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Second Life Ui Contest July 3 2008

Finalists of an interface design contest for a Second Life(TM) client. Sponsored by Dusan Writer and not associated with Second Life or Linden Lab(TM). Contest results and details to be posted at http://dusanwriter.com

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Second Life Ui Contest July 3 2008

  1. 1. Second Life User Interface Design Contest FINALISTS July 3, 2008
  2. 2. “ I am inviting the creative, brilliant, thoughtful, insightful community of SL to submit designs for a new Second Life client. We can call it a “newbie viewer” or a “junior client” - whatever terms you want to give it.” http://dusanwriter.com/?p=557
  3. 3. Judges A panel of judges will evaluate the entries. The criteria for judging is to select the viewer that would, in the opinion of the panel, do the best job of improving the experience for a new or inexperienced user of Second Life. Eristic Strangelove Vint Falken Ordinal Malaprop Keystone Bouchard
  4. 4. ENTRY ONE McCabe Maxsted http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgqhscfd_3fh9k95f4
  5. 6. Overview <ul><li>The goal is to take the avatar through any of the five main tasks in second life in the course of two clicks or less. The five tasks are, from least time spent in-world to most: </li></ul><ul><li>Social interaction. </li></ul><ul><li>Exploring/Moving through the world. </li></ul><ul><li>Content Creation/Prim editing. </li></ul><ul><li>Business. </li></ul><ul><li>Shenanigans. </li></ul><ul><li>Shenanigans include such things as gesture acquisition, acquiring nifty weapons, role playing, etc. All of these require a fairly high level of comfort with the world as well as experience in the SL culture. For example, role playing generally involves well-dressed avs using huds and weapons that are completely comfortable socializing and exploring in SL. </li></ul>
  6. 7. <ul><li>Starting from the lower left, I've combined the voice chat with the text chat controls. One complaint I hear often is &quot;I don't know where the talk button is.&quot; Keeping everything chat related in the lower left hand corner indicates to users that if they need to communicate, that's the first place to look. </li></ul>
  7. 8. <ul><li>To the right of the omnichat button is communicate and local chat, followed by the chat bar, with say/shout, and gestures. To the right of that, the inventory and search. The audio/video controls have been moved to the center right, aligned vertically. </li></ul>
  8. 9. <ul><li>Atop the omnichat button is a fly-out pinned to the left-hand side of the screen. Open by default, it is collapsible, and displays four buttons. When each is clicked, a submenu appears to the right containing basic options. All of these are detachable and draggable anywhere on the screen. The goal is to not overwhelm the new resident, but also give them an easy gateway into the world. </li></ul>
  9. 10. Entry One: The Mock-Up <ul><li>1. Avatar button. Clicking this allows you to edit appearance, fly, always run, and attach/detach objects and huds. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Prim button. Clicking this will open the edit cursor above the equivalent of the top portion of the create window. If no prims are selected, the edit cursor remains open. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Camera button. Clicking this will bring up a menu for look/pan/camera rotate, and toggles the camera/movement controls. The camera/movement controls have reportedly been helpful to newbies, and will be on by default. </li></ul><ul><li>4. Snapshots button. Clicking on this will let you open the snapshots floater, take snapshots to disk, open the photo album in your inv in a new tab (will get to that further below), or save a snapshot/texture to your hd. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Inventory <ul><li>The inventory will have full cut/copy/paste functionality, as well as a new default Worn tab, and customizable tabs. Customized tabs can be set one of two ways: either dragging a folder to the tab placement, showing a shadow tab until the mouse is let go, or by right clicking a folder and selecting &quot;create tab.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>Instead of a tiny X, there will be a big Clear button to clear your inventory search. Underneath inv search will be filters, which will be nexted in a combobox. Selecting a filter from this combobox will open up a new tab, in focus, that named after that item (for example, Textures), which can then be searched and left open for future use. To the right of this combobox will be one button: clear filter. Filter options, along with recent items options, will be moved to the inventory menu and each open up their own floater. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Prim Editor <ul><li>The prim editor was designed with newbie content creation in mind. Next to position/rotation/size is a button that enables that tool. All the basic functions of building can be done from the main prim editor window, although a flyout button links to the more advanced options. </li></ul><ul><li>All prims can be profile cut, with profile cuts being renamed to &quot;Slice&quot; for boxes. The button next to the begin/end spinners is a cornering button. Clicking any one of the corners will chop 1/4th out of a prim for that particular cut, allowing for quick halving and quartering without remembering the default numbers (a pain for even experienced users). </li></ul>
