In April Paul Kedrosky wrote against the simplicity cult. When I named my biz-tech writings Simplicity Rules, I didn’t intend to join a cult. I thought I was being original, even. Now I realize there is an unmistakable collective consciousness pushing toward, among other things, white backgrounds and large fonts.
A friend of mine has an email signature with this Einstein quote: “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”
That’s the definition of simplicity that we members of the cult should follow. Kedrosky was really warning against being too simple.
Adaptive Path is a user experience firm whose work I admire, but I’ve never really agreed with one of their common examples. They citeUSDA’s Hay Net as “the best website I’ve ever seen.” The home page has two links: “Have hay” and “Need hay.”
Even if we assume this approach works for Hay Net, it certainly won’t work for most sites. In most cases, this is too simple.