Since mouse cursor is an essential element of user interaction, designers rarely risk to modify its presentation. Usability might keep you away from using experimental solutions in practice, however creative solutions and experiments are worth consideration and always nice to look at. In today’s part of our Monday Inspiration series we’d like to showcase some examples of unusual approaches used for design of… well, mouse cursors!
In this Flash-based monster-example1 cursor is a central element of the overall design. The mouse cursor is replaced with a (REALLY large) finger tip; the navigation is possible via pointing and clicking the… well, finger on the site section you’ve chosen. Extreme, but it works.
The idea is actually not new. Mathilde Aubier’s huge cursor is a little bit older, however the whole interaction is also done with a hand-drawn “hand”.
However, it can go even further. Usually if you visit a web site you are used to the fact that your mouse cursor has always the same speed when you move it both horizontally and vertically. Apparently, it doesn’t have to be like this. With Powercursor3 not the cursor is replaced or modified, but the background upon which the cursor is moved. The result is that the mouse cursor reacts to your movements according to some laws of physics.
The free Flash toolkit can apply stickiness, roughness, pressure, volume or mass to the areas of the user interfaces — holes, hills, slopes, roughs, walls, whirls, and more effects are possible. All of them change the behavior of the cursor accordingly. What do you think: can it be useful? E.g. if users want to move the cursor to some specific link it might be useful if is automatically drawn to the link itself as far as the cursor is in the neighbourhood of the link.
Paul Neave6 lets you use the cursor as your personal source of imagination. You can use your cursor as a pencil to draw beautiful figures by simply moving your mouse among the canvas. The results are not always beautiful, but the play of colors is outstanding.
The damn pencil on Leo Burnett’s web site9 can make you nervous. To navigate you need to point the mouse cursor to the sections of the site you’re interested in. We’ve showcased the site already10, however the “pencil” approach used on the site definitely deserves a place in this post as well.
- 1 http://www.jaarvandekleuter.be/
- 2 http://www.jaarvandekleuter.be/
- 3 http://www.powercursor.com/
- 4 http://www.powercursor.com/examples/
- 5 http://www.powercursor.com/
- 6 http://www.neave.com/imagination/
- 7 http://www.neave.com/imagination/
- 8 http://www.neave.com/imagination/
- 9 http://www.leoburnett.com/
- 10 https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2007/10/30/65-excellent-flash-designs/
- 11 http://www.leoburnett.com/
Hold on, Tiger! Thank you for reading the article. Did you know that we also publish printed books and run friendly conferences – crafted for pros like you? Like SmashingConf New York, on June 14–15, with smart design patterns and front-end techniques.