armchair internet usage research, volume 1

I’ve read statements on web design & usability blogs about users who always use Google to locate sites that they may visit frequently, or even daily. Usually, the reasons I’ve seen given to explain this behavior are that the user doesn’t know about certain browser features (bookmarks, history, etc.) or that they simply can’t be bothered to use those features.

So, tonight I was surprised to see my darling wife—one of the few people I know who maintains and really uses a large, well-organized library of bookmarks—using Google to get to a cutesy little Flash game that I’ve seen her playing at least a dozen times before.

Why hasn’t she bookmarked it, then? So she won’t go there as often, she explains—she feels like it’s a time-waster and doesn’t want to get sucked in more than a couple times a week. She’s actually forced herself not to memorize the URL, so she has to remember the name and search for it every time. The slight inconvenience actually keeps the number of visits down in her comfort zone.

I’m far too sleepy to draw any major conclusions from this, and I’m not sure there are any, but I felt compelled to write it down, so maybe it’ll come in handy later.

folks before you had this to say:

  1. Cheris

    Your conclusion is that I’m a genius. GENIUS I tell you.

  2. Apa

    I have “large well organized bookmarks” that I use all the time (I know this because my “Genius” daughter got me organized initially long ago). However, the reason I use Google from time to time goes like this: I’m searching for something, find it, then think, “I’m never going back there again”, so I don’t bookmark it. Then what happens? I need to go back there a week later. Repeat the above. Hmmm, other issues at work here?

  3. Cheris

    I did? Hmmm… apparently I’m a genius with no memory. Figures.

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