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I didn’t get this… please elaborate

Before even digital technology was the substrate, there were ‘electronic’ systems that implemented the digital approach …

To set a time / alarm, there are four fields for a clock displaying the value in HH:MM format.

You select the value for each field from ‘0’ to ‘9’ individually.

This is the most efficient way to enter the values and thus the form of the design (four individual fields, with the least number of values necessary for each) meets the requirements of the intended function (entering the time value accurately) with the least number of steps necessary to do so.

In the worst case scenario, where all four values are 9 away from what you need them to be, you have to cycle through 4 x 9 = 36 values — with bi-directional selection the maximum is 4 x 5 = 20 values.

Compare this with Apple’s restyling of the input method on the iPhone/iPad, where you have two fields with values ranging from ‘00’ to ‘59’.

From any given value for each of those fields, instead of 9, you potentially have to cycle through 29 values to reach the desired one, so you potentially have to cycle through 2 x 29 = 58 values to set the time … even with bi-directional selection.

The effort required to set the time value is 161% that of the standard 4-field design — 290% with bi-directional selection.

It’s inefficient.

Like redesigning the wheel as an oval instead of a circle, it might look cute and stylish, but from a Design perspective it’s a fail: it’s an exercise in Style over substance, not evidence of a flair for Design — in fact, it’s evidence of a complete failure in understanding the fundamental tenets of Design.

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