While I have not been at Starbucks, or school, or some sort of news station I have had the chance to read Steve Krug’s “Don’t Make Me Think.” The book details the ways people use the web, the patterns associated with their usage, and ways for producers of web pages to organize their content more efficiently. Being new to the blogging scene I found this book to be particularly useful.
Some interesting concepts, “The Facts of Life” presented in the book can be found in Chapter Two. These facts address the ways in which users really use the web, which is completely different from the way web designers wish they would. My favorite fact was Fact #2: “We Don’t Make Optimal Choices. We Satisfice.” Basically, we muddle through content because we are lazy, we don’t get punished for clicking on the wrong link, and guessing is more fun. I found this amusing because I can remember specific instances when I have just clicked or Googled random things just to see what fun fact I could find on the Internet.
Being that I am a telecommunications major and have had simple sentence structure drilled into my head for the past three years, I also found it interesting that Krug recommends using as little words as possible when writing for the web. Getting rid of words that do not add meaning to a sentence and just add to the word count on a page should be avoided at all times! While this seems like common sense it is surprising to see all of the word-clutter present on web pages. My biggest pet-peeve concerning this concept is the use of the word “that.” My newsroom producers have trained me to omit this word as often as possible. When writing and using this word try taking it out of the sentence and you will see that often times you can take it out of the sentence and it will still make sense!
While these two paragraphs only address very minor details of the book there is also so much more…like information on a usability test, fixing your homepage, helping your coworkers use the internet, and so much more…but I will leave that for you to explore. =) All I can say is that I really did enjoy reading this book. It was an easy read and very applicable, which was the main goal of Krug’s while he was writing it. I also liked it because Krug has my dream job…being an Internet consultant.
In the future I hope to attain my Master’s degree in interactive media and visual language with hope to one day help people tell their stories on the web more effectively. Krug’s book gave me insight into the field I one day hope to enter and a lot of advice that will benefit my future. I feel that reading this book will not only add to knowledge for my schoolwork now, but also help me in my professional career in the near future.