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Revision as of 13:27, 31 October 2007 by SannaH (Talk | contribs)

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Language and terminology

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Language is a big part of an application. First, you need to think of language from localization point of view. The user should have the opportunity to use the application on her/his native language. Second, you need to use language and terms that the user knows and expects to be used. There are a lot of established terms in the world of handsets. Although change is good, some things are better left untouched. The user is more likely to be frustrated than pleased if s/he can’t find a feature by s/he is looking for by the term s/he is used to.

In addition you have to avoid technical terms and keep the terminology consistent throughout the application. Youn can’t say exit here and out there and mean the same thing. It confuses the user and stresses her/his memory.

By using terms that are familiar to the user you can support her/his learning process. It’s easier to learn how to use an application if the terminology relates to the users’ tasks and goals and stays consistent. Also, consistent terminology makes using of the application more effective. User’s memory is not loaded with unknown terms and things that need to be remembered. Being able to concentrate on doing things instead of trying to figure out where to find things increases the level of satisfaction.

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