Friday, May 21, 2004

Why do so many software producers insist on Big Ass Splash Screens?

Lets face it, big splash screens are lame. Sure, it's nice to know an application is going to start. In this age of bloatware, this is likely an important feature. Given the user might not know they are going to wait 10 or more seconds, splashing them is likely a good idea;

the first time, that is.

After that, why bother?

We have all paid for expensive hardware with multi-tasking capabilities, yet many of the new tasks we start all want to own our desktop for a while. Why not, provide more reasonable application startup feedback instead of wasting a lot of collective time every day?

We should be giving feedback to the worst offenders, letting them know they are wasting our time. The amount of useful information provided via splash screens does not justify the time wasted dealing with them.

Many FS/OSS applications include a -nosplash option. This could be in the form of an actual command argument, or a little check box that says something like: "Don't show this again"

Don't take the top window focus, let the user bury, or work over the splash, if you are going to insist on a splash screen.

Consider other more creative launch feedback options, other than the splash screen. Users will appreciate it more than they know.


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