beware! the dark side of information architecture!

o.k. i promised myself i wasn’t going to do any post-election commentary, but rules are for a breakin’.

i have absolutely no idea if this could confuse approximately 1,700 people, but when i saw the ‘confusing ballot’ story, i thought – “what a ‘strange-but-true’ example of information architecture gone bad.”

i thought i was exceedingly clever and insightful, but it would appear that megnut is on the same page [sic].

b.t.w. i’m betting that florida secretary of state katherine harris is real happy about the picture of her at 5a.m.

well, that’s just great. now i see that dan bricklin has a whole bit on ballot usability and it’s much better written than anything i could do here:

“I have heard from a variety of people about voting instrument confusion in many states, not just near West Palm Beach Florida. We know from lots of examples of usability studies that errors on tasks arising from “dumb mistakes” are very common, with rates of easily 5%, 10%, or more. Elections, even important ones like for President of the United States, are often decided by much slimmer margins than
that. In our ever-mobile world, thorough testing of ballot techniques and standardization may be called for if we are to believe that we truly choose our elected officials rather than flip a coin.”

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