Monday, October 1, 2012

People don't believe computers are hard to use anymore

The world has changed. People previously used a piece of software, couldn't figure it out, and said "I'm just not good with computers." Now people use a piece of software, can't figure it out, and say "This is poorly designed."

The second answer, as it turns out, was the right answer all along. But decades of cultural training led to the general public to believe that 'computers' were hard. People still believe that, actually.

What's funny is that they don't call their tablet or smartphone a 'computer', but it is. They're just computers with a more human-natural interface.

The mass use of these natural interface computers (tablets and smartphones) has exposed the general public to usable software. The public knows that working software can be instinctive and intuitive. They no longer automatically assume that they are at fault when it's hard. They now correctly assume that it's the designer's fault.

This changes everything. People expect all software to be easy to use, from the ATM to their favorite website to their video game interfaces. Easy-to-use is no longer a luxury, it is a requirement.