i'm going to bet most of you picked the one on the plate rather than the one on the road. why? because it looks better. you can't smell it, you can't taste it ... but you know based upon how each one looks which you're probably going to prefer. you can guess how each smells and how each tastes.
the fancy plated meal may not even be real food. it could be a plastic display piece that offers zero nutrition that tastes even worse than our unfortunate reptilian road crosser, but you'd still pick it based on the pictures.
i have the pleasure and honor of going around and presenting kde to people in various places and venues. however, every once in a while i end up coming across roadkill in our interfaces and that is really not a happy event.
tomorrow i'm presenting to a fairly interesting crowd of people here in calgary that includes a healthy helping of both public and private sector policy makers from around north america.
i'm speaking about online identity and the Free software desktop (the event is about online identity) so as part of the first bit of my presentation i wanted to show some of the neat bits of online integration we have in the desktop. i want to use this opportunity to not only speak about how we handle identity in the Free software world, but also throw in some "hey, look how cool kde is!" bits.
well, i have to say that i've never quite seen so much roadkill as there is in our online integration interfaces. one in particular was so amazingly bad that while i really, really, really wanted to show the functionality it provides there was no way in hell i was going to show that interface.
so i spent an hour or so today porting it to a .ui file and making it look less like the reptile above ... it still doesn't look like that yummy meal, but i think i at least achieved edible status.
what i'm trying to say here is that when you're developing something really cool spend some time thinking about the interface. quite honestly, few people will use it if it looks like roadkill even if tastes like fillet mignon. if you don't have any design sensibilities please find someone who does.
as someone who goes to bat in front of the public for our project it would really help limit the embarrassing moments for me. as software developers it will get you a lot more users.