User interfaces

  • Created by: Jasmin
  • Created on: 15-05-13 16:12

User Interfaces

Features and uses of different types of user interface:

INTERFACE: where two things meet, where the human user meets or interacts with the ICT system e.g, user interface

Graphical user interfaces (GUI) and WIMP: (very popular as easy to use) (example: Windows)

  • Windows: screen is divided into areas called windows. Useful if need to work on several tasks.
  • Icons: small pictures used to represent commands, files or windows
  • Menus: allow a user to make selections from a list, can be pop up or pull down
  • Pointers: little arrow that appears when using Windows

Customising the user interface: Making changes

  • Ajusting window size - windows can be maximised, minimised and made in any size
  • Mouse settings - can change how the mouse buttons work, look and alter the speed of scroll wheel
  • Icon size - can have large, medium, classic (smallest) - can improve the use by children and people with poor eyesight
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  • Screen resolution - determines how sharp the icons appear on the screen
  • Desktop fonts - text and other items such as icons that appear on the screen can be made bigger and smaller
  • Colour - can change most of the colours used for desktop
  • Position - can alter position of elements on the screen such as windows and toolbars
  • Graphics - can change screensaver, background, customise icons
  • Contrast - determines difference between dark and light parts of screen
  • Volume - changed using control panel
  • Toolbars - can add those you require and use regularly
  • Set time and date - double click on time

Hyperlinks and hotspots

HYPERLINKS: allow you to jump from one part of a website to another. Links fundamental to Internet

HOTSPOTS: Image or piece of text used as a link on a webpage

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Menu and dialogue boxes

DIALOGUE BOX: window used with GUI that displays a message to teh user or requests that a user types in some information it needs

  • sometimes just simply informs user about something such as printer running out of paper, press OK to get rid of box

Drag and drop

  • allows users to click on items such as pictures, blocks of text, files and then drag them into new positions or folders


  • vertical bars see on right of screen that allow you to move forward and backward through document
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