Sublime Text 2 is an extremely powerful text editor that is particularly well suited for programming and editing markup. It has in a very short time become my favourite programming tool. It comes with built-in support of a great number of programming languages and file formats, and an even bigger number of community supplied plugins and extensions. You can extend the functionality of Sublime Text 2 in many ways just by adding packages. In this and later posts I am going to share some of my favourite ways to improve the functionality of Sublime Text 2. It will not be just about listing my favourite packages (although that may come in a later post), but how you can make small, but useful improvements in other ways. This post contains the first tip.

Continue reading

Have you ever been presented with a UI that is just overwhelming with information and gives you the feeling that it is just not worth it to digest it all? Maybe you just initiated one specific action, but the UI that is displayed has just too much information to process, and why should you be forced to read it all just to complete what you are trying to do? I call this the tl;dr effect.

It is named after the abbreviation for “too long; didn’t read”, often used as reply to overly long forum posts to indicate that it is too wordy or drawn out that people don’t want to read it. The tl;dr effect is an anti-principle of user experience design. When an UI is filled with a lot of text or items and expects the user to care about everything, it may have the opposite result where the user is overwhelmed and just skips it all. The effect is that intentionally or unintentionally, possibly important information is drowned out by at lot of unimportant one.

Continue reading

I recently did a review of WPF data grid controls for the company I work for. The developers are struggling with some limitations and bugs in the grid control that we currently use and they wanted something better. So I went ahead and created two requirement lists, one with the UX requirements and one with the development requirements, and then started looking at the usual suspects: Telerik, DevExpress, Infragistics etc. In the middle of reading feature lists and testing demo examples I realized something important: I actually don’t like DataGrids.

Continue reading

That is always my first thought when I get a new idea. Because I want to start right away. I’ve got a fun new idea and cannot wait to get cracking. Never mind that I already have three other projects ongoing that is not done yet.

So this is my problem: I am not good at finishing things. It is always the next idea that is the most fun to work with. The previous project is well underway or almost finished, but the work has changed from fun to a chore because I have to finish it. The starting phase, the exploration, the discovery, the learning of new technology or methods is over. I know where it is going. I know what is left to do. It is just tying up the final bits and pieces, but the work has become boring. And of course I have gotten some great ideas for my next project.

Starting a new project is always the most fun, but even that can be difficult sometimes. I may be ready to start a new project, but have several different ideas and it is difficult to choose which one to start with. They are all real fun, and all may give me an opportunity to learn something new, so which should I pick? I may get so hung up on the problem of choice that I just decide to postpone the decision till the next day and start then instead. And then I open Twitter or reddit and get very distracted, or get some more new ideas…

This blog is my latest project, and with any success it should never be finished and therefore never get to the boring stage. At least that is my latest idea. But to achieve that I am going to write about whatever interests me at the moment. Mostly it is going to be about user experience design and coding as that is what I care most about, but related to my impatience of getting to the next idea, the topics I am passionate about may change often. So I am going to use this blog as a tool to satisfy my own impatience and hopefully along the way some of it may be of interest to others as well.