i had tough time filling a online form. Here are some points, many know already, but new ones need to be instructed again. Especially so in customer service online forms or apps.
Make all the fill up text boxes ample, not cramped. Message area needs to be wide and long. Not an excuse of a square, where you can only say "Hello". Do not insist on all details an Email is enough.
If the form has validation or capthca, may it have memory. The user need not fill everything all over again for one error. Make validation intelligent and after three submits, take what customer gives, even if it appears to be a riddle.
Most of us, even me when i made/sold products, do not like the "Return". This is not healthy, Customer support must be proactive, enthusiastic and like some say Fanatic. A brand survives and sells itself only on Genuine Customer Support. Just communication or Half-Hearted attention will not work for very long.
I once worked in Tek for a very short period. I got to experience the 2235 and 2465 analog scopes and their controls. The 2465 was a 400 MHz Digitally Controlled Analog Scope.
I also used the Plugin System Scopes and Calibration systems; these were Tek Culture and Tech contribution to the Instrumentation world, it probably evolved into VXI-PXI as uC systems took over.
I also had a chance to look at DSO/Logic Analyzers and the just developed TDS Series. The older tek analog scopes made me understand about usability and panel layouts. Many controls are inevitable in a Analog Scope with Electromechanical Interface.
In a Digital World that can be largely changed using the Monitor and Trackballs. The older BlackBerry phones are also good study for usability before Touch Screens came.
Date Time Clock Widgets
When i found the Remote controls and the early mobile phones difficult to use. I felt i have to try to design user interface within a small footprint. This helped me innovate a Active or Dynamic GUI concept; as shown in the Ability to change the skins of the Audio Music player and Digital Alarm Clock. The metronome too see the other project in this profile. These were done around 2005-6-7. Both for elements on my site and gadgets.
Digital Alarm Clock Gadget - I also made a Virtual Web Gadget Alarm Clock Simulation that will demonstrate a Dynamic GUI in a Limited Facia Area.
Reduce the number of operations a user would do at achieve a purpose. Auto, Intuitive, Context Gui. When a Customer comes to buy Trousers, Take him to the Trouser Corner. Do not show Tuxedo option. The colors have good contrast and the text clearly visible.
A Highlighted reaction to user action. Tactile. Dynamic GUI, see in Gadgets above. GUI Elements appear only for that sequence of actions. No clutter. Menus if used, should not get stuck. Should not be fidgety, should not be menus at all if possible.
Early Innovations on Landline Phones were Answering Machine, Music-on-Hold and Fax Machines. Later landmines were used for BBS and then DUN (Dial up Networking) Internet. Then came the Big Freeze.
My first data experience before the internet was Delrina WinFax. It helped one of my friends get a job in Europe too. A fax machine was expensive, a Gateway 2000 modem was not. (this modem took me first online at home)
Cable Internet, Broadband Internet and 3G etc. have pushed the Landline phone in a corner.
I am using Internet on my Landline and it is pretty good. This may not be affordable by all, as a PC or Laptop is needed and the extra Broadband charges. This is just using the same line. My LandLine phone still is UnEvolved.
What i am trying to say is .....Add SMS at least for all Landlines with no extra monthly cost other than the SMS cost. If Possible add a means of slow File Transfer like FAX. A USB port on this device below will do.
This will help many use Data on the Telephone lines without buying a PC or Fax machine. The SMS will be a Super Hit. Voice Mail can alo be done. No Internet required.
The most financially stressed families in the most remote locations can SMS and if possible send their JPG photo or resume over the Normal Phone Connection at only the extra cost of data transfer.
I got my a Landline a few days back, The phone was one with a LCD, It is a very nice phone with a large LCD, but i had trouble using the phone book, as i kept forgetting the sequence.
These Landline phones occupy a prominent position on the desktops of all offices. The CEO, Marketing Manager and Purchasing Officer; or even at the Canteen, we see these phones. The potential for marketing and advertising is good in these, as they are still popular in the office environment. A firm can show its flash presentation or a product catalog, when a customer waits for the despatch details of a product he ordered.
A Landline Phone also may be interesting with a touch screen and built in web browser. This phone can also have the option of WiMax, in areas where it is available.
This was posted around 2007-8 in a Blog Nomadic Computing and later in delabs Design Devices.
Description of Gadget - This can be used to preset Five Alarms with a small text memo, The Alarm will remind after set time elapses with musical sounds. It also shows the Time and date. The Alarms once set, repeat every day.
When the user visits the page containing this gadget, it reminds him of
the missed memos for the past three hours. Web Gadget for Google
Homepage or Website. A study of the Alarm Clock Instructions Video may
help understand points below.
Controls and Display
A - Buttons
Select Alarm - Click this to start the setting of the Alarm Clock, The button lights up green and remains lit for two minutes, this is the set mode (Figure-2). This button will scroll the Alarm Number on the left of this button from 1-5 as you click repeatedly. Select the Alarm you want to set. After two minutes the setting mode ends automatically and the changes you made are saved. You can continue setting or modifying the alarms by clicking this button again.
