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Chapter Six. Navigation and Other Aspect... > Intuitive and Natural Interfaces

6-1. Intuitive and Natural Interfaces

In every respect the burden is hard on those who attack an almost universal opinion. They must be very fortunate as well as unusually capable if they obtain a hearing at all.

John Stuart Mill, from “The Subjection of Women”

Many interface requirements specify that the resulting product be intuitive, or natural. However, there is no human faculty of intuition, as the word is ordinarily meant; that is, knowledge acquired without prior exposure to the concept, without having to go through a learning process, and without having to use rational thought. When an expert uses what we commonly call his intuition to make a judgment, with a speed and accuracy that most people would find beyond them, we find that he has based his judgment on his experience and knowledge. Often, experts have learned to use methods and techniques that nonexperts do not know. Task experts often use cues of which others are not aware or that they do not understand. Expertise, unlike intuition, is real.


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