How to Turn Feng-Shui Principles Into Web Design Science

By Alexandra Man July 13, 2011 Comments

If you thought that feng-shui was all about miniature water fountains and small sand gardens, prepare for the web 2.0 version. It is now possible to design a website in a way that will provide better “energy flow,” in this case by automatically analyzing people’s attention when viewing a website for the first time.

The Israeli startup Feng-GUI (graphics user interface) aims to optimize websites structure based on intuitive user attention when entering a website by simulating human vision during the first 5 seconds of exposure to the site visuals. The mechanism that Feng-GUI developed offers a semi heat-map that shows the “hot spots” of attraction and attention. According to that data, web designers can change certain features to maximize the exposure of the content in first glace (applies on ads as well.)

Feng-GUI

The algorithm that was developed can be a powerful substitute to other technologies such as mouse tracking or eye tracking. In the new method, focus groups are unnecessary and the whole process is much more precise.  After sending a screenshot of your website or ad, Feng-GUI can analyze it and send back its recommendations.

The different analyses available are heat maps, opacity maps, gaze plots and areas of interest. All the tools help to identify which areas are being perceived and which are being ignored or overlooked and can assist in comparing between different possible designs. Feng-GUI Automatic Thumbnail crops out less informative areas and keeps the image with your main subjects in it; it creates thumbnails which contains all of the objects that draw most attention.

Feng-GUI’s primary targets are web designers and advertisers. While the first and main product is attention and attraction analysis, a Feng-GUI dashboard is also available. It’s a pre-testing service that predicts performance and success of the design, using the analysis tools (levels of attention, effectiveness and placement and a breakdown of flow of attention.)

The charge varies from $25 (for 5 pictures) to $500 for 200 pictures and targeted to broad audiences, consultants, media researchers, ad agencies etc. A future feature will enable advertisers to get a dynamic service- changing ads when they show up next to an article in a news website, etc.

The service can analyze videos as well. With a more sophisticated algorithm it includes the analysis of flicker, direction and velocity of motion between frames.

Watch: Feng-Gui heatmap of Coca Cola GTA

This NoCamels article was first published as How to Turn Feng-Shui Principles Into Web Design Science on Technorati

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