Ministry of Propaganda

Ministry of Propaganda - 02/Jan/2004: "Too difficult to use?"

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Too difficult to use?

I assume there were quite a few digital cameras and other gadgets given as Christmas presents last week. I wonder how many of the recipients had similar thoughts to what Ruth Wishart writes: Forget the mumbo-jumbo...just let me take a picture. And how many gave up and banned the camera or gadget into a corner, never to be used again?

Even the smallest cameras now have more features than 98% of all people will ever need. Tens of modes, buttons, switches, options and other things to confuse both the new as well as the irregular user. Similar with mobile phones: Cameras, games, organisers, soon televisions (and if you're lucky you can even call someone with it...). Will this "featuritis" turn off users?

I'm wondering if there will be a backlash soon. Customers asking for things that just do the task they are supposed to do, not more. But do these tasks exceptionally well because they are not overburdened with too many features. Simple but efficient.

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