“Mastering Visible Wisdom: Graphic Design for Usable GUIs of Productivity Tools, Multimedia, and the Web” by Marcus, Armitage, Thompson, Tien and Frank

  • ©Aaron Marcus, John Armitage, Andrew Thompson, Pamela Tien, and Volker Frank



Entry Number: 22


    Mastering Visible Wisdom: Graphic Design for Usable GUIs of Productivity Tools, Multimedia, and the Web

Course Organizer(s):



    The tutorial will introduce terminology principles guidelines and heuristics for using information oriented systematic graphic design in graphical user interfaces (GUIs) especially for the design of icons dialogue boxes and control panels, metaphors mental models, and other navigational devices that often are not prescribed by window management systems.

    Participants will be exposed to a wide body of existing knowledge and practical advice that are immediately useful as well as potential research topics in user interface design. They will observe and analyze techniques for making displays more intelligible, functional, aesthetic, and marketable.

    Extensively illustrated lectures and demo excerpts will cover perceptual, conceptual, and communication issues in typography, symbol systems, color spatial composition, animation and sequencing, including the design of the following:


    Mental models and navigation

    Look and feel

    Proportion and composition grids

    Color selection Tables and forms

    Charts and diagrams

    Icons and cursors

    Windows and menus

    Dialogue boxes/control panels

    Visual semiotics conventions

    Style guides 

    Practical pen and paper design problems with critical review and commentary by the instructor will give participants experience designing components of graphical user interfaces such icons dialogue boxes, and metaphors.


Contents/Schedule PDF:

Contributed By:

    Mary Whitton


    Charles Babbage Institute Archives, University of Minnesota

Overview Page: