#13 Can a $6 stylus + trackpad replace an expensive stylus?

Wacom stylus is great for hand drawing sketches if you can afford it.

iPad with Apple Pencil is nice too.

But Wacom top-of-the-line products with a large display could cost a few thousand dollars. And Apple Pencil plus iPad Pro are almost $1000.

If you already have MacBook Pro, it has a fairly large trackpad.

And surprisingly, any affordable capacitive stylus works on a trackpad. Some of capacitive styluses are under 10 dollars, which is very affordable compared to Wacom or Apple Pencil.

Now a capacitive stylus on a trackpad is definitely not perfect. In fact you need to get used to three things:

1) pressure, 2) angle, and 3) registration.

You have to get used to applying light but enough pressure on a trackpad to make the stylus register its relative position on screen with relatively up-right angle.

This is quite different compared to when using your own finger. With your own finger, you hardly apply any pressure to the trackpad. It just works without you noticing it as soon as you put your finger on the surface of a trackpad.

But with a capacitive stylus, you need to consistently apply a light pressure to move around a cursor on screen. Then, once you want to draw a line, you apply more pressure to make the trackpad “click”.

For example, when you draw a circle with a stylus, as long as you are drawing a continuous line, everything is fine, the line keeps get drawn as you move the stylus with a firm pressure.

Now once you finish a stroke, and want to draw the second stroke, that’s when you need to register your stylus’s starting position.

When using a trackpad, you are actually doing this by moving around your index finger to find out where your cursor is on a screen. But while we are used to this behavior with a mouse or a trackpad, doing the same thing by applying a light pressure to a stylus feels quite different.

So basically with a capacitive stylus on a trackpad, you end up drawing on a trackpad continuously, sometimes drawing with light pressure, other times drawing with firm pressure. The only thing is that when you are drawing with light pressure, you are actually not drawing, but just moving around the cursor.

This is where more expensive solutions like Wacom and Apple Pencil on iPad provide better experience, so that you don’t need to worry about registering a new position of a stylus on a screen.

With Wacom stylus, it continuously registers the pen position even when a pen is off screen.

With Apple Pencil + iPad, you don’t have this problem because it’s a touch screen.

So if a precise control is super important for you and you can afford it, it’s definitely better to get Wacom or Apple Pencil.

But for more casual users, a capacitive stylus on a trackpad is a good affordable solution once you get used to it.

Check out YouTube version too!

#12 Can you simulate an automatic experience in 10 min?

So UX prototype is all about simulating, or faking an experience so that it feels like a real product.

These days, we expect products and services to be smarter. We expect things to happen automatically. We expect just the right amount of information presented to us at the right moment when we need it.

For example, a notification comes up on screen that tells you that you’ve been still for too long that you should stand up and stretch your body.

Or you might ask your voice assistant, “What’s on my calendar today?” Which displays your today’s schedule on screen. Or you come back home, entering a living room, which activates a TV screen, displaying a “welcome home” message.

In real products, you need various technology to make these scenarios happen, such as motion sensors, voice recognition software, proximity sensor, face recognition software, and so on.

But in UX prototypes, none of these are needed to simulate these experiences. That’s the beauty of UX prototypes.

So how do you do?

Just use a keyboard as an interaction trigger in your prototype software, and use a keyboard or a remote controller to trigger that from outside of the device that you are running a prototype on.

Let’s take an example of popping up a notification. Here’s a simple prototype created in Adobe XD running on a computer, simulating a phone experience.

I can press “A” key on a keyboard which triggers a prototype on my MacBook to show a notification. In this case, I’m using HDE Bluetooth mini keyboard to send a key command to a prototype running on a Macbook.

In a prototype, I have two artboards, one with a notification set to transparent, the other with a notification visible. An interaction trigger from screen 1 to 2 is set to a keyboard with an assigned key “A”.

This is all I have.

To run a prototype on mobile, I can create it in Axure.

Here, the same prototype is running on Axure Cloud mobile app on my iPhone. Now I have a mini keyboard connected to my iPhone via bluetooth. Again, I can press “A” key on my mini keyboard to trigger a notification on my Axure prototype running on my iPhone.

This set up is pretty flexible and powerful in simulating various automatic user experiences. You can apply to any screen-based devices such as PlayStation 4, Smart TV, tablets, smartphones, PC.

