Your Brain and Lion’s Scroll
Since upgrading to OS X Lion, I’ve been using their “reverse scroll” or whatever you want to call it. For those that don’t know what this is (and PC users), basically take the scroll wheel on your mouse and flip it around. This was done to have your mouse act more like a mobile device.
I’m all for change, and although I’m getting used to it, there are many times when I find myself going back to old habits. I’ll start off with why I’m sticking hard to this setting (which I can easily be turned off). It’s an advancement in UX and sooner or later, we will do away with the mouse altogether. I mean take a look at Star Trek, or any sci-fi movie, there isn’t a mouse to be found. But seriously, it’s just my point of view, it’s not because I’m an Apple fan or anything, it’s just how I see things.
With that being said, after about a week, I am now scrolling web pages, documents and alike without scrolling in the wrong direction first. But there are places where I find myself still doing it “backwards.” The drop-downs on forms, Tweetdeck columns, even this text area I’m writing this post in. I do find it extremely annoying and wanted to turn this setting off more than a few times now, but I don’t. I thought, “there’s got to be a reason why my brain isn’t adjusting to these UI elements but changed to others.” I think I’ve come up with it.
With explosion of the iPhone, iPad, Android and other various devices in the past few years, my brain has become accustomed to me looking at websites and writing documents on these devices. So the transition from just using my finger to scroll on the screen to scrolling on the mouse took some time, but came around fairly quickly. But Tweetdeck and code completion my brain has never seen in the reverse scroll world. It’s time to re-train the brain to perform tasks that it had been doing for the past 15-20 years. No easy feat that’s for sure, but I’m determined.
It’s funny that scrolling has become so second nature, that now I have to think about performing that task again. Brings me back to when I introduced the mouse and PC to various family members who would pick up the mouse and use it like a tv remote. It’s what our brains are accustom to. It will always default to that pathway that you formed the first time you did something. Breaking that pathway is hard, but can be done for sure. Let’s see how long it will take me before I stop scrolling up when I mean down on the DOB fields on a form.
I’m curious to hear your thoughts on this new take on scrolling, or even in general on trying to change your thinking on doing the simplest tasks. Feel free to comment below.