Jimmy Breck-McKye

Developing opinions

Character count design: some guidelines

This post was rescued from my old UX blog

Character limits are ubiquitous on the web, not least in applications that rely on user-generated content. Yet for something so common, character limits are often poorly implemented. Thankfully, by following six simple guidelines about designing length-limited fields and displaying character counters, you can make writing character-restricted text and smooth and painless as possible.

Designing in-context editors

This post was rescued from my old UX blog

In-context (or ‘in-place’) editors allow users to edit content in the same page or space that they view it, rather than using a separate form or administration area. They establish a strong relationship between content and the tools used to manage it, which makes those tools extremely discoverable, and gives users confidence about the consequences of their activity. However, in-place editors can also pose certain design challenges. I take a look at these issues and offer some ideas on how to ameliorate them.

The problem with video help

This post was rescued from my old UX blog

Video guides have become enormously popular as a help strategy. They’re attractive to new users, they’re easy to create with today’s tools and they impart a real ‘wow’ factor. But like all tools, video help has its limitations, and needs to be employed carefully – because advanced and long-term users find them tremendously frustrating.