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Designing menus for the Chinese population: horizontal or vertical?

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Abstract:

This research investigated the language differences between English and Chinese and the implication on the design of menu presentations for computer interfaces. Eighty Chinese subjects and twenty American subjects participated in this experiment. The results of this research indicated that the menu layout should be congruent with the language being used. Horizontal English menus result in better performance than vertical English menus. However, vertical Chinese menus result in better performance than horizontal Chinese menus. It is important to design menus based on the language being used rather than the linguistic traditions of the population using the interface. The effects of menu layout also depend on whether the search task items were presented in English or Chinese.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/014492999118887

Publication date: November 1, 1999

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