User 1 Design

HistoryCal is easy to install, you just have to download the installer for your operative system.

It’s difficult to understand what it really does, but once you have understood it you can tell how to enhance the interface.

I would like that the colors of HistoryCal’s icon won’t be lost, but this is not so important.

It would be important to have an online help tool to know what you have to choose inside the ‘input’ drop down list. Maybe you could write something like ‘Choose calendar type to convert’. I would like to have also some information about the different calendars included in the application, because I had to look at the Wikipedia first to understand it. It’s important because you have to know which calendar type we normally use and the difference between all the calendar types.

In the label ‘format’, I think it would be interesting to put a real example of the format you have chosen. Interfaces have to be easy to handle and remember (maybe you could put an example in a small font-type below the control).

In the label ‘text’: you could put Month or Weekday as the label title and not call it ‘text’.

And in the blank textbox you should have an online help tool or a real example of what you have to write there…

I find the script tool difficult for a non-expert user. Also there is no information about how to create it.

It would be useful to create a user’s guide, a step by step guide. From the installation process, to how you have to work with the application, a detailed explanation of the interface, and it could be helpful an online tutorial.

The user’s guide should be inside the ‘Help’ menu option, and a search option.

Also the FAQs could be part of the ‘Help’ menu option.

I forgot everything is in English language, it should be important to internationalize this application.

It should be interesting that everything in the interface should be in proportion; every control has to appear in an appropriate position inside the interface.

I don’t find the option ‘Full’ relevant.



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2 Responses to User 1 Design

  1. nickmat2 says:

    I like the background, but it does make some of the text difficult to read.

    I appreciate that if you just come across this app, its use is not obvious. The only documentation is on the website and it is far from complete. At the moment, the calendars are documented separately from the manual and in an over technical way. This is because one of the overall project goals is to provide a precise definition for all the calendars included.

    In the future, I will move these definitions into a developers area on the website, and put a more general and accessible description of them in the manual section. Also, I hope to convert the online manual into a help file format to include with the program.

    Note that not all schemes are in the day, month, year format and some calendars have elements that do not have numerical equivalent. For example, if you look at the English Regnal calendar scheme, there is no standardised numbering system, and different sources may use a different starting point. So the only way is to type the Monarchs (or Emperors or whatever) name. It may not be obvious what form the name takes, so being able to select it from a list is important. If you do want type the name, then having an abbreviation is useful and that is what you get if you untick the ‘Full’ option. It would be clearer to label this ‘Abbreviation’ and have it unticked by default, but ‘Full’ was shorter!

    A future version may want more than just Full and Abbreviation, for instance, the Islamic calendar may have the Arabic and the Latinised names. This is different from translations, as you may well want both available at the same time.

    There are several other problems with format descriptions. Sometimes schemes have odd quirks which result in a valid looking date being ambiguous (See “Some Surprises” on and the only way to disambiguate it is to add another element (such as the weekday or Old Style/New Style). This has to be added to the format, even though it is only needed for a few days in the entire scheme (the user should need to actually enter them). I think a section with examples could prove useful.


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