The Windows Phone devblog has a new post up on the development of the Metro design language. Most interesting is the array of signs for transportation – you can really see how clearly their style inspired Metro (I’m looking at that “baggage claim” sign in particular.)
The first interfaces were built on a need to communicate what they were. They were like a desk, but better. They were completely new, so an approach of direct representation was appropriate. Today itâ€™s not necessary, and yet, itâ€™s the path that most software interfaces seem to continue to follow. We donâ€™t need to make an eBook look like a book for people to understand how to use it. The book isnâ€™t the cover and binding, itâ€™s the images and the text that make the story. With an increasing amount of digital content, we donâ€™t have a good metaphor to render anymore – just information, text and images. What do you make a UI look like when itâ€™s just information? Thatâ€™s where we go next.
It also has some thoughts on the general evolution of GUIs, and the future of interfaces – though we can hope that this doesn’t mean Microsoft are pursuing those gimmicky transparent monitors so beloved of sci-fi. Text is one thing, but a screen displaying images and video ought to show what it’s showing, not what’s behind it…
Read the whole thing at the Windows Team Blog here.