SOMETIMES there is a huge disconnect between the people who make a product and the people who use it. The creator of a Web site may assume too much knowledge on the part of users, leading to confusion. Software designers may not anticipate user behavior that can unintentionally destroy an entire database. Manufacturers can make equipment that inadvertently increases the likelihood of repetitive stress injuries. | Enter the usability professional, whose work has recently developed into a solid career track, driven mostly by advancements in technology. —Barbara Whitaker —Technology’s Untanglers: They Make It Really Work (New York Times)
The techno bloggers sort of scoffed at this article when it first came out, since usability is a basic concept to people who work on the internet. Still, it’s a good thing that a reporter took the time to educate the general public.