Title: Complexity and User Experience: Understanding features in terms of complexity instead of functionality
Context: Reducing complexity involves ruthless editorial control over feature inclusion. Now if we can just convince the sales guys that this is the right thing to do…
Synopsis: How many wars has the Swiss Army Knife helped the Swiss Army win? Maybe the complexity and subsequent inefficacy of that object as a weapon of war is alone testament to the neutrality adopted by the Swiss sovereign state. If only the original Swiss Army ordnance team had reigned in the scope of their combat armament design the whole history of the European continent might have been rewritten. Complexity has consequences. Ones that are often overlooked in the rush to solve problems. Not every problem can be solved – nor should be solved – by a single stroke of production. Keeping a laser guided focus on our design target in order to confine our scope for maximum effect should be the UX designer’s most overarching goal. And that, I am sure you will agree, is more than enough war metaphors for one day…
Best Bit: “Over-designed and complex products typically stem from a ‘more is better’ philosophy. Expanding the feature count beyond what’s truly needed is perceived to increase the overall value.”

via boxesandarrows.com