Log 1b: Interfaces in Everyday Life.

As far as everday goes, one thing that’s always constant is eating. And sometimes just browsing the refrigerator to see what’s going on. Upon encountering the refrigerator in my dorm room, it’s interface could use some work.

This is my refrigerator. Sure it works, but how does it open?  Where are the handles?

This is my refrigerator. Sure it works, but how does it open? Where are the handles?

No handles? Does this refrigerator open? Of course it has to, but it’s visibility isn’t as strong as it could be. There’s no obvious choice, no real hint as to what side to pull.  The interface already fails in that the response from any user wouldn’t be immediate as it should be.

So. There are grooves on the side. This should allow me to open the fridge, right?

So. There are grooves on the side. This should allow me to open the fridge, right?

Not the most obvious solution for a door, but let’s try it anyway. The food is still in there.

Okay, what is this? It doesn't open!

Okay, what is this? It doesn't open!

So, the refrigerator doesn’t open no matter how hard you pull on those grooves? What do we do?

So... the opening is in that edge right next to the wall?

So... the opening is in that edge right next to the wall?

There we go!

There we go!

If you put for hand on the other side, there are grooves identical to the ones on the other side. Another feature that makes this design overly complicated. What are the affordances of having those grooves on the other side? They’re useless and only aid in confusion. However, even if those weren’t around, the handles  that do open up the refrigerator are put in the most inconvenient place: up against the wall, where they can’t be seen.

Without obvious visibility, the simple act of opening the refrigerator took a much longer tie than it would have if, for example, there were handles on the front. Overall, this is a failed interface.

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