It would work best if you serve as a prototype controller, and have another person as a user who experiences your prototype. Because you have full control over when to trigger the notification, you can time it based on various different factors, such as…

  • When a user picks up a phone
  • When a user comes close and glances over a phone
  • When a user comes in front of a screen
  • When a user is sitting on a chair, and just looked down on a phone

Possibilities are endless.

Important thing is, all of these should be decided based on what kind of user experience that you would like to achieve.

Engineers make functional prototypes. Due to the nature of their work, engineers focus on real functionality.

On the other hand, we as UX designers are free from this limitation, when creating user experience prototypes.

UX designers should be as creative and imaginative as possible when creating a user experience. UX prototype should provide a user experience as close to real as possible.

In achieving that real feeling, there’s no constrains. Things can be “staged” by multiple prototype operators. Things can be faked as if it’s working for real. The only constrains there are your imagination and creativity.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that UX designers should ignore engineering constrains. At the end of the day, a product needs to be built by engineers in order to launch. And there will be many real world constrains to overcome for sure.

But it’s important for a UX designer to simulate what the ideal experience could be, where team members and user test participants can actually feel.

Then, you’ll get a lot of feedback, such as this feels great, but in reality it takes more time for a server to respond to this type of request in real-time, for example.

If the initial UX prototype generates enough delight and buy-ins from stakeholders, it might motivate engineers to overcome obstacles to make it happen.

Check out YouTube version too!

#11 Let go of your perfectionism

We always aspire for a perfectionism.

Especially for things that we care a lot, we want it to be perfect. Be it your first date, your wedding, initial setup for your brand-new mobile phone, your first job interview…the list goes on.

Unfortunately, perfectionism tends to have more negative effects than positive ones. It sets you back. It gives you an excuse not to take the next step. Like “Oh, it’s still not perfect, I’m still working on it, so I cannot move on….”

But the more time you spend, the harder it becomes to complete because now the expectation is higher. It traps you into a vicious cycle.

The key to avoiding this is to let go of your perfectionism.

Get used to being imperfect. Embrace being imperfect. When you think about learning how to ski, it’s pretty clear that you have to try by yourself, right? You end up falling down a lot, but that’s just part of the learning process.

We seem to forget this when it comes to intellectual activities such as learning UX.

Whether you take college programs or bootcamp or on your own, the important thing is you actually work on projects by yourself. The more you try by yourself, the better you will become.

You should start trying before you feel you are fully ready. In fact, you will probably learn a lot more, a lot faster this way.

In order to do so, you need to let go of your perfectionism, and feel comfortable enough being imperfect and try.

It’s interestingly counter-intuitive, but it’s true.

In today’s UX practice, we put rough prototypes in front of users to quickly find out if it works for the users or not. It’s important to do this earlier than later so that you can “fail fast”.

As a result, you learn problems quicker, iterate quicker, which leads to a better design quicker before investing too much time.

When you are learning to become a UX designer, it’s the same thing. In this case, you are “a UX designer prototype” yourself! To improve yourself quicker, it’s better to actually work with PM, engineers, other UX designers, UX researchers on a UX project, earlier than later.

This is the most valuable way to learn what works and what doesn’t. You may get critical feedback, sometimes even harsh ones.But that’s OK. Those are all part of the learning process. Just like falling down painfully while practicing how to ski…

Try for yourself early and fail fast!

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#10 Macbook keyboard disappointment

So I currently use MacBook Pro 15 inch as my primary computer every day. I’ve been using Mac for many years. The current MacBook Pro is a little over a year old.

And I have to say that I’m disappointed with its keyboard, even though it works perfectly fine functionality wise.


Because the keyboard is getting very messy.

My newer 15″ MacBook Pro keyboard with damaged keys

As you can see in the picture, the keys, “A”, “S”,“D”, “C”, “M”, and “O” and command key all have their white inks “overflown” to the surface of the keys and making the keys look pretty bad, as if a white ink was spilled over.

And the thing is, I already brought my MacBook to an Apple Store to replace the keyboard a few months ago. After replacing the keyboard, it didn’t take that long until exactly the same issue happened again.

And now, because it has passed one year since the purchase, it’s no longer under warranty, so I have to pay if I were to replace the keyboard again!

As a comparison, this is a keyboard of my older 17 inch MacBook from 2009. The irony is that the keyboard looks perfectly fine compared to my newer Macbook.

My older 17″ MacBook keyboard still looks perfectly fine after all these years.

So why does the new MacBook have this problem, while an older MacBook does not?

