I bought my new tv this year and to do this i went to different showrooms, i was accompanied by a good friend "Sankar" along. I appreciate Sankar as he is good in making decisions and gives a good analysis. One thing that stroked me, was we see many tv and lcd and finally the one which came home was a 29" inch tv with a nice controls. The controls on the tv was clean, all the ports were behind the tv, so once i play dvd the wires do not drop in front of the screen.
“Keep it clean” is the key that makes a good UI
We almost rejected all the TV designs in which we had the dvd player port displayed in front, as it will look ugly when we have inserted the dvd cords in it. The idea is of hiding the complex controls behind. This concept i can recall is well used by successful companies like NOKIA in making cell phones. The key pad are hidden behind a slide or a flip in the mobile phones.
We should use this concept to the maximum in UI design in software's. Let me give some examples how we can do the same.
Some Tips are
1. Hide it: Hide the detail sections of the interface by using collapse and expand controls.
2. New window: Use another window to show the details, it is a common technique which is used. It is a gentle reminder
3. Tabs: Use tabs to hide different sections of the application
4. Progressive disclosure: Display the next section when it is necessary to display it, For example only show the dependable section when the user has already made a decision to use them. The below image can help in explaining the same thing.
"Let us make the interface clean", should be the main goal in all interface designs.