I attended the session on Drupal 7 Usability at DrupalCamp Colorado. Last year I attended the same session on Drupal 6 and was made painfully aware of the shortcomings of the stock Drupal UI in D6. Watching the testers struggle incited nervous laughter. We needed to do better as a community. Drupal 7, without a doubt, has great improvements over previous versions of the software.
However, all was not grand.
All was not good. I sent out a few tweets as the presentation ensued.
Creech Matthew Saunders
This report was done on the latest usability testing from Baltimore this past week. I don’t think that there were any real surprises, but it sure underlined how much work we have to do to make Drupal more intuitive and accessible for the average user. These are my notes from that presentation.
“I won't release Drupal 7 until I crossed off at least 90% of the problems they identified” – Dries
Usability Testing and Drupal 6
"Yowza!" was the big sound bite I took away from the Usability Testing session. "I didn't expect to feel so stupid. I don't like feeling stupid" "I need a tutorial!" "I already lost the page I just created". Drupal is harder than it looks, and we in the community tend to overlook that. Things that take us 30 seconds can take 30 minutes or more for a new user.
I popped over to Twitter a few minutes ago to do a little more exploration. I was going to set up my cell phone to handle sending and recieving messages to the service. I was greeted with no CSS.
I think I'll wait to navigate the site. However, this is an interesting illustration of HOW important layout/graphics are to usability. All the functionality of Twitter sits intact, but the page has become difficult to use because we can't see where the elements lie easily.