Apple is a great company, and make beautiful products. But because of that, when you come across something like this, it’s a lot of disappointment. I know that it doesn’t affect my productivity, and functionality-wise it works just fine.

But user experience is not just about functionality.

Every time I see the messy keyboard, it makes me feel frustrated. This is very much part of my user experience too.

It’s even ironic to see such a basic problem right below a fancy, shiny LED strip that dynamically shows contextual buttons and sliders.

And it’s sad to see a company and a brand that was once known to be a master of user experience has such a basic production issue.

As one of long time Apple users, I really hope that Apple take this kind of problem seriously.

Check out YouTube version too!

Also, check out the follow-up story on this!

#9 Delight from Office Depot LIFT & PRESS envelope

So what’s up with an envelope?

Such an outdated thing in a digital age of email and social media, right? I know, who uses an envelope these days?

Actually, you still use envelopes quite often even in today’s world even though many things have moved to a digital world. Sending checks, submitting application forms and so on.

With a traditional envelope, typically, you would have to lick the edge of a flip to “activate” the adhesive in order to seal it.

Licking an envelope has never been a pleasant experience for me. But I did it anyway, since that still seemed the easiest way compared to other ways, like rushing to a bathroom or a kitchen sink and so on.

Here’s Office Depot LIFT & PRESS envelope. Interesting thing is that it has a second flip on the other side of the envelope.

According to their description, “We use the patented Reveal-N-Seal technology & envelope design. To seal, lift up the lower flap to expose the strong adhesive. Then press the top flap down to bond the envelope closed.”

Another point is that there’s “no removable paper strips to throw away”, which is nice too.

Now, this is nothing super-advanced technologically. Everything is old school. But I think it’s a brilliant idea.

It’s just a slight modification from an ancient product that we are so used to using for ages. And yet, this small modification changed the user experience of sealing an envelope simpler, and most importantly, much more pleasant than it used to be.

The point here is that user experience is not just about fancy digital user interfaces that looks super-cool.

In fact, any products, any services will trigger user experience of some sort, whether physical or digital, old or new.

Also, user experience does not have to be about cutting-edge innovative technology. Actually user experience itself is nothing to do with technology.

User experience designer’s job is to solve a user’s problem and make the user experience better, easier, simpler, more pleasant and delightful.

That’s what this envelope is exactly doing. This envelope illustrates that even a mundane, ancient product could have a room to improve the user experience without any cutting-edge technology.

A practical, creative idea can make a huge impact on our everyday lives, potentially with just a slight modification of an existing thing.

And I think that’s great.

That’s one of great values that UX designers can bring to the table.

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#8 Amazon customer support chat: good and bad

I order something on Amazon, but the item did not arrive even though the tracking said it was “delivered”. So I looked for their customer support, and initiated their chat session.

These days, customer support chat is becoming more and more popular. Sometimes, there’s a live person responding. Other times it’s a chatbot.

From a business perspective, a chatbot could save a ton of money so that they can minimize the number of live person to respond to customer inquiries.

From a customer’s perspective, chatbot could be frustrating when you type in your questions and the chatbot doesn’t understand. Because chatbot is typically fairly limited in terms of understanding a human’s free-form questions, this happens quite often.

Amazon solved this problem by presenting a few canned answers for a customer to choose from. A customer is ONLY allowed to choose his reply from given options, instead of free-form typing.

From Amazon’s perspective, this substantially limits the error cases, almost down to none, as the customer’s reply is always predictable. This is pretty much the same as a typical automated voice system when you call a customer support phone line. But it flows much better because you can always see all the options and the chat history.

In my case, canned options worked perfectly by me choosing the following options:

“Got it!” “Yes, that’s it” “Didn’t get it” “Package never arrived”.

After choosing these 4 replies, the chatbot finally gave me a new information, saying that “OK, looks like the delivery status may have been updated too soon. The good news is it should arrive soon. Give us until the end of day Fri, Dec 06. Really appreciate your patience with this. Is there anything else I can help with?”

Then another group of reply options were presented. I don’t remember all the options, but I chose “What if I don’t get it?”

Then the chatbot replied: “If for some reason it doesn’t get there by then, definitely come back & we’ll request your money back or send another one.”

So I replied with: “OK, will do”

Chatbot: Is there anything else I can help you with?

Me: “No, that’s all”

Chatbot: “OK. We’ll post any updates and next steps in Your Orders. Thanks for choosing Amazon. I’m here to help whenever you have an issue.”

The good news is, that the item did arrive on the date the chatbot suggested. So it all worked out well.

