04.28.08

User Interface: Menus, Revisited

Posted in donts, User Interface at 10:34 pm by cygnil

A little less than a year ago I pointed to the atrocity of the FUNiGIRLS website’s menu and its exasperating refusal to perform the one main function of a menu: providing a clear, easy way to navigate through the rest of the site. It turns out Vincent Flanders of Web Pages that Suck (which we may have to look at, too) beat me to it by a year with an equally stunning example of horrible menu design: unlabeled, animated menus. On the one hand, the FUNiGIRLS site has inactive elements in its menu that look exactly the same as active ones. On the other hand, the Qualcomm menu’s unlabeled elements actually move around! I see that some even cross each other, trying their best to evade recollection and gleefully frustrating the user. Qualcomm gets bonus points for the fact that their menu looks like a poorly-designed Flash ad.

In their favor, both Qualcomm and FUNiGIRLS have fixed their navigation issues. This won’t stop the old sites from being used as negative examples, of course, but at least the design managers in each case finally came to their senses.

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