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KISS your dashboards!

by Molly Brien

July 6, 2011

By Molly Folan, Conference Producer

Ask anyone who knows anything about dashboard design, and they’ll tell you one thing: K-I-S-S: Keep It Simple, Stupid.

Obtaining simplicity in dashboards is similar to obtaining it in life. Think about it. It requires a change in the way you view the world — a new perspective on life. You’re forced to evaluate every element of your lifestyle and determine what’s necessary and what’s not. Same goes for dashboards. The best dashboard designs are simple because they contain no unnecessary elements, and the necessary elements in a way that makes sense. When a design doesn’t quite hit the mark, designers often add elements when they really should remove unnecessary ones. Sometimes, it’s actually better to start over instead of trying to fix the design. All the time, it’s tricky to determine which approach is best.

We know people don't have time to learn things that are too complicated. This is why we’ve recruited some of the biggest names in the world of Xcelsius — Mico Yuk, Dr. Bjarne Berg, Emily Mui, and Chris Hickman — for a brand new Xcelsius dashboards bootcamp, scheduled to debut September 19-21 in Chicago. 

I spent months researching the who, what, where, and why of Xcelsius. I dug through every blog, article, and forum I could find and picked the brain of every analyst, consultant, and customer that picked up the phone. If I learned one thing, it’s this: Way too many dashboards are too complicated. And from what I understand, often fail as a direct result of that. A lot of dashboards want to do a million different things at once. But that’s a bad idea.

So, for such a simple thing, it’s not that simple, is it? 

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