Home > Learning Portfolio 2 > Consistency Analysis (Item 1 / Q1 Summary)

Consistency Analysis (Item 1 / Q1 Summary)

Lidwell, Holden & Butler (2003) briefly explain the meaning behind the systems of consistency and how they’re connected with each other in similar ways. The four (4) systems or principles of consistency are; aesthetic, functional, internal and external.

Figure 1: Yellow Light: Knowing When to Go and When to Stop (Source: Cimarron Claims Service, Inc., 2012)

Each of the principles are defined, starting with aesthetic-consistency; it’s the appearance and style that delivers an emotional attachment with an individual’s product, for example, hood ornaments on a vehicle to identify if it’s popular or not (e.g., Mercedes-Benz). Same can be said about company logos. Functional-consistency is the “meaning and action” behind consistency, an example Lidwell, Holden & Butler use, is traffic lights, how the colour ‘yellow’ indicates to a vehicle to slow-down before the traffic light shows red, meaning to ‘stop’. Internal-consistency is consistency within a system, an example the authors use is signs within a park that a consistent with each other; same with golf-course signs, guiding the individual to each hole. Finally, external-consistency is the consistent with other element in the environment, for example, alarms bring warning but for each alarm, it has a different meaning, there’s a significant difference between the alarm sound from an ‘ambulance’ than a ‘police car’.

For a better demonstration of consistency, Simon (2010) uses the example of a feature film. Aesthetic consistency is used within the feature film project; the production costs and what brand of equipment/software will better suit making the project look fantastic. Simon goes on to explain “Having such a high grade product for the narrative driver is a blessing and a curse.” He continues to weigh the pros and cons. Pro: when having a successful budget to produce the film, it will show how good the quality of the brand the director is using is. Con: Using such brand may produce obstacles for the other platforms. Another fine example is from the Australian Government (2011) and their demonstration of consistent work habits; “Consistency regarding appropriate attitude, commitment, and performance at work is important in any workplace.” One (1) example of consistency within work is using a pin-up or whiteboard in the work area for all relevant work information.

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Commonwealth of Australia. (2011). Demonstrating consistent work habits. Retrieved from http://jobaccess.gov.au/Advice/JobRequirement/Pages/Demonstrating_consistent_.aspx

Lidwell, W., Holden, K., & Butler, J. (2003). Aesthetic-Usability Effect. In Universal Principles of Design. (p. 46).

Rossi, F., Villa-Vialaneix, N. (2011). Pattern Recognition Letters. Consistency of functional learning methods based on derivatives. (pp. 1197-1209).

Simon, J. (2010). Transmythology. Aesthetic Consistency Across Platforms. Retrieved from http://transmythology.com/2010/08/24/aesthetic-consistency-across-platforms/#comments

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