Usability Testing?

Hey there - I just discovered Seamly and am really excited to use it. I’m a software developer and sewist, so this is an awesome intersection between these two worlds that I really enjoy. I hope to contribute to the project in the near future after I understand it a bit more.

As I was exploring the tool, I noticed minor usability issues, then I watched some videos of another sewist using Seamly (see below) and noticed other usability issues. It made me wonder, does Seamly do usability testing for its GUI and/or is interested in it? I’m not sure what the norm is for open source software in terms of this practice - it is a little time intensive, but in my limited experience, it’s been worth it.

Seamly2D Walkthrough - An introduction to Seamly2D & Resources - YouTube (usability issues mostly in video #6 with the printing UI).


The videos are likely outdated as I have been in process of overhauling the UI from the previous Valentina.

My suggestion would be to read through some of the issues or suggestions on the forums here or look at the issues on the Github repo (Issues · FashionFreedom/Seamly2D · GitHub) as you are sure to find many issues with the UI have already been identified and / or discussed.

Welcome, and please feel free to join in the discussions. :slight_smile:


Welcome @Adyst!

I’m afraid I don’t have anything to add to what Douglas said, besides that if I’d have beaten him to welcoming you, I’d have recommended him as the most likely to give you intelligent information, (since Susan is trying not to helicopter us.)

& If you actually have a system for UI testing, I think that would be a wonderful addition.



Oh yes, of course, I didn’t think about the age of the application in that video and the speed of updates. That’s great to hear.

@Pneumarian @Douglas thank you both for the welcome.

My favorite book regarding usability testing is Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug. It’s short, straightforward, and has a sample speaking script of a usability test in the back. It is marketed for web usability, but I found that it was generic enough to apply to general UI design.

For those that may be observing this convo and not know what usability testing is, it’s the practice of observing a user in real time using your application with limited direction from the developer. It uncovers non-intuitive UI, bugs, and in general provides a different perspective on how the application is designed.

When I describe it to people, they’re initially skeptical that it would be worth it, (it does sound a bit unimpressive) but when they actually try it, I’ve heard it described as “fascinating”. It’s not surprising - developers think about the application in a certain way, are deep in a certain design, and we don’t often see the application being used in a real world context.

Once I get my bearings, I would love to try a demo usability test, maybe with developers as guinea pigs.


Just to give you some of my background… my first computer “user interface” was an IBM punch card machine in the 70’s. :slight_smile: I’ve gone through all the CPM, MS-Dos, Atari, Amstrad, Commodore/ Amiga, umpteen PC’s from Windoze 1.0… to present day. I’m pretty good at just jumping in with any new program and can figure out the basics pretty quick. That is when a program follows standard design principles. I will admit that when I first opened Valentina about 3 years ago, I was like “now what?”. Once I watched some videos I got past the now what… then came the “what’s a passmark?”… and so on. That’s when I started to work on my own fork to correct many of the non standard gui and terminology issues. Recently I decided to bring some of what I did in my fork to Seamly2D. So yes… I agree the ui needs work. Hopefully we’re slowly get somewhere.

You may like read some of recent discussion we had about “Crafting the First Mile”… which led into some ideas to implement to make the app easier to start using for new users.


My 1st was with punchcards on a Univac 1100! The team here has seen a lot, and @Adyst your contributions are most welcome.

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