Friday, April 10, 2009

Social trails

Don Norman talks about how we in the real world use the actions of others to find our own way. He has used exampels such as seeing people waiting on the train means that the train has not arrived yet, or that a path through some grass being an indication of a need for a path there. Very interesting and insightful, but I can't help but wonder if maybe it applies less to software. I think that in software, at least ideally, we look at what people really do and then change the application to fit their workflow.

What I am really trying to understand is if it is better to build trails ofbither people into software, or if it makes more sense to just change the software.

There are probably cases for both approaches.

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