Jacob Baytelman



UX vs UI or why graphic designers should listen carefully when engineers speak




UX: the cookies on the left, the cup handle on the right, slightly turned towards the user, who is likely to be right-handed and thus would prefer to raise a hot cup with the right hand.
UI: the cookies and the cup to be held with the right hand.

UX: a spoon should be of a reasonable size. And positioned to be comfortably taken with the left hand.
UI: who cares about spoon sizes. The customer should use the right hand only. For the cup, the spoon and the cookies.

UX: the cup is quite big, itís probably a tea cup, the liquid is not specified.
UI: the cup is much smaller, the liquid is strange, itís rather hot chocolate than coffee (have you ever seen brown coffee with bubbles?)

The shadows in this example are more than strange, just try imagining what kind of lighting makes them.



Light source "A" creates the shadow "A" inside the cup (as well as the reflection on the edge of the cup). "B" creates the shadow B under the spoon, "C" creates the shadow "C", "D" makes that strange shadow between the cookies. All these light sources interfere with each other, in reality we will see only one shadow, from the brightest light source.

I do not ask you to trust me just because I am an engineer, let us check it:


We see the shadow from our main source of light in the room (A).


Now we see the shadow from the brightest source of light (B), while the shadow from the main source is hardly visible (A).

How ofter do we have such examples in reality and what was the purpose of adding that level of complexity to the image the more so it was not marked in the the original UX scheme? I know the answer: some graphic designers love to make things look beautiful even when it makes no practical sense and even contradicts the technical specification. Bear this in mind when you need some work to be done by an artist and clarify your requirements; what is obvious to an engineer might leave too much freedom for a graphic designer.



J.Baytelman September, 2019