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Am I a Web Usability Heretic?

Hey, it was just a blog post!

On Tuesday, Kent Clark posted about copywriting. He cautioned against following grammatical rules too religiously. His post reminded me of an article I wrote almost two years ago. Its theme was similar, but dealt with design rather than copywriting:

Website Usability... Without the Dogma

Before you brand me a usability heretic, know that almost three years ago, I presented the flipside of the argument. See my article on "why rules matter":

Usability Checklists: Just Dogma?

Does this make me a flip-flopper (which is even worse than a heretic)? Not really. It's easy enough to reconcile the two sides of this issue: To excel in any field – to truly stand out – you must break some rules. But to break the rules judiciously, you first have to understand them.

Comments (Comment Moderation is enabled. Your comment will not appear until approved.)
Not at all. Knowing when to break the rules is a vital step on the path to professional enlightenment, IMO :) It reminds me of something my grad. advisor said about statistics - he thought there were 3 levels of people:

(1) People who knew enough (about stats) to be dangerous
(2) People who knew the rules and lives by them, but got stuck in dogma
(3) People who understood the concepts so well that they knew when to break the rules

I think that applies to a lot of life, honestly, especially from a professional/career perspective.
# Posted By Dr. Pete | 6/18/09 9:29 AM
Going outside convention by breaking a few rules is fine as long as the message you are trying to convey isnt misinterpreted.
# Posted By Web Site Design Kent | 6/28/09 10:00 PM