Wednesday, October 10, 2012


So now my boss's system is working as he wants it to, more or less.

Jonathan Arnold e-mailed me yesterday and said, "Have you switched the video input?" Basic. That would be the first thing to do, all right, except there are no obvious controls on the monitor for anything except the power button. Because of that, I assumed there was some kind of auto-switching feature. I was wrong.

There are times when design is so clever that it actually obfuscates, and that's what happened here.  In the bottom-right corner of the monitor, where you would expect control buttons to be, there seems to be nothing there. However, if you run your finger along the edge, three little lights appear, and if you press them, you get a few basic monitor controls, including input switching.

I could have looked at that monitor for six months and never realized where those controls were, because when they're not lit up, they're invisible. And the documentation was so crappy that it was no help, either.

When design hides itself, it's confusing.

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