Skip

DONTCLICK.IT - Interface Experiment
July 8, 2005 4:15 PM   Subscribe

dontclick.it : what would you do if somebody stole your mouse button? Yes, it’s flash, and it’s annoying, but that’s the point.
posted by signal (32 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
I activated the buttons without trying.
That'd get annoying real fast, if the button loaded another page. And that annoying, choppy flash just convinced me that I don't have the time to wait for menus to rearrange themselves graphically to jive with my gesture.

I understand the need, however.

Doesn't Opera have this already?
and Crazy Browser?
posted by Busithoth at 4:21 PM on July 8, 2005


need? what need? I didn't even know what I wasn't supposed to be doing until I clicked just because it told me not to.

I've never once thought to myself "Man, I wish I didn't have to click on things."
posted by bigtimes at 4:30 PM on July 8, 2005


Haven't really seen or thought about this before. Think it has some fascinating stuff in it. A friend currently has pretty chronic RSI, which I suppose comes largely from clicks and wheels rather than the simple hand motion (habitual pen-use doesn't seem to bring these problems as frequently).

But I also think the reverse benefits towards web design are worth considering...
posted by klaatu at 4:30 PM on July 8, 2005


Interesting, but it would be more useful to see how this would work for applications other than the simplified web-browser they use for their demo. (For example, I suspect that cut'n'paste in a word-processor would be awkward without either a mouse button or falling back on obscure hotkeys.)

Note also that the only time they need keyboard input (their contact form) requires you to tab between fields, which works but isn't as elegant as the common click-to-focus approach.
posted by rjt at 4:37 PM on July 8, 2005


Uh, while switching between tabs in the browser I moved the mouse and apparently voted yes or no on something, but who knows what I voted or why because not clicking is an awesome revelation!
posted by Optimus Chyme at 4:39 PM on July 8, 2005


Erm. What? No. This is idiotic... Pointing and clicking are the subject-verb of visual interfaces. Without the click it's like walking around saying "the book" or "the pillow" instead of "read the book" or "fluff the pillow."
posted by chasing at 4:50 PM on July 8, 2005


Uh oh. We broke it.
posted by Specklet at 4:56 PM on July 8, 2005


It's not terribly brilliant to replace one intuitive, easy and short gesture (clicking) with one which is more complicated and less intuitive, and takes longer.
posted by clevershark at 5:00 PM on July 8, 2005


Pointing and clicking are the subject-verb of visual interfaces. Without the click it's like walking around saying "the book" or "the pillow" instead of "read the book" or "fluff the pillow."

Actually, the click is the noun, so it's more like walking around saying "read" or "fluff."
posted by kindall at 5:00 PM on July 8, 2005


Uh oh. We broke it.

IT WON'T BE MISSED.
posted by jimmy at 5:01 PM on July 8, 2005


Amazon should team up with these guys and introduce "No-click ordering".

Not really.
posted by clevershark at 5:03 PM on July 8, 2005


kindall wrote: Actually, the click is the noun, so it's more like walking around saying "read" or "fluff."

I'm not sure what you mean. If the desired action is "bring this window to the foreground", the mouse location indicates which window, and the click requests the action. So the usual analogy is that pointer = subject, click = verb.
posted by brevity at 5:14 PM on July 8, 2005


There are some places where this could be useful, in others in would be annoying. I do like the "click" example #2, where you make a circle around the button. However, I think this takes significantly longer (even with practice) than just clicking the button.

I didn't find the interface very annoying, it was easy to navigate through for the most part, although at one point I habitually clicked a link and got to their "you're not suppose to click" page - humorous site :P
posted by Sonic_Molson at 5:23 PM on July 8, 2005


"abstract idea...provide answers to questions which evolved during its conception..."If these people are serious, they're pretentious twits.

"moving the mouse between clicks mostly results in dead space/time, which could be filled..." This doesn't get rid of the moving of the mouse, just the clicking, which is instantaneous anyway. In any case the verbose writing indicates that this person has no respect for anyone's time. Plus an ugly color scheme. Bah.
posted by QuietDesperation at 5:26 PM on July 8, 2005


Wow, what a bunch of grumps you guys can be!

That site was interesting. It made me think of what would happen if that became some kind of widespread UI trend.

One thing's for sure, it pretty much does away with that whole 1-button vs. 2-button debate.

Thanks for the link :)
posted by redteam at 5:45 PM on July 8, 2005


FWIW: I feel that anybody who cares about UI design should find the link interesting, not as a positive proposal, but more as a what-if experiment that gets you thinking/talking about what the role of the button is, how some things could be “spatialized”, etc. Arguing whether or not this is a better interface seems besides the point.
The part where they record and play back other people’s first seconds is especially revealing.
posted by signal at 5:55 PM on July 8, 2005


redteam: It made me think of what would happen if that became some kind of widespread UI trend.

People would start wanting to kill UI designers?

When you think about it, clicking and double-clicking is about as intuitive as you can get in the current UI paradigm. Moving the mouse around is analogous to pointing with your finger. A single-click is analogous to reaching out an touching an object to indicate which one in a group you want. And double-clicking is a definite action, like a poke or a slap, saying "wake up, I want to play with you!"

(Kids: don't try that at home with your cat...)

