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We love to hate Clippy — but what if Clippy was right?

We love to hate Clippy — but what if Clippy was right?

How Clippy shaped the design world.Personalise your ClippyWe met in my primary school library. I didn’t really invite you to look over my shoulder, but I didn’t mind it either. I was a nine-year-old starting a school newspaper with my friends. We would sell a paper for $2 a pop and be rich enough to feast on sausage rolls and meat pies from the tuckshop.You asked if I needed help, showed me some templates, and then just hung about, wiggling every now and then. I was glad for the company, being a writer can be a terrifying, lonely thing.I fell in love with Clippy (the artist formerly known as Clippit). As I would stare at the blinking cursor and start tapping away on the keyboard, there was a sigh from my soul when Clippy recognised what I was trying to do. Yes, I am writing a letter, how did you know? Yes! I am a writer of letters! My lunchtime labours of love in the library would slowly ripen with Clippy keeping me company.Clippy was the first computer software that recognised my intent and helped me, and I’ve been chasing that feeling ever since.There were so many design patterns that came from Clippy, so many genius moves. Take the help out of the docs and into people’s hands when they need it. Create the first-time use. Show templates. Allow users to re-skin and customise their assistant. Throw a recognisable face on a tooltip.Let’s take one of these: I’ll expand on the genius move of putting a face onto a computer feature. The Stanford social psychologists that informed the decisions around Clippy recognised that humans respond to computers as if it was a human, so hey, let’s play with putting a face on a software tool. Babies prioritise faces when they are focusing their eyes for the first time and this continues as we age. Some smart people at University of Sydney coined this facial pareidolia. We’ll see a face in everything; a cloud, a rock crevice, a paper clip with stoner eyes.Society often makes fun of the person that comes up with a new theory. Aristarchus (It seems Aristarchus joined the first name club; like Lady Gaga and Cher) believed the sun was the centre of the solar system in 300BCE but was told that the maths don’t add up. Charles Darwin sat on his theory of natural selection for eight years because he knew that haters were gonna hate it. Ignaz Semmelweis was dismissed by the medical industry when he suggested the novel idea that doctors wash their hands in between handling cadavers and assisting women giving birth.Clippy was a new theory. It was the idea that a piece of computer software could be as useful as a human coach. The late 1990s was a time when 15% or less of households had a computer, software used to come with printed manuals and during usability testing of Microsoft Office, people were too scared to move the mouse.“What a lot of people don’t understand is, in the ’90s, the majority of people had not touched a computer,” says Karen Fries in an article by Seattle Met “They didn’t know how a menu worked.”Clippy was designed for first-time use and would interrupt you in order to be helpful, repeatedly.Honestly, we still haven’t nailed this human/computer interaction in 2022.  » Read More

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The term "web design" describes the layout of websites that are seen online. Instead of software development, it typically refers to the user experience components of website development. The primary focus of web design used to be creating websites for desktop browsers, but from the middle of the 2010s, designing for mobile and tablet browsers has gained significance.

What is a webdesigner?

A web designer is responsible for a website's look, feel, and occasionally even content. For instance, appearance refers to the colors, text, and images utilized. Information's organization and categorization are referred to as its layout. An effective web design is user-friendly, aesthetically pleasing, and appropriate for the target audience and brand of the website. Many websites focus on keeping things simple so that viewers won't be distracted or confused by additional information and functionality. Removing as many potential sources of user annoyance as possible is a crucial factor to take into account because the foundation of a web designer's output is a site that gains and nurtures the trust of the target audience.

Responsive and adaptive design are two of the most popular techniques for creating websites that function well on both desktop and mobile devices. In adaptive design, the website content is fixed in layout sizes that correspond to typical screen sizes, while in responsive design, information moves dynamically based on screen size. A layout that is as consistent as possible across devices is essential to preserving user engagement and trust. Designers must be cautious when giving up control of how their work will appear because responsive design can be challenging in this area. While they might need to diversify their skill set if they are also in charge of the content, they will benefit from having complete control over the final output.

What does a web design worker do?

A web designer is a member of the IT industry who is in charge of planning a website's structure, aesthetic appeal, and usability.

A skilled site designer must possess both technical know-how and creative graphic design abilities. They must be able to envision how a website will seem (its graphical design) and how it will operate (conversion of a design into a working website).

The terms web developer and designer are frequently used interchangeably but erroneously. In order to construct more complex interactions on a website, such as the integration with a database system, a web developer is frequently more likely to be a software developer who works with programming languages.