Select Digit - Once an Alarm Number is selected, set the Alarm Timefor that, Click this button to Select a Digit you want to set, A Grey Arrow (Figure-2) will appear on the top of the digits, it will move left till the end and then move right as you click more.
Scroll Value - Now that the Grey Arrow is above a particular Digit or the AM-PM indicator in Alarm Time, Click this button to Increment or change the value. Now repeat this for every Digit and the AM-PM, for setting the Alarm Time you want. Do this by using the Select Digit and Scroll Value Buttons as explained.
Save Memo - This Save button and Enter Memo in Figure-2 come to view only when you are setting the alarm, Key the text into Enter Memo box and press the Save Memo button. When the Alarm goes off on a later visit to the page (within 3hrs of set time) or on the Desktop at exactly the alarm time. The memo and time will remind you the task.
Enter Memo - When alarm is being set, this Text Edit Box Appears along with the a Save Memo button, Enter a short memo of Task to remind on Alarm.This is a memo to remind you what this alarm is for, like "Go to the Market".
Music - This comes up, as soon as you have saved the Memo (Figure 3), there are 10 short tunes, 0-9, which can be played and chosen by pressing the button beside the tune number.
Ok Done - This button is pressed to stop the Alarm sound after you see the message or Hear the sound, it will not sound again on that day. But if you make any new settings the Alarms within the last three hours will sound again. This happen in Normal run mode.
B - Outputs
Time Display - This shows the time, the hours and minutes as per your computer clock, The AM-PM indication too.
Alarm Time - This displays the Alarm Time that is being set with four small orange digits and a small yellow AM-PM display. In the Run mode it comes up, when alarm sounds.
Alarm Number - This shows the Alarm number Being Set, When an alarm sounds this will show the alarm that is playing.
Seconds - This is the seconds display of the Actual time on your Computer,
Memo - This Show the Task or To-Do that the alarm was set for, like "Visit Dentist" , this will show with the Alarm Time and Alarm Number.
Sound - The Music or Sound set, will be played when Alarm turns on at the set Alarm Time.
After Starting up, The Alarm Clock Time Display shows the time Hours, Minutes and the Seconds display the seconds. (Figure-4). The Set Mode is not active. A Text display show the Day, Weekday, Month and Year.
The Week Number of the year also is shown. If the Alarm was set and cookies enabled in your browser, the Alarm sounds at the set time, even if you visit the Homepage within three hours of the set time, the Alarm sounds. If an alarm has been set at 1.00 PM and you visit the HomePage at 2.00PM it will Sound. Alarms cannot be deleted, if you do not want an alarm set it for sometime in the Night when you have the computer off. New settings overwrite old.
If Sound is enabled in your system, with System Volume and External Volume Controls at Medium and the browser plugin for your browser set correctly, the alarm music sounds will be Audible. The computer Clock should be set correctly and the Small Battery in the Computer must be replaced when this clock stops. This is a Hardware requirement and is not a problem most computers.
Computer's clock can be set accurate using an atomic clock server. All Alarm and note settings are lost when cookies are deleted from your browser, the settings you made are on your own computer browser. Cookies Issue - This gadget uses 18 Cookies nearing the Limit of 20 per Domain for IE and others also have limits.
If the gadget says "On Cookies", for Firefox go to Tools->Options->Privacy, Check Mark the "Keep until they Expire" In Internet Explorer Tools;Internet Options-;Privacy, set it to "Accept all Cookies" or "Low"
The three hours of alarm remind duration works oddly at the 12.00AM and 12.00PM vicinity, i am setting this right later. That means if you set the Alarm for Night 10.00 PM or 11.00 PM it will sound when you visit the page at 12.10 Noon.
The Cookies 18 will be brought down to Five or less in my next improvement, this way it will not use much Cookie space which is sparse.
The next update will take time, it may not be visible to you, you may not need to make any changes or upgrade, it will happen in the background.
Suggestion - Get rid of the number "shadows" in the background of the clock. Put in colored skins, colored lettering [red, lavender, green, orange, purple], colored borders, background, etc. for us to adjust the clock. Allow us to CHOOSE these elements of design for our desktop. -- EA -US
Complaint - The alarm clock is keeping correct time, but it doesn't sound off an alarm after being set. Do you have a tutorial for users? - COG - US
Answer - Enable cookies, read this page cookies enabled. If you still have problems i suggest you use the Firefox Browser.
Question - How do i delete an alarm? - AP
Answer - Just set a new alarm in its place, it will overwrite. In case you dont want to use an alarm, out of the five available, set it to 00.00 PM or any time at night. The set mode turns off after 3 minutes automatically, just press select again to start setting.
Suggestion - Thanks, I'm checking out your alarm., why don't you post the User Manual address and the youtube video example in the description of your gadget? You will get a lot more users if you do. I will tell you how it works for me. - AL