Archive for July, 2011

Mental models – the price of “wait…what?”

Posted by in design, human behaviour, user experience on July 12, 2011 | 1 comment

Recently I was driving in France, and got a bit…lost. At the next village I pulled into the petrol station, walked up to the matronly woman at the counter, and asked to buy a road map. She stared at me blankly. I checked my phrasebook and tried again. “Non”, she said this time, waving her arm to encompass the whole shop, “pas de cartes ici”.

I left there shaking my head. No maps at a petrol station? The next petrol station was the same – “pas de cartes”. Clearly, my idea of what a petrol station should sell was different from the French model.

So what does this have to do with usability? Read more »

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