UP Computer Science Interns' Blog

May 2, 2010

Elegance

The last part of the week was all about finishing up the design plans for the SET modules. We had a particularly hard time designing the part that dealt with results viewing. Cooking up a user interface can be quite challenging, even if the end results are cute little boxes on paper– or otherwise scribbled little doodles. However, I think we nailed the important aspects of it just this week, thanks to our enduring supervisors. We also finished our mock-up interface of the SET answering module, it is ready for presentation.

Planning UI would always have the user as a priority. It also entails finding the connections to the implementation of the interface, as well as the details involved in the project as a whole. For this, during design, I often wonder how much the computer has to do for the user. Sometimes plans can go on the verge of extravagance, fading out the necessary pieces into the background until they muddle with every other thing.

It’s always tempting to do everything for the user. But if I learned anything important at all this week, it is that users are there to use, not to sit idly by. Programs are there for them to interact with, to control. There should always be a strong amount of flexibility in a program, so that a user can make the most out of it. It is noble to always think of the users, and developers may perhaps, indulge them– but not to spoil them.

In the end, as I learned from my supervisors and my stay at the CRS, users will be happy with something simple and effective. Elegance should be present not only in code, but in the program as a whole. Before making any moves towards complexity, one must always ask if it is necessary.

Besides, it really kicks up development speed.

Sam

(Thanks to everyone at work for making my birthday a blast! ^_^)

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2 Comments

  1. (belated) happy birthday sam!

    Comment by paulheartsjesus — May 3, 2010 @ 4:25 pm

  2. belated thank you 😛

    Comment by redparfait — May 5, 2010 @ 8:39 pm


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