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Chapter 9. The Aesthetic Factor > Simplicity and Enrichment

Simplicity and Enrichment

Common performance measures often indicate that users perform tasks more efficiently on sites with simple designs than on those with enriched color-graphics, animation, and 3-D depictions. But when you ask the same users to compare the simple site with one that has features that go beyond the 2-D widget, they tend to rate the enriched one more favorably in some aspects of information interaction (Gonzalez, 1996). As graphics technologies become more elaborate, the opportunities for graphical representations on the Web have become more varied. With these varied opportunities, artists can produce an attractive site while at the same time respecting the need for simplicity.

In the previous section we saw how usability designers can have all the usability constraints without sacrificing the artist's aesthetic expression for sites where enjoyment is as important as function. It is also incumbent upon artists to be aware of how to create art without violating usability and human factor principles of design.


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