Archive for Programming Pearls

A List Apart: Articles: Never Use a Warning When You Can Use Undo

 The article title is poor grammar and misleading – I have corrected it in my post title but make no mistake – this is possible the most important article on software design that y0u will read all year. Please click through.

\A List Apart: Articles: Never Use a Warning When you Mean Undo

What have we learned? That interfaces that dont respect habituation are very bad. Making the warning bigger, louder, and impossible-to-ignore doesnt seem to work; any way we look at it, warnings lead us into a big black interface pit. So lets get rid of the warning altogether.
Undo to the rescueMerely removing warnings doesnt save our work from peril, but using an “undo” function does. Let me say that again: The solution to our warning woes is undo. With a robust undo, we can close our work with reckless abandon and be secure in the knowledge that we can always get it back. With undo, we can make that horrible “oops” feeling go away by getting our work back.

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