Mark-as-Spam buttons have been a standard feature in webmail sites for quite a while now - but what to do when the sender is someone you know, but the message is clearly spam? The old answer: write to your friend, or maybe call them (because their email is clearly on the fritz), recommend that they go through the painstaking process of verifying identity, changing passwords, apologizing to friends, and so on. The Hotmail team thinks (and I agree) that this event instead needs its own button: "My friend's been hacked!" This case meets the requirements to be button-worthy: it accomplishes a set of functions that'd be inconvenient to perform separately; it presents the button to those who are in the best position to judge whether it needs to be pressed; it's clear what the button will do, and when it should be pressed; it even adds to the internal "smarts" of the webmail system, just like spam buttons. Overall, a very fine addition - welcome aboard, friend's-been-hacked button!
Infographics can be beautiful things: rich in information, showing layers of illuminating data in logical and attractive ways. (Charles Minard's graphic of Napoleon's 1812 Russia campaign can be pored over for a good 45 minutes.) And then there's the drivel that sometimes tries to pass as an infographic. Listen up, Newsweek: this is not an infographic. It's asinine, confusing, and a waste of both printed and digital space. Why are those flags pointing to different parts of a giant scoop of ice cream? Couldn't you at least put these locations on a map or something? Shape up, or I'm not renewing my subscription - you're on thin ice here...
Yep, "clever" just about sums up Catherine Werdel's concept for a slotted toothbrush that helps you get all the toothpaste out of the tube. It's immediately intuitive and brings a smile to your face - but also adds a step or two, of squeezing and then removing the toothbrush to receive the toothpaste. A dedicated squeezer might be even more convenient!
Laptop trackpads have earned their place among the fundamental input devices of computing, along with the keyboard and mouse - but that doesn't mean they can't learn a few new tricks. Well, Acer came up with one for their Aspire Ethos laptop: a trackpad that pops out and becomes a media remote. Clever, useful, and immediately intuitive, this is just the thing I need to keep the stream of Modern Family episodes coming via Hulu when the laptop is wired to the home theater!
Well, it's not exactly an unpressable button, but it's a 50/50 chance what each of those door buttons will actually do! Looks like the text and the icons have been swapped - and there's no logic saying that one "should" be on the right and the other on the left. Oh well - the same thing happened with the up/down indicator lights on the elevator in my workplace: the module was symmetrical, and simply installed upside down. Anyway, thanks to my reader in the 803 area code for sending this in!