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  1. Andrew
    10th March 2016 @ 9:38 pm

    when you stated a “much simpler” method to identify your car, and you enumerated “Select the make of your car / Select the colour of your car (if there are lots of cars of that make) / Select the model of your car (if there are lots of cars of that colour and make) / Select the photo of your car”, I question whether you have thought it through and truly think that would be easier?
    I can already see where this approach would fail because the council would not have updated the machine data with all the newest car/lorry/motorbike models, and the list itself would be extremely long and cumbersome…unless maybe you type in the model. Tourists in hire cars…just as inconvenient. Even then, your suggestion faces up to 3 additional lists of user interface interactions, each one of which could fail to identify your car (user error / software error / incomplete data), so I think typing in the license plate number is actually easier! Not that that is an elegant solution…
    If the license plate number is kept, then the system should pop up the picture as soon as the characters you type in uniquely identify the car (e.g. if you’re first one in, you’d only type the first letter)

    • Neil Turner
      11th March 2016 @ 12:56 pm

      Hi Andrew. Thanks for the comment. There are online services available (with APIs) that will tell you the make and model for a registration number (it’s what a lot of car insurance websites use) so data would not have to be kept up-to-date. Since the system knows which cars are in the car park it would also only need to show the makes present. People know the make and model of their car, they often don’t know their registration number so even if it’s a 3 step process, rather than 1, they are up to 3 very easy steps. I guess if people do know their registration number then that could also be an option for identifying the car. The key point I was trying to make in the article is that UX is about much more than simply thinking about the UI, it’s about the holistic user experience. The best UI in the world isn’t going to fix a broken process…

  2. Jay
    16th March 2016 @ 9:18 am

    Hi Neil,

    Wonderfully explained. I had been groping to get the difference for quite a long time, but your article has helped clear my vision.


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