KC has been taking care of articles for the last two weeks, but I’m back now (whilst he is on vacation) with a comic and article responding to the somewhat misguided call to arms put forward by Frans English. He has set out to improve awareness of usability issues within the OSS community with an essay entitled:
Open source usability is a technical problem we can solve on our own.
This is clearly an essay written by developers, for developers and it is rife with severe misunderstandings about the nature of both usability and design. While his goal of raising usability awareness in OSS is admirable, his message is filled with a deep distrust of established usability techniques and the professionals who practice them. Worse yet, there is an underlying tone that usability work is trivial to learn since it is less technical than code.