inessential by Brent Simmons


Okay, here’s an example of really excrementally bad UI design.

I had to reboot Windows because it had gone crazy. So I went out to the grocery store, took a friend to the airport, re-painted my bathroom, discovered some new prime numbers, just to kill some time while waiting for it to re-boot.

Then when I got back there was a modal dialog box on my machine.

It said: Register Your Product. It had three buttons: Remind me in two weeks, never register, or register now.

Okay—but which freakin’ product?

I had no idea. So I clicked Register Now, figuring that the next thing I’d see is a dialog box that would somehow clue me in as to which product I’m registering.

You know what happened when I clicked the Register Now button?


Well, something. The dialog box went away. But nothing else happened. I just sat there staring at my desktop. Nothing continued to happen, until finally I fired up Visual C++ and went about my work.

I have no idea which “product” is responsible for this.