The Usability Chronicles

"The Bar Game " : Usability Violations

  1. Game has no name. Sites should use memorable names so that users know where they are.
  2. None of the screens have titles. It is important to have titles so that users will know what is in the window when they see it minimized.
  3. There are no instructions. The user does not know the object of the game. Users will not stay interested in a site if they have no motivation for continuing to explore it.
  4. The user is boxed into a role he or she may not want to play. In the absence of instructions, users assume that they are to answer truthfully as themselves, and in this game they are forced to do things of which they may disapprove.
  5. The premise of the game may be offensive to some users. It is important not to turn off a segment of your potential audience. The goal of your web site is to attract and engage as many visitors as possible.
  6. While this game appears to follow the minimalist recommendations of usability experts, it does so at the expense of artistic invention that might improve the user experience. As with any set of guidelines, it is important to know when to bend or break the rules.