Show Me What I’m Looking For


1.Visibility of System Status



The key behind this heuristic is that users of a product should be able to tell what the system is doing at a given time and how far along in the process they are. This progress bar for Domino’s Pizza makes sure that users are never in the dark about where their order is. I remember in the old days after calling in a pizza order, you would sit around not knowing if your pizza was coming or how much longer it would take until the delivery guy showed up. With this progress bar, users are constantly informed of the status of the order and what is going on at a given time.



This buffering screen that Youtube uses is not as user friendly as it could be and doesn’t follow the principle of having good visibility of the system’s status. The buffering circle could be there for an unknown amount of time, either a couple seconds or maybe minutes to hours. Nothing about this screen tells you how close you are to getting to watch your video. Many other interfaces have percentage notifications or bars which at least give you a sense of how buffered the video is at that location so a viewer can know if it is worth it to keep waiting or not. Any time that this sort of loading occurs, there should be an indicator on screen to keep users updated and informed.



Screen Shot 2016-03-04 at 11.07.45 AM

This simple change to display the percentage on the screen gives users a sense of the progress the video is making. Instead of being kept in the dark and staring at this spinning circle for an indefinite amount of time, viewers can know that their video is almost ready or if they should try and look for a different sort. This simple redesign makes the system conform with the “visibility of system status” because now people can tell what the system is doing through appropriate feedback.

About the author: evanzheng

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