Wrong Tool For the Job

So many useless options, so little time AOL-Time/Warner (NullSoft? Netsacpe? AOL?) has got to get its act together. I mean how do you lose $99 billion in one year? Although that has nothing to do with the WinAmp Media Player, we like to kick these guys when they're down. After all, between Netscape, AOL Instant Messenger, AOL itself and WinAmp; these guys have brought nothing but bad design to the computer world. Why the hell would one use a slider to select an icon? For that matter, why should one ever want to change the icon for a file anyway? Don't programmers have anything better to do? Personally, I want to be able to use a friend's computer and recognize which pictures mean what. Anyway, the purpose of a slider bar is for adjusting analog values like volume, percentages or brightness. Ok, these examples might not be truly analog but that's the impression we wish to give to the user. An icon is a conceptually discrete selection and would be better served with a combo-box or a set of radio buttons.

Given the sheer number of options in this dialog box, it is unsurprising that the designers were unable to come up with distinct mnemonics for all of them. Not only are several valid mnemonics opportunities passed up, however. but one is used twice. These sorts of problem crop up all over the application.


How many icons should I add to my desktop?
I think I'll add one of each icon to my desktop for maximum confusion.