Though it is an interesting exercise in design thought - I've done similar things myself - even if it does nothing more than reinforce the idea that the current pointing / clicking / double-clicking / dragging interface is simple and works well. In an Edison "well, there's another thing I know doesn't work" way.

But what would I know. I *prefer* the Apple 1-button mouse. Give me a 1-button mouse with a scroll wheel & I'd be a happy little vegemite...
posted by Pinback at 6:26 PM on July 8, 2005


A friend currently has pretty chronic RSI, which I suppose comes largely from clicks and wheels rather than the simple hand motion (habitual pen-use doesn't seem to bring these problems as frequently).

Yes, it's mostly because of those tricky tendons on the back of the hand that rub on so quickly in an action like clicking. I came close to an RSI in my wrist once, and I began to feel every little twitch of my first two fingers...

I *prefer* the Apple 1-button mouse.

Do you have a reason for this, or is it just a matter of taste? I find that control-clicking not only takes more time than right-clicking but is also disruptive to my typing in a lot of cases.

I think a no-click interface like this would be useful for people, like those mentioned above, suffering from something like carpal tunnel syndrome. It seems appropriate to me mostly as an alternate usage mode rather than an outright replacement of old paradigms, though.
posted by invitapriore at 7:03 PM on July 8, 2005


Good stuff, and interesting.

I wonder if, at some intermediary stage in computer-nural interfaces, we will be able to think a cursor around a screen, but the directive to click will be too difficult to separate from other random thoughts involving decisiveness. Clickless activation schemes may have their day yet.
posted by catachresoid at 7:44 PM on July 8, 2005


Neural, even.
posted by catachresoid at 7:45 PM on July 8, 2005


It seems like a neural interface would make it possible to even get rid of the notion of a cursor - rather, you think to activate a file or program and it happens.
posted by invitapriore at 7:47 PM on July 8, 2005


redteam writes "One thing's for sure, it pretty much does away with that whole 1-button vs. 2-button debate. "

Actually I thought that the simple realization that you could plug any USB mouse into a post-1998 Mac did away with that whole 1 vs. 2 button debate...
posted by clevershark at 8:08 PM on July 8, 2005


invitapriore writes "Yes, it's mostly because of those tricky tendons on the back of the hand that rub on so quickly in an action like clicking. I came close to an RSI in my wrist once, and I began to feel every little twitch of my first two fingers..."

That's where the one-button mouse actually helps. Instead of clicking with your fingers you can simply rock your hand forward slightly.
posted by clevershark at 8:10 PM on July 8, 2005


Klaatu- I have tendonitis in my right wrist from handwriting. I can use the computer for hours on end, but if I have to use a touch pad, or move the mouse in tight circles, the tendonitis acts up. That site hurt.

(I am a math major at college, so I think I write more by hand than almost anyone here.)
posted by Hactar at 8:46 PM on July 8, 2005


clevershark:

I agree, but look, they're still at it!
posted by redteam at 10:15 PM on July 8, 2005


The choppy interface is fabulous and everything, but since I have to be moving my clumsy hand around the damned page, I might as well be clicking the button too.

That is, since my hand is already limiting my web activities with a slowness, seems as if the only advantage to this tech is not having to click a mouse button. Immediately I thought of advances for folks without the ability to manipulate a mouse or trackpad with their hands. And if I'm having to move my hand to direct the pointer already, where's the advantage to it.
posted by rebirtha at 10:16 PM on July 8, 2005


I didn't get the hang of it instantly.

In fact I didn't get the hang of it at all. What does it do? How do I make it do that?

The fact that I have to click and drag on scroll bars just to make the whole page visible on my elderly 800x600 display made the whole idea rather pointless anyway.
posted by flabdablet at 10:41 PM on July 8, 2005


I really, really don't like this. I'm glad it's there though - UI research needs negative as well as positive results.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 3:25 AM on July 9, 2005


I loved it. Don't know what crawled up all your asses. Yeah, it's not an interface for everything. That's acknowledged in the site.

Browsing dontclick.it, I felt peaceful. I could just move around, give my fingers a rest...I'd love to see more experimentation here. This could prove especially useful when, 10 years down the road, we're designing interfaces closer to Minority Report's dream browser.
posted by NickDouglas at 3:31 PM on July 9, 2005


The first time I accidentally clicked and it made me wait for 10 seconds before going back to the page, I closed the Firefox tab. Oh, you guys think you're clever! Hah hah, I'm an asshole and I clicked my mouse! Well, it was only one click to close the window too :)
posted by antifuse at 3:48 PM on July 9, 2005


I would have spent more time at the site if the Flash hadn't been so slow and choppy. But, I guess that's beside the point.
posted by ddf at 5:51 PM on July 9, 2005


I'm not sure what you mean. If the desired action is "bring this window to the foreground", the mouse location indicates which window, and the click requests the action. So the usual analogy is that pointer = subject, click = verb.

The click says "this one," i.e., it points to the object you want to work on. What you do afterward (i.e. drag the icon to another window = copy action, select "Cut" from the menu means delete it and put it on the clipboard. The click is the noun, the motion afterward is the verb.
posted by kindall at 11:33 PM on July 13, 2005


« Older Showering could cause brain damage   |   Can't trust 'em, shouldn't hire 'em Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post