Man and Machine: Interaction
Being a robot engineer , I often wondered about the interaction of humans and robots, at least at the software level. Speaking about web technologies and the Internet, one should not forget that when you create a site, you lose contact with the person. You do not talk on the phone, do not meet live. All information is provided in text, or at best, in pictures and videos.
After reading several articles on UX Booth, I was surprised how bourgeois still succeeds in making visitors to their sites (and not only) feel a certain human factor. My favorite was Tom Anderson of the MySpace team.
MySpace and Tom Anderson
Take the largest American social network MySpace . Try to create a new profile there - you will see that a certain Tom Anderson - one of the founders of MySpace ( immediately not to be confused with Mr. Andersen from the Matrix;) will immediately appear in the list of your friends . That is, instead of showing you a bunch of FAQs, manuals and other blizzards, MySpace assigns you a "companion" to whom you can turn at any time. It’s like in foreign educational institutions, beginners are assigned a student who, completely voluntarily, gives you a tour of the institution and helps to join the team.
Yes, Tom’s profile has the same bunch of rules, frequently asked questions and answers, which are more common to see on other networks. At the same time, you can write to Tom only by reading these rules, but that is not the point. We all know that Tom is just some kind of artificially created image, and that its activity is created by the moderators of the MySpace resource, but think about a person far from Internet technologies. After all, he is quite pleased that at least someone took care of him, and that he is not alone, even if it is only on a subconscious level. Believe me, this kind of presentation of information turns new visitors into regular ones.
Flickr welcomes in different languages
One can not help but mention the web 2.0 resource Flickr - the most popular photo album (or photo blog) in the world. Yes, it was because of Flickr that people stopped posting photos on their profiles on Facebook and MySpace. The usability on Flickr is much better than the two giants combined. Photos can be uploaded from a bunch of different places - applications on Windows, Linux, Mac, via E-mail, from a cell phone via WAP, and much more (believe me, much!) Is different. And you can edit photos right there, on the fly. Raisins in their huge, yet simple API (more info : Flickr API ).
So, enough advertising - closer to the point. Having logged in to your profile on Flickr, you are always greeted by some kind of incognito, and each time in a different language. When working in a profile, and generally throughout the resource, often appear tooltips in various areas of the page that give very valuable advice (you can turn them off if you wish). The point is that Flickr is not forced to read tons of manuals in order to find out all the secrets (and there are three tons of secrets). With the help of these very tips, you will gradually learn Flickr, closer and closer, and as soon as it seems to you that you already know everything, you will be introduced to new sweets that do not stop appearing. Resource trends are very high, especially for 2009. No wonder Yahoo bought it .
Facebook - happy birthday!
There is not much to say. The good news is that when you enter your Facebook profile on your birthday, Facebook wishes you a happy birthday. Primitive? But it works! If I'm not mistaken, then the Russian resource Mail.ru does the same, though with some kind of moronic postcard, if my memory serves me right ...
Pandora - two stones with one bird
Pandora is one of the largest radio stations on the Internet. After listening to the radio for a long time (about 2-3 hours), Pandora trails off and asks you a question - “Are you still listening? After all, we pay for each song we lose, so we try not to play an empty room. ” Thus, they let you know, the feeling that this is some kind of "living" creature, and not a stupid receiver. And they really save money! Two stones with one bird - a veil! :)) On the other hand, Last.fm radio plays for days ...
By the way, Pandora does not work for Russian IP addresses - something with licensing. You can leave your mailbox on their website - they promise to send a letter as soon as they solve all the problems.
There are a lot of similar examples on the net. I really liked the decision of Pepsi - DJ Vision (unfortunately the site is not the same as it was before). A video appeared on the screen, with a real person (your future mentor), who spoke a few introductory words, and accompanied him with wishes to the room. Entering the room, you get up to the DJ console and start playing. This same person, from time to time, appears in various areas of the screen and tells you what to do next - you no longer feel like a newcomer DJ thrown into the public.
In the Russian-language Internet, I observed only units of resources that are trying to apply a similar technique. I hope that this will change in the near future;)
If you still have similar examples on your mind, please comment.
PS I could not decide where to publish - UI or web development. Sorry if I made the wrong decision :)