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222
3.9 out of 5 stars
Designing Web Usability
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Showing 21-25 of 25 reviews(1 star)show all reviews
on May 5, 2000
Three points to illustrate why you should not buy this book:
1) Jakob Nielsen does not understand frames. Plain and simple. Few people do. Frames are not the answer to everything, or even to most things, but they are an incredibly useful addition to the web designer's arsenal if used well. It is easy to use frames poorly. Hard to use does NOT equal bad.
2) Jakob Nielsen's opinions are held WAY too strongly for him to be even the remotest bit convincing as a guru. Gurus are about helping you to find yourself. Jakob just shouts at you and hopes you'll find him by the noise.
3) In amongst all the b.s. statistics, it would have been nice to see some nuts and bolts. If you want useful, buy some other book.
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on April 17, 2000
Writers often manipulate science to sell articles or books. This book is full of "Truths" that are completely unsubstantiated. Only a bit into the book, the whole cloth pronouncements on what "they" (the user) want and find useful come fast and furious. Where are the references? Even an anecdote? Nielsen left out any research to hide complicated conclusions.
Nielsen is considered by many in the business to be an expert on web usability, but the book has exchanged any good science for gushing cliches and maxims. Simply no credibility, unusable by mature professionals. Perhaps the book is meant for hobbyists? I did not get that impression from the presentation.
This book is written to make money, not to get at the truth. This book is about Nielsen, not web usability.
I suppose the scientific shortcuts work well for the publisher, but this is not a serious effort.
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on March 24, 2000
The problem with a 'common sense' approach to usability is twofold:
1)The design suggestions are solely the author's subjective opinions and have little empirical data to back them up.
2)The suggestions that are well established enough to indeed be 'common sense' are common knowledge as well. It's not really news to anyone that a Web page should be visually simple, rather than visually complex.
In short, if you have any background in the field at all, you'll mistrust many of the guidelines and already know the rest.
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on February 10, 2000
A good-looking book with lots of illustrations and nice layout concept. Good, commonsense information about what makes a Web page/site easy and pleasant for the user. However, I was really distressed to find glaring proofreading-type errors---given the price of this book, I don't expect captions to be cut off in the middle and important words to be left out of sentences. Mr. Nielsen needs to find a publisher that employs PROOFREADERS. I will be attempting to return it--not because of the content, but because there was such a discrepancy between the price and the workmanship (or lack thereof).
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on January 30, 2000
I have been a huge fan of Jakob Nielsen for years. I am also a subscriber to his Alertbox newsletter (on useit.com).
I was looking forward to this book, but alas, found nothing in here that I would classify as new or ground-breaking.
If you have never, and I mean never, read a book on web design, then by all means, buy this book. But if you have read anything by Waters, Weinnman, Pirouz, McClelland, Ibanez or Flemming (all excellent writers of web design and technique) then you have covered the topics in this book already.
There is no technical, or real design theory here.
Search the Useit.com archives and then subscribe either directly or through devhead (ZD Net) and save your money for his next book (of which this is Part I). You'll get the same information for free ;-)
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