  12. 13. Texture Editor <ul><li>Texturing was moved out of hte tools floater and into its own floater. The reasoning for this was that sometimes you want to strictly edit textures on a build or your avatar, and since most building is not done with the texturing window open, moving it to its own unique floater will provide better access instead of keeping it in the swiss army knife that is the tools floater. </li></ul><ul><li>All the options from the texture tab are there, as well as Select Texture, which has been renamed to Select Face </li></ul>
  13. 14. Map/Mini-Map <ul><li>The map and mini-map have been combined. By default, the mini-map is open, although it will have a little hide button in the upper right that will send it to the upper right of the screen. From the mini-map, a mouse-over button will reveal several options, such as &quot;search for sim&quot; &quot;find mappable friends&quot; and &quot;show my location&quot;. All of these will open up the map proper. </li></ul><ul><li>Generally, the map doesn't seem to be used except by experienced users who know what they're doing. This will introduce the map to new users in a friendly way, as well as focus them on its main uses. </li></ul>
  14. 15. ENTRY TWO Rheta Shan http://rhetasworld.files.wordpress.com/2008/06/big-makeover.pdf
  15. 23. ENTRY THREE Jacek Antonelli http://docs. google .com/Doc?id=dgv2jprg_15ffm68rhr
  16. 26. Goals <ul><li>Pick low-hanging fruit. Make simple changes that offer large improvements in usability. </li></ul><ul><li>Keep your feet on the ground. Suggested changes should be feasible, not pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking. </li></ul><ul><li>Make it better for everyone. Improve usability for all users, and you'll improve usability for newbies as well. </li></ul><ul><li>Don't cripple the UI. Generally, avoid &quot;dumbing down&quot; the UI as a strategy for making it more approachable. </li></ul><ul><li>Note: It is not my intent to make any suggestions regarding interface style / theme, only usability and functionality. </li></ul>
  17. 27. Menu Bar <ul><li>Second Life is a complex application, and its menus reflect that. Many users find the huge number of menu items intimidating; further, the lack of any sort of logical arrangement to these menu items makes the menus difficult to learn and navigate. I therefore propose a substantial reorganization of the menus to correct these shortcomings, by grouping related items into menus and submenus. The full listing is given in Appendix A. </li></ul><ul><li>The benefits of this reorganization can be summarized as such: </li></ul><ul><li>Menu items are organized in a more logical manner, making them easier to locate. </li></ul><ul><li>Top-level menus are smaller, so that the user is not overwhelmed by them. </li></ul><ul><li>Useful related functions (e.g. building tools) are located in sub-menus, which can be torn off for easy access. </li></ul><ul><li>Besides simple reorganization, a few new menu items are proposed: </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Logout&quot;, to log out your avatar and return to the login screen without needing to restart. </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Reconnect&quot;, to log out and then log in again without needing to restart. </li></ul><ul><li>&quot;Refresh Avatar&quot;, which rebakes your textures and avatar shape. </li></ul>
  18. 28. Inventory <ul><li>One of the timeless struggles in Second Life is that of locating something in your inventory. The tendency to accumulate a large number of items, combined with crude and difficult organization and filtering tools, can make inventory management overwhelming for newbies and oldbies alike. The task of finding an item has been made easier by the addition of the search feature, &quot;Recent Items&quot; tab, and the ability to filter the view by inventory type, but there are still a number of improvements that could be made. </li></ul><ul><li>Category Tabs: The addition of the &quot;Recent Items&quot; tab demonstrated easy access to items meeting a specific criterium. I propose two additional tabs, which would allow access based on two new criteria: </li></ul><ul><li>Favorites. This tab displays only items and folders which are marked as &quot;favorites&quot;. An item is marked via the right click menu, as described below. The favorites list could be stored locally as a data file, or on the server (with Linden Lab cooperation). </li></ul><ul><li>Worn. This tab displays only clothing and objects which are currently worn / attached to the avatar. </li></ul><ul><li>Either category tab can be further narrowed down via the Search box or the Quick Filter selection box, described below. </li></ul>
