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i was recently logged in to a members-only web site (of which i'm a member) and noticed two buttons in the left navigation titled:

    • Administrator Options
    • Record Keeping Information

upon clicking on either one i was presented with a pop-up and this message:

Please note:
In order to speed up some of the lookup functions of the website, it was necessary to enable the Website Admin Button for all user screens. The Admin Button is only functional for users with Admin Rights. Clicking on the Admin Button will check if the user is a current admin and then go to the admin site if the user has rights to those pages.

huh?  okay, seriously...i'm not the best developer, but i do know there are two ways off the top of my head that i could think of solving this...1) caching and 2) role-based security (some type of bitmasking)

seriously folks, you shouldn't show features that aren't available to users...you are just inviting frustration.  this was a huge problem in sharepoint 2003 when basically every user could see all admin functionality and they wouldn't be alerted to what they couldn't do until they tried to complete the task (yes, you could walk through all steps in a wizard and then fail on the 'finish' button).

don't let systems rule your experience design...if it starts to, then something is wrong in my opinion.  systems are successful when users use them and when they aren't frustrated.  abstracting this type of stuff is key i think...

do you think this is what the designers had in mind?  design smart, develop smarter.

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i remembered watching the super-bowl via esp.com and even mentioned my experience in a previous post.  well, tonight espn proves to be a winner for me again.  while watching the and randy johnson stomp on colorado, i moved to espn.com and their gamecast view...it is incredible.  i didn't have a tv nearby, so i have no idea how out-of-sync it was, but the play-by-play visuals were great, down to the diamond being the shape of the field where they are playing...here's a shot:

when a ball is hit, they even have an animated baseball going in the direction of the play and everything...well done crew, well done.  i know where i'll be peripherally watching from now on...espn.com gamecast!

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i have to say, i'm really excited about this...for a while now i've been talking to customers and communities about wpf and expression blend.  i have to admit though, i'm not a designer, not even a good novice designer :-).  but i "get" expression blend -- the framework is much simpler for me to understand as a novice...and when i see experts open the tool i'm amazed at how quick they understand it and begin to create some compelling visuals/applications.

Expression Blend Traininganywhoo, there is a roadtrip happening...expression blend near you!  so check out the city list and register.  you'll learn some really helpful tips on getting onramped quickly for wpf and expression blend.  very cool stuff.  visit the expression 'designing experiences with expression blend' site for details on cities near you.