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Making Links usable again

     
4:07 am on Jul 22, 2016 (gmt 0)

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In the early days of the web, we all knew how to find links on a page - blue text with an underline was a link. You could argue, as some human factors experts did, that this was a poor choice - blue is not the best color, underlines conflict sometimes with filenames_using_underscores and so on. But it was clear.

And for many years now, the vogue has been to make links practically impossible to find. I actually run some sites that I did not design where I basically cannot see the links (I have a minor color impairment, but I've asked others and the links are just very hard to see; impossible with some monitor settings).

Lately, I've seen some sites that make links really obvious. Big thick underlines and changing the background (not the font color) on hover. Wired is one example. I find myself saying "Yes. Thank you!"

It makes me wonder - are we seeing a rollback where for a long time a graphic designer ruled the design with no input from a usability expert or UX/UI designer to where people are calling "Enough!" on non-functional design?
9:04 pm on Aug 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

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I don't really care how many lemmings jump off a cliff, I'm not following them.
9:34 pm on Aug 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Lemminigs do not actually jump off cliffs. That's a myth which came from a Walt Disney nature show.
12:04 am on Aug 4, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Well then I'm not jumping off the mythical cliff! :)
2:34 am on Aug 6, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What I don't like that some have tried, is changing the font size on hover. That just jars me.


Scripted mouse:over pop-ups just jar me even more -- News sites do this most often and most are related to ads, but even still, the script-kiddies, rock-stars, and gurus that write this garbage should be forced to having to use their own work.

In the body of the text, I'll use slight colour variants along with a title-tag without changing the font size or type at all -- I rarely if even ever at all use the text 'click here' on anything else either inside or outside of the body text - again, depending on the header/footer or sidebar styling, I'll still use the same method - Only in rare instances do I ever bold a link, and if I do, it's only in the header/footer or sidebar.
3:17 am on Aug 6, 2016 (gmt 0)

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What all are looking for is consistency. Deviate too far and the site becomes a comic disaster (regardless how "arty" it might be). On sites geared for phones and tablets (that's the market sought) the word link is there, along with a "tap" icon for pudgy fingers. Do things that are intuitive and all are happy ... but dong it for art is something else (I don't recommend).
8:58 pm on Aug 8, 2016 (gmt 0)

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Tangor
+99 :-)

Scripted mouseshockedver pop-ups just jar me even more


mcneely - you're preaching to the choir here. Of course, I would be a significant number of people in this thread are running some sort of script blocker and we don't even see most of those popup (certainly not if they're ads driven by third-party scripts).
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