Here is a nice out-of-box experience from Netgear.
Some nice feedforward on what to do makes it hard to go wrong. This is common in product design, where designers apply the poka-yoke principle to ensure that things cannot be operated incorrectly.
…the term can refer to any behavior-shaping constraint designed into a product to prevent incorrect operation by the user…Examples of poka-yoke in consumer products include:
- 3.5″ floppy disks: the top-right corner is shaped in a certain way so that the disk cannot be inserted upside-down.
- Microwave ovens: a door switch automatically disconnects the activation button when the door of the oven is opened. As a result, it is impossible to cook anything in a microwave oven unless the door (which contains a Faraday cage to block microwaves) is fully closed.
What does poka-yoke look like in software? Certainly error messages and disabled buttons are two examples. But what could we do to provide more feedforward? When we open a web app for the first time and are faced with a potentially complex user interface, what should we be doing first? Next?