Now a question still remained. The tracking never got updated, neither on Amazon website, nor USPS tracking site. Both remained as “delivered” which was a wrong status. I can only assume that when the chatbot responded that “the delivery status may have been updated too soon”, Amazon server actually communicated with USPS server and retrieved the real information. Or, it simply tried to buy some time without any data.

If Amazon was able to get a real information from USPS that reflects the reality, then that same information should have updated the tracking status of Amazon order page and USPS tracking site.

But because it didn’t, that made me wonder if the chatbot reply was really trustworthy or not.

These days,  more than ever, various services are integrated with each other. In this case, my user experience of tracking the status of my order at Amazon consisted of me interacting with Amazon chatbot and USPS tracking website.

Even though the item actually arrived on time as the chatbot mentioned, USPS tracking and Amazon order tracking did not reflect that, which resulted in my mixed feeling. I wasn’t sure if the information that the chatbot told me was really true, until I finally received the item.

In an ideal world, I should have received a tracking update from Amazon, based on an accurate tracking update communicated from USPS to Amazon, so that I didn’t even have to contact Amazon in the first place.

These are the things that UX designer should keep an eye on, when designing a user experience. As you start looking into an end-to-end user experience, you may find that it’s actually a lot broader than what you initially thought.

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#7 A delight from Starbucks free reusable cup

So I go to Starbucks quite often.

Recently I got a free reusable cup as part of their holiday campaign. So this is the free reusable cup. And quite honestly, I’m quite surprised to find out that I am really pleased with it.

There are multiple reasons for this.

First, I don’t need to feel guilty about wasting paper cups anymore every time I get a cup of coffee, now that I can bring this cup.

Bringing your own cup also gets you a 10 cent discount, which is nice. Plus, if you are up for the 2nd cup, you can get the refill just for 50 cents, which is good too.

While all these are definitely nice small things, these are not what I wanted to highlight today.

The number one reason why I’m so pleased with this cup is that it does not drip coffee at all from a gap between the lid and the cup.

This dripping problem is something that I was annoyed with a paper cup in the past. It didn’t happen every time. There were probably more times that it didn’t happen, honestly speaking. But it definitely happened once in a while. And when it happened, it was pretty bad because the coffee dripped straight on my shirt or pants and made stains!

I couldn’t quite figure out what caused it, but it seemed that when you happened to have a cup and a lid that are slightly loosely fit with each other, AND when a small amount of coffee happened to get caught in a thin gap towards the edge of the lid, that seemed to cause the dripping to occur.

When this happens, its most likely that the dripping will hit your clothes because of the angle that you hold when you sip a coffee like this.

It’s a small thing, but it does ruin your otherwise pleasant morning coffee experience.

Ever since I started using this reusable plastic cup, the dripping issue never happened.

Because it’s made of sturdier plastic, it seems to have a very tight fit between the lid and the cup.

This tight fit is probably the primary reason for preventing it from dripping a coffee from in-between the lid and the cup. Because in case of a disposable cup, it’s a combination of a thin plastic lid and a paper cup, two different materials. And, a paper cup may shrink or bloat which could affect the tightness of the lid. I’m not sure how Starbucks people are even aware of these things.

But something as subtle as this could make a pretty big impact on our daily user experience. It’s not something that is super cool or anything.

But it gives me a piece of mind for my coffee experience now that I’m free from that annoying dripping problem.

And it’s quite amazing when you think about it that some of the things that brought me such a pleasant experience is a free, reusable plastic cup, rather than a shinny new gadget!

Even if you primarily work on user interfaces for digital products, it’s interesting and valuable to think about these user experiences of physical products.

At the end of the day, even user experience of digital products will have some sort of touch points in a physical world. And you may find some UX problems of your digital product in a physical touchpoint.

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#6 UX happens within a person’s mind

So we, user experience designers typically work on user interfaces of digital products, whether it’s a mobile app, a web application, or an embedded product user interface for an electronics device/etc.

Naturally, many people think that UX designers only build digital user interfaces and that’s all they care.

A user interface is certainly a touchpoint and a trigger for a user experience to happen, for sure.

But a user interface itself is just a medium, just a trigger. 

In order for a user experience to happen, you need to have a user, who interacts with a product via its user interface.

Furthermore, in order for this to actually happen, you need a certain context, a reason why this user is interacting with this product via its user interface.

Then you will start to realize that what initially seemed like a symbolization of UX (a product user interface), is only one component of a user experience, and user experience is something much bigger.

