Introduction to Apple Human Interface Guidelines
Apple has the world’s most advanced operating system, Mac OS X, which combines a powerful core foundation with a compelling user interface called Aqua. With advanced features and an aesthetically refined use of color, transparency, and animation, Mac OS X makes computing even easier for new users, while providing the productivity that professional users have come to expect of the Macintosh. The user interface features, behaviors, and appearances deliver a well-organized and cohesive user experience available to all applications developed for Mac OS X.
These guidelines are designed to assist you in developing products that provide Mac OS X users with a consistent visual and behavioral experience across applications and the operating system. Following the guidelines is to your advantage because:
- Users will learn your application faster if the interface looks and behaves like applications they’re already familiar with.
- Users can accomplish their tasks quickly, because well-designed applications don’t get in the user’s way.
- Users with special needs will find your product more accessible.
- Your application will have the same modern, elegant appearance as other Mac OS X applications.
- Your application will be easier to document, because an intuitive interface and standard behaviors don’t require as much explanation.
- Customer support calls will be reduced (for the reasons cited above).
- Your application will be easier to localize, because Apple has worked through many localization issues in the Aqua design process.
- Media reviews of your product will be more positive; reviewers easily target software that doesn’t look or behave the way “true” Macintosh applications do.
The implementation of Apple’s human interface principles make the Macintosh what it is: intuitive, friendly, elegant, and powerful.