The Eight Golden Rules of Interface Design

published on 2024/01/09

I have often been asked to distill the vast corpus of user interface design into a few key principles. While I was reluctant to do this, it turned out to be a good exercise to write “Golden Rules,” that are applicable in most interactive systems. These principles, derived from experience and refined over three decades, require validation and tuning for specific design domains. No list such as this can be complete, but even the original list from 1985, has been well received as a useful guide to students and designers. Jakob Nielsen, Jeff Johnson, and others have expanded these rules and included their variations, which enriches the discussion. Each edition of the book produces some changes. This version is from Section 3.3.4 of the Sixth edition:

Ben Shneiderman