some comments on Raskin's humane interface summary (i have got the book - but this is a much easier place to start)
quote from:Summary of The Humane Interface "The twin problems of navigation and limited display size can both be ameliorated by using a video camera paradigm, where the user can zoom in and out and pan horizontally and vertically over a universe of objects. Objects (documents, pictures, games, anything that has a visual representation) can be grouped into visible clumps and clusters, which can be marked with colors and shapes, and left in locations that are in themselves memorable (the address book is in the upper left corner of the world). Zooming out from your computer can give you a view of your local network, and going still farther, the web comes into view, as organized by a universe vendor (comparable to today’s portal vendors)."
The problem with this can be seen very clearly on the itch site and on a crowded desktop
- the reason for this is two fold (at least), first, to get a complete picture of even a reletatively small set of objects requires one to zoom out too far to be able to see clearly what the groups/objects are and secondly, this still relies on the user to determine where and how to sort their information (as they do with traditional file systems). The notion (mentioned by various people - inlcuding me) of tagging files with context relevant icons and sorting into context related groupings would help - but the ability of software to identify accurately the context related objects (i.e. which relate to the same project or activity) is questionable....