So what do all these mean to UX designers?

What this means is that one particular product user interface could provide an excellent user experience in one context, but may provide a terrible user experience in another context.

It also means that the same product user interface could result in an excellent user experience for a user A, while it could end up producing a poor user experience for a user B.

This also means a person’s user experience is also influenced by her cultural, educational and social background.

I recently had an interesting experience when talking to one of my friends.

I created a chart comparing a few things, and initially used a circle to represent “yes/positive”, an “X” to represent “no/negative”, a triangle to represent in-between.

I am Japanese, born and raised in Japan, so I still have Japanese cultural background after having been lived in the US for quite some time.

My friend, who is originally from India, seemed confused about these symbols that I used in the chart.

Only after seeing her confusion, I realized that how I used these symbols are completely based on my Japanese cultural background.

In Japan, teachers mark student’s answer sheet with circles for correct answers, crosses for wrong answers, and triangles for imperfect but not completely wrong answers.

However in Western culture, teachers use checkmarks for correct answers, and circles to highlight wrong answers!

It was funny because I kew all these differences through my own experience in the past.

And I’m a user experience designer with years of experience!

Yet still, I completely forgot about all these, and my behavior was heavily dictated by my own cultural background without me realizing it.

This episode illustrates just a tip of an iceberg in terms of how each person’s user experience of a particular product is influenced by her own cultural, educational and social background, which shapes her perception and understanding when experiencing a product.

All of which is why, conducting user research and clarifying the target user are so important when working on a user experience project.

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#5 Prototype is worth a 1000 pictures

For a UX designer, a prototype plays a critical role.

A picture is worth a thousand words.

A prototype is worth a thousand pictures.

As an example let’s say,  “I want to create a stop-motion of a clay model performing pushups”.

From a product point of view, this could be an instructional video product, or part of an exercise app, but let’s not too worry about that, as we are focusing on differences between words, a picture and a prototype.

If I want to communicate my concept in words as descriptive as possible, it would be something like this:

A stop-motion of a clay model performing pushups.

  1. Create a human figure using a clay
  2. Put the clay model in a pushup starting position
  3. Take a still photo of the clay model in a pushup starting position
  4. Bend arms of the clay model slightly to represent an initial progression of the pushup movement going down towards a ground, and take a still photo of it.
  5. Repeat step 4 until the clay figure is fully in the bottom position of the pushup touching the ground.
  6. Import all the photos into an animation software, and place photos in a sequence. This is the first half of pushup sequence, from a top position to a bottom position.
  7. Copy above sequence, and reverse the order of still images to create the 2nd half of pushup sequence, pushing up from the bottom back to the top position.
  8. This completes one pushup movement.
  9. Copy and repeat the cycle the desired number of times

Stop-motion: An animation technique where you take many still shots of an object with slight changes, put those in sequence, and playback one after another in order to make it look like the object is moving.

Now this lengthy text description can be visualized in one diagram, which is basically a picture.

Showing steps from 1 to 6, each has illustrations and descriptions
A diagram describing a stop-motion of a clay model performing pushups with illustrations

As you can see, a picture, in this case a diagram, makes it easier for human to comprehend the concept better compared to a lengthy text because it’s visual, therefore you can immediately see it.

Now, while this picture, which is a diagram, is easier to see compared to text-only description, it still requires some sort of logical decoding to fully understand what’s explained, and does not convey the feeling of the final product.

It’s like looking at an instructional manual for assembling a furniture.

You can see what kind of furniture that is, but you don’t get the feeling of what it’s like when its built.

We, humans respond to things emotionally.

Before we understand things logically, we sense and feel things intuitively, emotionally first.

OK, let’s go back to our clay model stop motion.

So here’s a “prototype” of the clay model stop-motion.

Stop-motion video of a clay figure doing pushups

As you can see, it immediately gives you a live, vivid impression including the color, the texture, the motion, and so on.

Now, I intentionally made the picture rough and black and white to make the prototype stand out even more with a stark contrast.

I also intentionally used an example which is not a typical UX project with some digital user interfaces.

I wanted to really highlight the differences between words (text), picture and a prototype through a simple, straightforward example to make the point clearer.

A definition of prototype is broad.

According to wikipedia, “a prototype is an early sample, model, or release of a product built to test a concept or process.”

A fidelity of a prototype ranges from extremely low to extremely high.

It all depends on the context and the intention.

