A Checklist of Common GUI Errors Found in Windows, Child Windows, and Dialog Boxes
By: Daniel J. Mosley
-Assure that the start-up icon for the application under consideration is unique from all other current applications.
Assure the presence of a control menu in each window and dialog box.
Assure the correctness of the Multiple Document Interface (MDI) of each window - Only the parent window should be modal (All child windows should be presented within the confines of the parent window).
Assure that all windows have a consistent look and feel.
Assure that all dialog boxes have a consistent look and feel.
Assure that the child widows can be cascaded or tiled within the parent window.
Assure that icons which represent minimized child windows can be arranged within the parent window.
Assure the existence of the "File" menu.
Assure the existence of the "Help" menu.
Assure the existence of a "Window" Menu.
Assure the existence and proper location of any other menus which are logically required by the application.
Assure that the proper commands and options are in each menu.
Assure that all buttons on all tool bars have a corresponding menu commands.
Assure that each menu command has an alternative(hot-key) key sequence which will invoke it where appropriate.
In "tabbed" dialog boxes, assure that the tab names are not abbreviations.
In "tabbed" dialog boxes, assure that the tabs can be accessed via appropriate hot key combinations.
In "tabbed" dialoged boxes, assure that duplicate hot keys do not exist
Assure that tabs are placed horizontally across the top (avoid placing tabs vertically on the sides as this makes the names hard to read).
Assure the proper usage of the escape key (which is to roll back any changes that have been made).
Assure that the cancel button functions the same as the escape key.
Assure that the Cancel button becomes a Close button when changes have be made that cannot be rolled back.
Assure that only command buttons which are used by a particular window, or in a particular dialog box, are present.
When a command button is used sometimes and not at other times, assure that it is grayed out when it should not be used.
Assure that OK and Cancel buttons are grouped separately from other command buttons.
Assure that command button names are not abbreviations.
Assure that command button names are not technical labels, but rather are names meaningful to system users.
Assure that command buttons are all of similar size and shape.
Assure that each command button can be accessed via a hot key combination (except the OK and CANCEL buttons which do not normally have hot keys).
Assure that command buttons in the same window/dialog box do not have duplicate hot keys.
Assure that each window/dialog box has a clearly marked default value (command button, or other object) which is invoked when the Enter key is pressed.
Assure that focus is set to an object which makes sense according to the function of the window/dialog box.
Assure that option button (AKA radio button) names are not abbreviations.
Assure that option button names are not technical labels, but rather are names meaningful to system users.
If hot keys are used to access option buttons, assure that duplicate hot keys do not exist in the same window/dialog box.
Assure that option box names are not abbreviations.
Assure that option box names are not technical labels, but rather are names meaningful to system users.
If hot keys are used to access option boxes, assure that duplicate hot keys do not exist in the same window/dialog box.
Assure that option boxes, option buttons, and command buttons are logically grouped together in clearly demarcated areas.
Assure that each demarcated area has a meaningful name that is not an abbreviation.
Assure that the Tab key sequence which traverses the defined areas does so in a logical way.
Assure that the parent window has a status bar.
Assure that all user-related system messages are presented via the status bar.
Assure consistency of mouse actions across windows.
Assure that the color red is not used to highlight active GUI objects (many individuals are red-green color blind).
Assure that the user will have control of the desktop with respect to general color and highlighting (the application should not dictate the desktop background characteristics).
Assure that the GUI does not have a cluttered appearance (GUIs should not be designed to look like a mainframe character user interfaces (CUIs) when replacing such data entry/retrieval screens)
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