Consistency q2

Examples of consistency in everyday life

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 12.53.52 PM.png

Foxtel Remote

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 1.02.36 PM.png

Samsung Remote

The tv remote control is a design that has been kept almost identical since the day it was born and this has allowed users to project knowledge of prior remotes to the latest designs. As you can see between two different brands of the same thing, they both have consistent designs. For example the universal on/off button ( a circle with a line through it) and the volume and channel buttons. These are kept consistent as it allows users to apply knowledge on how to use the remote. This is a good example of functional consistency in everyday life. An upgraded Foxtel or samsung remote will have internal, external and aesthetic consistency too, this is because when people are familiar with a product they are happier and more comfortable using it

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 1.11.04 PM

Harry Potter novels

Book series covers are an important aesthetic aspect to be very aware of as a writer. The cover of the book not only draws the reader in but also projects familiarity towards readers of a series for example Harry Potter. This series was widely loved and the original book covers were kept very consistent within their style. Note the consistent font and title placement as well as author font and placement. This is aesthetic consistency, and the fact that it creates emotional connection and recognition is important as we see this cover and expect a certain feel and standard for the book. This establishes its Harry Potter identity.

Screen Shot 2016-05-18 at 1.55.16 PM

Tumblr blog

Web design consistency is very important for usability and familiarity for viewers. When a website is faithful to consistent design principles, it makes it easier for people to find their way around the website and feel comfortable doing so. For example Tumblr’s consistent blue and white theme, and the font of the websites name not only sparks familiarity for the viewer but also makes navigation easier to do even for a first time user. The horizontal strip at the top which you navigate from remains consistent throughout the website therefore increasing usability and making it more comfortable for viewers.


Foxtel remote. (2016). Retrieved from

Harry Potter Novels,. (2012). Harry Potter Novels. Retrieved from

Lidwell, Holden, & Butler,. (2003). Aesthetic usability effect.

Samsung remote. (2016). Retrieved from

Tumblr image. (2016). Retrieved from


Consistency Q1


“Great design is invisible because it is consistent and familiar” (Toscano,2016)

This weeks topic post is on consistency.“Consistency in design is about making elements uniform – having them look and behave the same way.” (Spool, J. 2005). By making a design consistent, you are making it easier for the consumer/user to navigate the object or technology. That way we can easily transfer knowledge we have acquired from one design to another.”We are socialised to understand our experiences. Any intuitive design is simply a combination of signifiers and affordances we’ve come to understand from previous experiences.”(Toscano,2016).

There are four kinds of consistency, which are the following; Functional, internal, external and aesthetic.

“Functional consistency refers to consistency of meaning and action” ( Lidwell, et al. 2003) By leveraging peoples existing knowledge, functional consistency enables people to grasp quite quickly and efficiently, how to use the particular object or technology, otherwise known as learnability and usability. For example the consistent use of symbols on technology makes new devices easier to use!

Internal consistency refers to the consistency with other elements in the particular system. “internal consistency cultivates trust with people” ( Lidwell, et all. 2003) An example of this is park signs, we all know them and know what they mean! This is internal consistency in every day life.

External consistency refers to the degree in which something is consistent with regards to something other than itself,such as security are consistent across a floor, building, or residence. External consistency will increases the benefits of internal consistency across many independent systems (Lidwell, et all. 2003).  It should be noted that this is much more difficult to achieve as different systems rarely have the same design standards.

Basically internal is consistency within the product whilst external is with relation to another product. Jared Spool states that you must ask yourself, “Will the user’s current knowledge help them understand how to use what I’m designing?” (2005). This is an aspect that if considered and used correctly and efficiently can make a huge difference in your design and how people effectively use it.

Last but not least aesthetic consistency refers to consistency in appearance and style ( Lidwell, et all. 2003). A well known example of this would be a companies consistent colour and logo such as the Nike tick. Aesthetic consistency increases recognition, communicates membership between followers, and sets expectations with the brand or company. This means that you are familiar with a brand, you see that Nike tick and automatically assume and expect high quality and up to date style trend, or even a trend setting style! Once you expect these things from a brand you are more likely to carry on using it because you are comfortable with it.

Simply put, a designer should consider and include all four principals of consistency as it establishes an identity, makes us feel comfortable, makes recognition easier and simplify the process of learning to use or using the devices/system.


Levinson, D. & Schlatter, T. (2013). Visual usability. Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann Publishers is an imprint of Elsevier.

Lidwell, Holden, & Butler,. (2003). Aesthetic Usability effect.

Spool,. (2005). Consistency in Design is the Wrong Approach » UIE Brain Sparks. Retrieved 16 May 2016, from

Toscano, J. (2016). The value of consistent design – InVision Blog. InVision Blog. Retrieved 16 May 2016, from