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Any one who has not seen this? Pretty rare, I believe.

This is Firefox showing the user that it is in offline mode. Now, I would think a thousand times before tagging some UI in a software such as Firefox as a blooper, but this one is worthy of it, in my opinion. I recently read a fantastic book on usability – Designing from both sides of the screen, and right into the first chapter of the book, an important point is made about ‘appreciating the user’s physical effort’ in using the software.

Look at this page shown by Firefox. What is the use of the ‘Try Again’ button if it is clicked without unchecking the ‘Working Offline’ menu item? Apparently, it does nothing, I found out by trial and error (another situation you want to avoid for the users of your software). I can’t seem to understand why I must ferry my mouse half way across the screen and click once to open the File menu, and click again to uncheck the ‘Work Offline’ item and ferry my mouse back to the center of the screen and then click on ‘Try Again’? Can’t the ‘Try Again’ button just be smart enough to do the unchecking of the menu item for me?

I don’t want to be overly critical in case I am missing some thing. Comments welcome.


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