Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Real world bad UI

In the last few weeks, I happened to notice some confusing signage in places I'm at on a regular basis and thought it might make for an amusing blog post. Just like bad UI in a software application, these bits of signage/labels made me stop for a second and scratch my head:

I have a spot on the top floor of a parking garage in downtown Columbus, and all ramps are one-way. Here's the sign showing my way out. I guess they thought an arrow pointing the way out wouldn't give me enough information, so this not-arrow gives me the much more informative message that this is the way to not go for people going the direction I'm not.

Sometimes after a long day, I still have to pause for a millisecond when I see this sign. And this sign is not meant for the other guy, as he would have to have already come up the ramp to see that he shouldn't have.

Here are the elevator buttons I was using daily at the office:

Naturally, to go down, you can see that I pushed the top button.

In their defense, we are on the top floor, so the only way is down. So it looks like they just tried to reuse the same button panel as was on the other floors, only they decided to only mark the exceptional up button as down without marking the down button appropriately. Hope noone forgets they're on the top floor.

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