  19. 29. Quick Filter <ul><li>The interface for accessing current filter functionality is awkward and hard to find. Many users don't even know such functionality exists; many of those who do know about it find it awkward to use. Simple, prominent access to the filtering system would make it more usable, and allow users to quickly refine their inventory searches and views. </li></ul><ul><li>My proposed solution is the &quot;Quick Filter&quot; selection box, as illustrated above. The user simply selects an item type from the menu, and the inventory will display only items of that type. For item types which have more specific sub-types (Body Parts, Clothing) or multiple states (Calling Cards, Landmarks), the corresponding menu entry has its own sub-menu, listing the more specific types / states. </li></ul><ul><li>The Quick Filter selection box can be used alone or in combination with the Search box and/or the various category tabs. </li></ul>
  20. 30. Right-Click Enhancements <ul><li>I propose the addition of several new items to the menu which appears when an item/folder is right-clicked in inventory. These new items offer easy access to a number of organizing and filtering functions: </li></ul><ul><li>* Send to... Allows the user to move the object to another folder: the folder for that item type (or a subfolder), any subfolder of your inventory, or any folder another item was recently sent to. </li></ul><ul><li>* Filter this type. Sets the Quick Filter type to the selected item's type. </li></ul><ul><li>* Search this name. Populates the Search box with the selected item's name, allowing the user to easily search for items with the same or similar name. </li></ul><ul><li>* Mark as Favorite. Marks the item as a favorite, so it will appear in the &quot;Favorites&quot; tab. (If the item is already a favorite, this item changes to &quot;Unmark as Favorite&quot;.) </li></ul>
  21. 31. Appendix A: New Menu Structure <ul><li>See full listing at: </li></ul><ul><li>http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgv2jprg_15ffm68rhr </li></ul>
  22. 32. ENTRY FOUR Damien Fate
  23. 33. The Bottom Bar <ul><li>It ’s difficult to remove features to make an interface easier to understand for new residents without angering experienced residents who have come to rely on certain buttons being present at all times. </li></ul><ul><li>With this in mind, I came up with an idea that should keep everyone happy. An ability to quickly toggle between 3 levels of interface. Level 1, is a much lighter version of the current interface - best used for those who are mainly here to socialise rather than explore or build. This provides an easy introduction into Second Life without being confused trying to learn how to fly, what media options are and other confusing questions new residents are faced with these days. </li></ul><ul><li>The chat bar, “stand”and “release keys”UI would only be visible when applicable. The History button is a much needed addition to the chat bar, many new users frequently miss chat and have no idea how to view it again. </li></ul>
  24. 34. The Bottom Bar <ul><li>Level 2 adds more functionality. Adding the Fly button and advanced media options. </li></ul>
  25. 35. The Bottom Bar <ul><li>Level 3 has all the features you find on today ’s viewer - with a few extras which I think would be well received! Appearance mode, View Alpha, View Scripted, View Physical and Sim Stats. No longer will you have to use finger bending shortcuts or go through a few submenus to activate these features. </li></ul>
  26. 36. The Top Bar <ul><li>One of the main features that could be easily implemented into the top bar would be a simple dropdown list of places been in the order they were visited. Not unlike an internet browser. </li></ul><ul><li>The Next button would only apply if you went back to a previous location, the next button would show where you returned from. Also I would like to have a dropdown menu next to the L$ balance that didn ’t just take you straight to a purchase window. Why not have a sell window also? </li></ul>
  27. 37. The Top Bar <ul><li>I have never been a fan of the square radar in SL. I wonder if the mentality was mainly that the sims themselves were square so the radar should be too - but the sim map rotates around awkwardly inside the square box. A round radar would look much more aesthetically pleasing and maybe even less confusing. The addition of a + and - button to zoom in and out without the need to right click the radar would also be helpful. </li></ul>
  28. 38. The Top Bar
  29. 39. Inventory <ul><li>I don ’t have too many issues with the interface for inventory visually, but there are some functions which could be added to make things much easier. One of these additions would be the ability the use the a View menu to see items of a specific type in your inventory. I know that currently there is a filter option, but it ’s clunky and difficult and doesn ’t have sub-categories of clothing or body parts. </li></ul>
  30. 40. Inventory
  31. 41. Inventory
  32. 42. ENTRY FIVE Roy Cassini http://www.slideshare.net/royality/second-life-interface
  33. 54. LATE ENTRY Vincent Nacon
  34. 56. Dusan Writer’s Metaverse http://dusanwriter.com