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140

If you're a programmer, you're already creative. Programming is one of the most creative of professions (else why would the word "elegant" be such a high term of praise?). So much for that. So let's narrow this down. You want a route to channel your already-existing creativity into the VISUAL arts, rather than the unseen-by-all art of good coding. Like ...


49

Some comments: The Go button size should be bigger and present the best contrast of all since it's the primary one. The Clear button is okay because it's a secondary action and it should be neutral. For me the Switch button has too much presence both in size and constrast. I'd position it between the Origin-Destination dropdowns, where it make more sense ...


25

My answer is partially related to your question, but what I feel is that I needed motivation to count myself and you need some also. Can you be creative? Absolutely! Use your imagination to change your beliefs; give time to your thoughts. When I was newbie in this field the same things were in my mind but as time passed I came to know that only I can ...


22

Yes, this question is incredibly broad. Maybe it's OK as a wiki article. For starters, you need to define 'we'. There are many, many people and roles involved with designing web sites and they all tend to have different common mistakes. Here are some issues I've seen that seem to pop-up over and over again: Failing to properly define the business' ...


22

Edit: Since you keep pushing :) I will answer directly: Is the style, creativity, & inspiration side of interface design not equally important compared to the content, efficiency, & productivity side of interface development? is it not important to focus on additional fancy style? I have a little problem with the question, as there are ...


15

Short answer: Form follows function. It's an age-old but often forgotten design principle: how things look or are shaped should follow what they are for. Function shouldn't be twisted or squeezed to fit a form. A user interface is for use and usability, so if you're making compromises on function (usability) in the name of form (aesthetics), you've got ...


14

No, those are all way too close. You're suffering from Red Shorts Syndrome. What does that mean? Well, let's say you watch a race, and the guy who won the race wore red shorts. If you want to win a race, do you go out and buy red shorts and assume that wearing them will make you win? No, you look at what the winner did to train himself so that he could win. ...


13

This isn't really a "graphic design" answer, but you may also want to see if you can change the text. In your examples, I don't think the art of the "install" button is particularly more button-like than your Outlook button. However, the text on it is a well-known verb so it is associated with performing an action. In the same vein, "Launch Outlook" may ...


12

I think your questions is not about how to be creative, but rather about how to be able to create visually appealing content. I know many graphic designers who are either good or talented, but are not creative (in the sense of being innovative and thinking out-of-the-box) at all. Now, from my experience, people who are able to produce visually appealing ...


11

Pixel fonts aren't terribly different from tiny print fonts when you get right down to it*. The one big exception is that you know what the medium will do with pixel fonts -- a very big advantage. There really isn't an ideal pixel grid, per se. Obviously a larger grid gives you more room to work. The smallest types I've seen work successfully are 7px ...


11

One solution is to visually separate your button by priority. You'd typically have primary button(s), secondary button(s) and sometimes tertiary button(s) and/or non-preferred action buttons. For Primary and Secondary, I usually suggest your preferred branding color (purely subjective) in two levels of contrast. High contrast for primary, slightly less ...


10

Do interfaces really need to “look good”? Nope. As you state, and prove, some very highly succesful websites that have horrific UIs succeed. Reddit is a great example. As is Craigslist. So no, you do not need a great looking UI to succeed. But a site better have some really amazing content to make it worth getting through a really bad UI. In other ...


9

To me, it sounds you lack self-confidence. You already master one difficult part: programming, and as Alan already said, programming is a creative job. My tip: keep it simple, learn basic rules about layout and find your own style. This book: The design of sites helped me a lot for the structure of my designs and this book: The idea book helped me for ...


8

Your question scope is a little broad, but let me try to explain how I got into interface design. I just started by working on personal web projects for years, and visiting sites that had tutorials on how to use Photoshop to create certain results, then I started doing a few projects for other people and employers and generally just kept on experimenting and ...


8

So you have a few options, usually. At the moment, your problem is that lines 1 and 2 look further apart than lines 2 and 3, even though they're not. It's an optical illusion created by the lack of descenders and ascenders between the first two, but not on the second two. The solutions fall into two basic categories: avoiding this situation all together, ...


7

The answer to this question only exists in the courtroom, and even then, it's a blurry grey line. That's the legal issue, at least. The moral/ethical part is highly subjective heavily dependent on way to many variables to have any meaningful generic answer. Finally, sometimes it makes complete sense to outright steal. Especially in UI design where ...


7

Adobe Lightroom (and many of Adobe's other apps) effectively use a dark color scheme: More screenshots: http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshoplightroom/


7

You should probably consider establishing upper and lower limits and making the area of concern flash (possibly a red or yellow background with a black line flashing back to the normal waveform) if values go above or below those limits. For example: ETCO2 values above or below baseline (35-45mmHg) HR below 60 (considered bradycardic) or above 120 ...


7

These types if Ui designs are commonly created using Adobe Illustrator and then brought into Adobe After Effects for creating the video portion of the elements making them appear "in use". I don't know that they have a particular term or designation in regards to a theme. They are in fact static short film clips and never truly functional UIs. Directors and ...


7

Never start with the tool. Learn the fundamentals of layout, color theory, UX (user experience) and HCI (human-computer interaction). When you understand how to manipulate the data to control the experience then you can create killer interfaces. Then find the tool that works for you. I do all my mock-ups in Illustrator. There is plenty of disagreement on ...


7

It all depends on the actual use; who uses it to what aim. There are a million alternatives, and what you must bear in mind is what data is ok to be approximately right and what parts need to be exactly right. You could call this the granularity of the data. How the data is fed is of course also a consideration. But mainly: what needs to be how detailed to ...


6

As more of a programmer than designer my self I find that it helps my creative process when I "design in the browser" instead of Photoshop. I usually start with HTML and CSS to get my basic layout down and use Photoshop if I need to create buttons or other graphical elements. This also speeds up the process and makes development much faster. When I use ...


6

The visual flow of an interface does matter, and here's why: Every interface screen should have a primary action or actions that are to be performed. The visual flow should naturally draw the eye to the primary action. The less distance the eye has to travel, the easier an interface is to comprehend and use. Studies (pdf) on form design bear this out as ...


6

If you can't think of any "etc..." then its possible you don't need any "etc..." in there. We seem to have an in built reaction to fill our graphics so they don't look empty. It takes guts to push out a design that looks simple (even if its not). Something i learnt at design school was to embrace negative-space/white-space/void and to resist the urge to ...


6

Newer versions of Adobe's design apps Microsoft Expression Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 (sort of, the default theme is dark / light mix but not black and grays). I'd also say to do a search for "dark colour scheme" web sites and look at the samples that are out there. The web sites are a lot less overkill than installing a big software package just to ...


6

This isn't a UX question, but assuming it's going to be moved to Graphic Design, I'll answer it so that my answer is moved with it. You can accomplish this in Photoshop CS4 (not sure about others), by selecting your layer, then going to edit > transform > perspective, and moving the boxes around until you get what you want. You can see in the bottom right ...


6

Lynda.com is the big hitter in the design world.


6

Think of the Tango (the dance). You learn the moves (components of the dance) in a set sequence. When you know them well, you can make up your own sequences and so create a unique dance of your own. In short, componentize. Learn the bits and pieces as others have done them. Things like color, typography, layouts, parallax scrolling, ajax effects, etc. Don't ...


5

for vertical dragging. Standard on mobiles so it should communicate well. Or for completely draggable.



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