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  1. Ram

    Nice article on a very delicate subject. Anyone who has REDESIGNED an interface knows how tough it is to find that balance between pissing off you existing users and making it easier for newbies.

    People take some time to get used to new interfaces.

    Give people a new complex interface. They will not even use it and will dismiss it as too complex.

    Take some features away from an existing complex interface and all the power users will start to complain, even if those are unwanted features.

    Give people a simple interface and start adding new features in a step by step manner, they will not even realize it.

    Moral of the story:
    1) People are cognitive misers. They are not gonna take the time to learn and use a new complex interface.
    2) People resist change and this resistance is proportional to the amount of change involved.

    Lessons to learn: Each interface requires a different approach. If I was building something from ground up, I will try to keep the interface as simple as possible and introduce complex features in a step by step manner to the users. On the other hand if I was redesigning an existing interface used by a lot of people I would think twice before removing a feature. It is very tough to find that delicate balance between complexity and simplicity when you are redesigning something.