SeasonOfUsabilityWeek1Notes

Week of June 8, 2009

Notes on major goals for October 2009:

*Initial notes, there is overlap with the main AppCenter doc

Include in Ubuntu 9.10 a simple and fun interface for finding, installing, and removing software.

  1. Initial separation of discovery and management functions, as discussed (into unified tabbed interface?).
    1. Testing of naming schemes (e.g. App finder, store, my history, etc) see how it does with novice users. Interleaving functions as it is now adds complexity and some trivial usability issues (with checkboxes, etc).
  2. Eradicate jargon & associate the process with “real life” activity

    1. No “packages”, even “canonical” is confusing
    2. Need a way of representing different repositories in a way that makes sense to novices. What is important from their perspective? That it is recommended by other people, that it can perform a special function, stable enough to be relatively bug-free? Is there a way of representing these concepts in a composite rating? Does a novice user even care about this or understand its relevance? Or is there an “install first, ask questions later” attitude?
    3. Align language and representation with activities: categories might be more oriented towards use, work v. fun, pictures, music,, etc. Collections of software oriented towards use (e.g. common graphics packages) and shared in the same way. This would be useful to surface during the install wizard process as well.
  3. For discovery:
    1. Featured, random or recommended, top 20 or most popular (not just made up of the default apps)
    2. Lots of mention of screenshots and previews – is there currently a source for this data or must developers provide it with the package?
    3. Transparent “rating”: is there data to use here in the short-term that is a better measure of actual popularity and not skewed towards default apps?
    4. Think about how a discovery design framework might extend to other desktop interactions for consistency (printer drivers were mentioned, other things with less choice like wireless networks, etc)
  4. For management:
    1. when did I install that? Timeline idea, test some more visual ways of presenting this data. This could potentially allow for a “roll back” to previous versions of the system and a future integration with a backup mechanism (not sure what exists now). Also, could “share” collection of packages with community (as mentioned in brainstorm).
    2. When did I use this? This is a useful feature, if it actually works (unlike in windows!) can be integrated into timeline.
    3. Why did I install this? This has potential of being annoying but might be an interesting way of capturing more data. Ie – simple way of marking I am installing this for work, school, fun, dependency, etc. adds another potential dimension for exploration and sharing.
    4. what else is like what I have? (link to similar)
  5. Same means of accessing add/remove through the menu? A default desktop icon might highlight use for new users.
  6. For installation:
    1. Need to increase transparency during install process, as mentioned. For example, in apple there is a clear, visual link between the installation and where it “lands” (dragged directly to target directory by users)

Establish a system within Launchpad for registered users to suggest a better description, category, keywords, and/or screenshot for a software package, and for the package maintainer to incorporate those changes into a new version of the package, so that end users can find the software more easily later.

  1. Is this just a matter of establishing and recommending standards for metadata and tags? Or is there extensive development required?

SeasonOfUsabilityWeek1Notes (last edited 2009-06-16 15:13:39 by mgm36)