Getting [On | Old]

Dan Hon ponders an increasingly important question:

I gave in and upped the font size on on my Mac because I’m now not too precious to admit that I need to be able to read things. Which got me thinking: if we’ve got Dark Mode, then what does Old Mode for Internet Olds look like?

Potential Old Modes:

  • text-only sports websites because Old Internet People remember when stuff loaded quickly and was just text and then evergreen example
  • Make This Like A Chronological Feed For Me Mode for Old Internets who keep going on about some “Google Reader” and “RSS” and can’t handle intrinsically algorithmic/recommendation-powered feeds like TikTok
  • So, you know, not just skins that make things look old, but skins that are interfaces on top of modern services that behave in certain kinds of old. Or interface aesthetics that work for Old People.

I realise this is really just a subset of the last item, but it's an important one. Letting users control your software using keyboard shortcuts1 is a big one, for me.

  1. If your software has drop-down menus, have it display those shortcuts on-screen, right next to the menu items.