Human interface guidelines (HIG) are software development documents that offer application developers a set of recommendations. Their aim is to improve the experience for users by making application interfaces more consistent and hence more intuitive and learnable.
- Real World, Vision
- Core usability goals, Use cases / User requirements, Task aggregation
- Personas, Scenarios, Usability criteria, Feature list
- Apply a menu bar to every standard application.
- Provide a context menu for controls with implicit functions.
- Support keyboard access by accelerators and shortcuts.
- Use a group box to arrange associated controls.
- Use a panel for arrangement of controls without a caption.
- Allow users to resize aligned groups by placing a splitter between the groups.
- Use a list view to show some items out of one category.
- Use a tree view to show items with a single, natural, hierarchical categorization.
- If you really need to create your own widget follow the guidelines for custom controls.
Editing and Manipulation
- Use radio buttons for 1 selection out of a few items.
- Use one or more check boxes for clear options or to select items out of a small number of options.
- Use a drop-down list for selection of 1 out of a small number of items.
- Use a combo box to select 1 out of a small number of items where users should be able to add items.
- Use a list view to select 1 singular item out of a potentially big list.
- Apply the dual list pattern for several selections out of a large number of (multiple) items.
- Provide a line edit to enter one line of text.
- Provide a text edit to enter multiple lines of texts.
- Consider to provide inline editing with complex views.
- Use a spin box for numerical input within a range and with fix steps.
- Use a slider for arbitrary changes within a defined range.
- Apply the slider and spin box pattern for numeric input with both large changes and precise control.
- Use date and time pickers for formatted input of datum, time of day, or periods etc.
- Provide tool-tips for user driven information.
System triggered notification
- Provide a message panel to inform users about non-critical problems.
- Use a notification as system-triggered message to acknowledge about events out of the current context.
- Show a progress indicator for lengthy actions.
- Show a modal message dialog if the processing has reached an unexpected condition that needs interaction.
- Support the user by an elaborated interface or per help system.
- Default and minimal size
- Carefully place control according the KDE alignment style.
- Do not use color as primary method of communication.
- Language localizations
- Static text
- Control Labels
- Contractions (don't, there's, etc.)
- Exclamation Points
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