Good overview of the available user interface patterns,
This review is from: Designing Interfaces (Paperback)
This book is definitely a must-buy when you're doing anything related to designing interfaces for software. Why? Because it contains a thoroughly researched and very complete list of about all of the design patterns for interfaces that you will need at this moment.
In Designing Interfaces Tidwell describes everything that is necessary for designing an interface. She starts with the canvas, tells what lay-out is and then moves on to the numerous elements that make up an interface, such as how to get input from a user, how to present (complex) data, how to present lists, et cetera.
Each of the interface patterns is illustrated by a few example color screenshots and a set of answers to the following questions:
- What is it?
- When to use it?
- Why use it?
- How to use it?
This is not a book you read once and then put on a bookshelf. It is a book you flip through once, to take in the complete picture of the available interface design patterns. Then, whenever you have to design a interface (which comes around about every few weeks in my work as a SharePoint administrator and designer), you pick up the book once again to check if you're making the best decisions with regards to the data you have to present or the user input you need.
I did not give this book a 5 star rating, because although the book is comprehensive and clear, it lacks innovative user interface ideas. It describes what is current, but it does not lead the way towards new design patterns.
However, if you're not looking for something new, this book containing a good overview of the available user interface patterns is for definitely for you!