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Edward Tufte on the iPhone Interface

The iPhone interface offers advances in information resolution. It “elegantly solves the design problem of small screens by greatly intensifying the information resolution of each displayed page. Small screens, as on traditional cell phones, show very little information per screen, which in turn leads to deep hierarchies of stacked-up thin information – too often leaving users with “Where am I?” puzzles.”

Edward Tufte walks us through how the iPhone accomplishes this in his post and video published earlier this year titled “iPhone Interface Design”.

His basic message is that the Apple iPhone has great value as an interface because of the higher information resolution available to the end user. Computer information debris reduces information visualization resolution and steals content space away from the user. Edward Tufte lauds Apple’s approach of having the controls go away leaving the user to control the information right off the page by tapping and swiping.

When you visit the page, you’ll find that a large video will load. It’s worth the wait. Here are some screen captures from the video.

This screenshot shows an image on Edward Tufte’s iPhone gallery. It is an image with sparklines. Click on the image to enlarge it for more detail.

Edward Tufte shows an image of sparkline charts on his iPhone

Edward Tufte shows an image of sparkline charts on his iPhone

In this screen capture, you can see Edward Tufte’s finger as he swipes the screen to move the image.

Edward Tufte moves the iphone image of sparklines

Edward Tufte moves the iphone image of sparklines

Here is the stock market page from the iPhone. Note the level of the Dow Jones!

Stock Market Page on the Apple iPhone

Stock Market Page on the Apple iPhone

Here is an updated screenshot from the Dashboard Spy’s iPhone:

Screenshot from The Dashboard Spy's iPhone

Screenshot from The Dashboard Spy’s iPhone

Don’t be fooled by all the green. Stocks are bouncing off their lows from the other day when the Dow Jones went below 8000!

For more information visit Edward Tufte on the iPhone Interface

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