Brian Goldstein Critique
Website Critique: http://www.agtrader.org
agtrader.org shows a fairly consistent attitude with its colors and fonts. All text generally appears as either blue or green of all the same font and relatively close sizes. While text is easily readable and uniform it is also fairly bland and appears on first glance to be a placeholder website for a domain name that hasn't been purchased yet. One major inconsistency is that on the homepage it shows detailed information on the items but, when you search for something specific you have to click “More Info” to get that information on each listing individually. This dramatically delays users in finding the information they seek.
agtrader, does a fairly good job at keeping things universal, at least for the user base that the website is intended for, although some text is a bit small for potentially older users of the service. While there is a “Advanced Search” function, it offers nothing beyond the regular search function, making me question why there is a link to it in the first place. Services on agtrader are generally fast and self explanatory such that novices and experts would not have much difficulty at all understanding and using the service.
agtrader does a fine job explicitly showing changes the user has made to their searches and when they have performed actions.
Dialogs To Yield Closure
Since the website focuses more on networking and simply allowing users to connect to each other to make the deals themselves there isn't much of a requirement for this. The only aspect that would explicitly give you closure would be sending the email to the farmer and registration. Registration provided a dialog and email, while not tested, will have no issues if a confirmation dialog is provided.
Registration is the only place where error prevention seems to be an issue. While it did tell me exactly what was wrong when I put in incorrect data for my email, phone number and zip code, it could have done a better job in recognition of valid cities and counties as I can put in numbers for both of those and it will be accepted. It could also use a second address line for people who live in apartments so they do not have to type beyond what the box shows. The first two times I attempted registration, it failed simply saying there was an error and that it was logged. After finally registering, the email I received told me I could click on the “My Account” icon on the top of any page or click a particular link. The icon it refers to is actually text and on the lower left portion of any page, and the link simply goes to the home page.
Easy Reversal of Actions
The back button on your browser essentially reverses anything you have done on agtrader and therefore isn't much of an issue.
Internal Locus of Control
agtader does a fairly decent job of keeping the user in charge of the interface, and finding information is fairly simple. The only hindrance is the extra clicks needed to get more information and after that, the contact information. It doesn't particularly make it difficult, just more annoying.
Short-Term Memory Load
agtrader, I would say excels at being simple and concise. I can find very few issues where the user might feel overloaded or confused. Although the homepage has a lot of things thrown together, they are all organized into their own pages which can be accessed with the “Navigate” section on the left side of the page.