Engineers often make so-called functional prototypes. These typically look ugly, and focus on the functionality part. In these engineering prototypes, the primary goal is to prove that the functionality actually works.

In UX prototypes however, the functionality part is not the focus. The overall experience is.

What this means is that functionality part can be, or should be faked. But the experience part should be simulated as close as possible to the final product.

This includes emotional aspects of the product, such as feeling that you get from colors, textures, tactility, motion, sound, or even smells and tastes in some cases.

So the value of a prototype is to simulate the feeling of a final product as much as possible under given limitations and constrains.

Sometimes, you may only be able to make a wireframe prototype. Or even a rough paper prototype. Or a simple click-through prototype without any transitions. Or just an animation sequence without any interactivity.

Industrial designers always make physical mockups, low fidelity ones with clay or a 3D printer to test forms, then high-fidelity mockups at a mockup studio with real-looking material and finish.

Whatever those are, in whichever fidelity those may end up having, prototypes are going to be far more effective, valuable and meaningful especially for a group of people to get on the same page, compared to just images or text description.

UX designers should be smart and creative in how to fake and simulate the experience of a final product in the most effective way possible at any point in the process of a project.

From this perspective, UX designer is like a magician!

It’s actually quite fun when you successfully faked certain user experience of a product in front of your audience as if it’s working for real!

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#4 One small UX problem that annoys me in Google Calendar

As a UX designer, it’s important to cultivate your perspective to spot and find UX problems around you.

It does not have to be something big. It could be big, it could be small, it could be medium. It could be simple, it could be complex.

I use Google software suites including gmail, Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google docs, spreadsheets pretty much on a daily basis.

Overall it works well, but when you use it on a daily basis, some of small things start to get annoying.

In Google Calendar, when you create a new event, you click on a timeline where you want your event to be.

This brings up a popup window so that you can quickly type in an event title, then set other primary information such as time, guests, location and description, then click Save.

Time usually has a default value in 30 minute increment, such as 11:30am or 3:00pm based on where you click in the first place.

This is good, as you would typically set an event in 30 minute increment in most cases.

However, I quite often create an event with a start time that doesn’t fall into 30 minute increment, such as 11:10am, 11:15am, 3:20pm.

That’s when this small annoying problem occurs.

When I want to correct “11:30am” to “11:45am”, I tend to want to select and highlight just the “30” part and then type “45” to replace it,   because that’s the only part that I want to change.

But this method in Google Calendar doesn’t work!

As soon as you highlight just the “30” part and release a mouse or a trackpad, the highlighted area  automatically expands to include the entire text field “11:30 am”, which is against your original intention!

As a result, you have to type the entire “11:45am” in order to change it.

Once you do this, it sticks and it works.

This is a small thing from a larger scheme of things.

But it’s quite annoying, because I’m so used to editing text by just highlighting the portion that I want to change in all other places such as word processor, spreadsheets, mail apps, powerpoint and so on.

Also, the text highlight automatically expanding beyond what I initially selected feels forced.

Now I also found out that in Google Calendar, it works if you insert a text cursor between “30” and “am”, and enter delete key to delete “30” portion first, then type in “45”.

Sure, this is another typical way you edit text across all the different applications.

But with this way, you have to click more.

  1. click between “30” and “am” to insert a cursor
  2. Press delete key to delete “0”
  3. Press delete key again to delete “3”
  4. Enter “4”
  5. Enter “5”

And obviously, if you were to type the entire start time, it’s going to be:

  1. Enter  “1”
  2. Enter “1”
  3. Enter “:”
  4. Enter “4”
  5. Enter “5”
  6. Enter “a”
  7. Enter “m”

Compared to my originally intended way:

  1. highlight “30” with a mouse
  2. Enter “4” 
  3. Enter “5”

The fundamental problem here is that, Google Calendar works almost as expected in terms of how text input and editing should work for the most part, except this small flaw, which goes against what we have been trained to do when it comes to editing text in all other places.

It’s also interesting to note that this actually works in Google Map. 

In Google Map, when you set a driving direction for a specific date and time for an arrival or departure, you can actually highlight just the minutes section and replace it with what you type in. 

So it’s inconsistent between Google Calendar and Google Map.

As a customer, I appreciate all the Google cloud apps, and I respect the company.

I use many of Google cloud apps on a daily basis, and quite dependent on those.

For the most part, Google cloud apps work pretty well, and I respect how their design team has developed Material Design to where it is now.

But because of that, something like this bothers me, and hurts the overall user experience.

What do you think?

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