In the years since Jakob Nielsen's classic collection on interface consistency first appeared, much has changed, and much has stayed the same. On the one hand, there's been exponential growth in the opportunities for following or disregarding the principles of interface consistency-more computers, more applications, more users, and of course the vast expanse of the Web. On the other, there are the principles themselves, as persistent and as valuable as ever.
In these contributed chapters, you'll find details on many methods for seeking and enforcing consistency, along with bottom-line analyses of its benefits and some warnings about its possible dangers. Most of what you'll learn applies equally to hardware and software development, and all of it holds real benefits for both your organization and your users.
* Begins with a new preface by the collection's distinguished editor.
* Details a variety of methods for attaining interface consistency, including central control, user definitions, exemplary applications, shared code, and model analysis.
* Presents a cost-benefits analysis of organizational efforts to promote and achieve consistency.
* Examines and appraises the dimensions of consistency-consistency within an application, across a family of applications, and beyond.
* Makes the case for some unexpected benefits of interface consistency while helping you avoid the risks it can sometimes entail.
* Considers the consistency of interface elements other than screen design.
* Includes case studies of major corporations that have instituted programs to ensure the consistency of their products.