SIGIA-L Mail Archives: Re: SIGIA-L: Role of color in presenting
Re: SIGIA-L: Role of color in presenting information
From: Ziya Oz (ZiyaOz_at_earthlink.net)
Date: Thu Jan 24 2002 - 14:47:05 EST
> Is there a different cognitive response to a long series of screens
> presented in black and white from the same information presented using a
> wider spectrum of colors?
I don't have anything to offer in the way of formal studies, but one
cautionary point, borne out of years of design. The human eye/mind has an
amazing ability to adjust and that may be totally involuntary.
One of the common mistakes some UI designers make is to present a design
arrangement, say, for a website, show it to a bunch of potential users and
gather reactions after a quick tour. As I have said here before, designing
for first time use/encounter is very different than for the 867th. That is,
as we continue to use a website or a book, a car, a room, etc., our brain
and senses subtly get adjusted to it. The visual experience of seeing, say,
a homepage for the very first time is different than using the site day in
and day out for a whole year. The designer should bear this in mind.
So if the presentations are long enough (and an hour certainly is :-),
whatever color scheme you might be using (within a reasonable range) will
most likely be 'accepted' by the audience after a dozen slides.
Surely, one can vary the color, weight and contrast of individual design
elements *within* a slide to increase audience retention, but if this is
repeated for the next 67 slides then the contrast effect is largely lost,
the mind/eye 'adjusts'.
One effective way to gently steer peoples' attention to particular objects
on an otherwise monochromatic or reduced-color-palette slide is to sparingly
use an arrow, a highlighted word, etc., with a color at the opposite end of
the spectrum from the predominant hues, like yellow for a blue base.
Of course, the best way to keep the attention of the audience is to have
indispensable content delivered by a dynamic speaker :-)
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: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:54:59 EST