Category Archives: Software Requirement

Tools for Smart or Normal People?

I came across this question when I read those discussion emails about how a folder should be arranged. Arranging a folder may be easy for us, just create some sub folders and put some files into them accordingly. Does it require a big discussion? Why the folder should be finely arranged? Is it worth to spend lots of time discussing this problem?

Yes, we, developers, are creating tools for others. And we do not know who those others are. Then do we just assume that others are normal people or do we think that those others should be smart people? Smart people use tools vary from those normal people. Their thoughts are quite different. Tools suited for smart people may confuse normal people. And tools for normal people may make smart people think those tools is really dummy! Tools are for some specific ones.

Now, there are requirements and solutions for the whole tool things:

  1. Smart people create tools for smart people
  2. Smart people create tools for normal people
  3. Normal people create tools for smart people
  4. Normal people create tools for normal people

Think about Google, Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo or other big companies for these tool things.

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Less User Configurations

When designing software, there is a rule:

Do NOT let user see much of its configurations.

That is to say, make the software simpler, user may feel more comfortable. And if you let user configure too much, you won’t get better user experience but worse software maintenance.

There is another say:

Do NOT add new functions until strongly-required by majority.

If new functions or new configurations are added, it will require much more energies to decide whether to remove them or not!

Keep everything simpler, and have a happier life.

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