concerns or the supposed destruction that Facebook is wreaking on our relationships, Facebook negativity is in large supply.
The thing is, Facebook is not the problem. Facebook is a tool, and a wonderful tool at that – having such a communication platform available to everyone is a major feat.
I have an interest in usability. The downside, of course, with an interest in usability is frustration when using products that are not as usable as possible.
For example, at the UT Dallas dining hall, there are three holders for silverware on a table after you exit the food area and enter the dining area. Each holder is circular and has two levels of three “cups” each that hold silverware… they can rotate as well. So, if that doesn’t make sense, it’s like if you took six cups and attached them together in sets of threes and attached the two sets to a rod that rotated.
Anyway, they have it set up where for each level, there is a cup for each type of silverware – forks, spoons, and knives. The cups have a little sticker on them that is supposed to say what they contain, but is often incorrect. So each holder has a total of two cups of each type of silverware, then there are three holders. The individual levels can rotate, so you never know what type of silverware will be at a certain position.
A text representation would be something like this:
So, each time you go to get silverware, you have to hunt through the holders to find all your required silverware. As you can imagine, if more than two people try to get the silverware at the same time, it usually causes a “silverware-jam.”
So, I’ve seriously considered submitting a comment card suggesting that the silverware be allocated one type to one holder and large signs be placed in front of them indicating the type of silverware they hold:
That would eliminate the “hunting” part of the silverware-gathering experience as you could just grab one item from each holder rather than having to look through each one.
There’s a suggestion box in the dining hall. But… should I really submit a comment card about silverware usability? Interesting… But three times each day, I have the privilege of thinking about the usability (or lack thereof) of UTD’s system.
Hope that makes some sense! I’m really a nerd (or usability geek or something), I guess… Perhaps sometime I’ll write a post about the design of the dining hall walkways – not exactly ideal either.
Yacov is Jacob as the Russians say.
Yacov is webmaster so you better pay…
…Attention cus Yacov is comin this way.
Yacov is known for his photoshop,
He’ll turn your hair into a crazy mop.
I know Yacov is the man,
Cus I’m team Yacov and his biggest fan
~ Ryan Thomas
I purchased a new MacBook Pro this past week, so to test my image editing skills, I photoshopped an afro onto an image of two of my friends, Blake Shook and Mark Thomas. Ryan Thomas, Mark’s brother and another of my good friends, wrote this poem about me (Mark visited the Ukraine lately and thus has taken to calling me Yacov).