Monday, 13 August 2012

Usability heuristics

In class, we are learning about Nielsen's heuristics to do with using a device. My chosen device is an iPod Touch.

We have been given 5 steps to carry out.

1. Identifying common tasks.

My 5 common tasks are:

Turning the device on
Play "Tourniquet" by Knife Party
Changing the time
Taking a picture
Viewing that picture

2. Reorder the tasks into an order in which they may be carried out.

Turning on the device
Changing the time
Taking a picture
Viewing that picture
Play "Tourniquet" by Knife Party

3. Apply Nielson's heuristics as someone else carries out the task.

I took a series of screenshots for each step in the task of playing the song had been completed and one on the lock screen.

The usability of the iPod is really easy to use as it's all touch screen and has a really basic way of navigating the interface. This is done by accurately labeling each of the buttons on the screen that are used for navigation. It only required 2 taps (clicks) to find where the song was located and a third to play it.

4. Choose 2 problems to fix. (Explain how)

Help users recognize, diagnose, and recover from errors:

Some errors that occur on the iPod can cause it to freeze and doesn't make an error message appear detailing what went wrong. I would fix this by either fixing the bug which caused it to happen or by making a message box appear detailing what happened to cause the error and how to fix it.

Error prevention:

Relating to the above, it would be even better to not have the errors occur at all. So to fix this there would have to regular bug checks. These bug checks would lead to finding the bug which causes the error to occur and then lead to an updated version of the software.

5. Does your selection violate any other heuristics?

If the explanations on how to fix an error are quite long, it would violate the help and documentation heuristic. Otherwise, no.

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