The bathroom sink faucet handles were very cool -- just smooth steel cylinders sticking out, that you rotated.
Until I tried turning them with my now-soapy hands... and discovered that they were impossible to turn, because there was nothing to grab onto! His stylish cylinders turned out to be completely useless. Turns out knobby handles exist for a reason.
Designers will always find a way to justify their crap.
(And note that it has to be an actual "crap", not just stuff you personally don't like).
Overall I think that modern design has had a negative impact on kitchen and bathroom utilities: much of the functionality is lost with minimalistic design. There's also quite a lot of difference between countries and most bathroom faucets etc I have encountered in the US are horrible to use. It's also surprising why infrared activated faucets aren't more popular, they can't be that much more expensive for public restrooms (they are everywhere in the Nordics). I could go on forever about this subject as it's such an everyday thing affecting millions of people.
You can't dictate the amount of water - whether you want a trickle or a gush of water. You can't dictate if you just want to leave it on (for whatever reason) unless you leave your hands in that magical spot. O the magical spot, waving around your hands around the sink, feeling like a total idiot (not to mention learning the magical spot of different infrared faucets, since I'm seeing them in public restrooms and airports now), and if your hand leaves the beam for just a millisecond, the water shuts off, then you wave your soap covered hands around feeling like a bigger idiot.
Infrared is way too niche and 1 settings only.
Another point of horror is trends in design that cause some feature to just not exist anymore. Ten years ago I bought a combined microwave/kitchen fan, that had a great digital wheel for setting the time. It had the right size, and weight and feel, and it was really easy to set the timer because you developed muscle-memory really fast.
But a few years ago I moved, and had to buy a new microwave, and since a few years had passed, digital wheel were now "out" and almost impossible to find ovens that had them. Because suddenly the shitty +/- buttons where "in" again, and I was just out of luck.
I think the sad fact is that anything that adds mechanical parts also adds cost, and is therefore avoided now that the cost of electronics has dropped.
There's really no need to let the water run all the time, that's a waste.
Being too much of a maniac with such thing is no good. Especially not for your kids: an environment that is too clean will prevent them from developing proper defenses and as soon as they'll be outside, they'll get sick like sissies all the time :-/
That's why I prefaced with "If your goal is to get clean." Sometimes it's just to satisfy a taboo. That's okay.
If you want to avoid your kids getting sick, I can recommend getting them a flu vaccine. Probably safer than relying on a faucet containing the exact amount of virus you need to develop antibodies.
I've never met the "do not touch anything dirty after you washed your hands" and "close the faucet with a paper towel" (!) as a recommendation against spreading flu virus.
Especially if by "dirty thing" you mean the faucet handle.
Back a while ago I worked to pay for college. One of the several jobs I held was as CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant). Before they let you do the job there was a class you had to complete and one of the skills that you got tested on was washing your hands. Because, the first thing you did upon entering a room was to wash your hands and the last thing you did before leaving it was to wash your hands.
The process was as follows: set paper towel dispenser with 8-8 inches of paper towel so it is ready. turn on water to very hot. Wet hands and apply soap. Work soap into a lather for at least a minute and pay attention to make sure all surface areas of the hands and wrists are thoroughly scrubbed. Rinse under the hot water and tear off the paper towel. Use the paper towel to grab and dispense more paper towels for drying the hands. Once hands are dry, use the paper towels to turn off the faucet.
The keys to washing hands well seem to be related to water temperature and the length and vigorousness that is applied to the scrubbing. Once hands are in a 'clean' state the key to keeping them clean is to avoid contact with anything 'dirty'. I don't have a citation but if you really want something related to the measured effectiveness of hand washing techniques I am sure I could find some studies on pub med if you need them.
(danish, pdf) http://www.ssi.dk/Smitteberedskab/Infektionshygiejne/Hent%20...
Edit: That one is not specifically for flu, but too avoid infectious diarrhoea. We had a similar one at my job, specifically targeted against viral infections.
Depends on the ailment, Einstein. If its virus doesn't survive outside the body (which a lot of them do not), then "reducing the touching of things" does nothing.
And if the chances of catching it from a faucet are minuscule compared to someone having it breathing in the same room as you, then again, "reducing the touching of things" (especially when you already washed your hands) will gain you very little.
Ever heard of profiling and diminishing returns?
I had already turned on the faucet, gotten my hands wet, soaped up, and then when rinsing, realized it had gotten too hot and wanted to change the temperature so I could rinse without burning my hands... Man, people below are treating this like a brain-teaser!! ;) haha..
Edit: Since I'm getting downvoted, tell me that https://svbtle.com/ content isn't on the same plane and still readable? You can have everything on the same plane and with proper use of whitespace and good typography, it can be very readable.
And more than that, if you disagree, don't pretend to ask for a citation, just explain why you disagree. Most likely, even if you can't admit it, you'll find that you don't disagree, you are just misinterpreting.
In this case, the statement is
- an opinion based on experience
- obviously true
- coupled with an example anyways
In addition, the statement is relative, allowing for successful designs that are flat. So examples of readable flat designs are irrelevant to the truth of the statement.
You probably received down votes because "citation needed" is lazy, uninformative, uninteresting, and, in this case, wrong.
Sure, I could have provided this clarification earlier, but I have already conceded that the original comment was snarky and lacking in context for such a short statement.
And to your specific comments:
>Are you really asking for a citation to a controlled study that measures readability of a flat and not flat designs?
Are you suggesting that this isn't testable? I guarantee Microsoft and others have tested it. If the author isn't prepared to provide data, then it should be presented as an opinion.
"I believe that..."
> - obviously true
If it is obviously true, then there must be data to back it, right?
>In addition, the statement is relative, allowing for successful designs that are flat. So examples of readable flat designs are irrelevant to the truth of the statement.
My point was in regards to this particular statement, which, in my opinion, is stated as a truth:
>Put everything on the same plane, and you make it harder to focus on a specific section of the page.
I've agreed in later comments that you can take "content over chrome" too far in UI design, but this statement is NOT necessarily true in regards to content existing on the same plane. Putting everything on the same plane does not mean that it is harder to focus on a specific section of the page. Poorly designed websites are hard to read, regardless of what plane the content exists. I merely pointed out that there are examples that do not fit this viewpoint. In fact, I would argue that these examples tend to be the most readable designs I've seen, but this is an opinion that I have, so I have made sure to clarify it merely as that: an opinion.
As I've posted below, I am tired of people posting articles or blogs (and others upvoting these posts) that are not backed by any data.
If something is posted as an opinion, then I agree that it doesn't need a citation. Unfortunately, there is a reoccurring theme that I've seen become more and more prevalent in the tech community, a theme where ideas are pushed as truths when the author has done nothing to show that there is actual, credible, merit to the conclusions that have been drawn.
If these ideas were presented in any academic circle without evidence, they would be disregarded and laughed at. Yet here we are, discussing a post with a +200 upvote count, and the author has done little to prove his or her point, besides cherry pick examples that suit his or her conclusions. Content existing on another plane MAY improve readability, but I cannot say for certain. But I can point out that there are some very readable websites that have their content and navigation exist all one one page.
I think we can all agree that bad design leads to bad readability. And content existing on the same plane isn't inherently bad design. Proper use of whitespace and good typography can go a long way to improving readability and the UX. See Bing results http://www.bing.com/search?q=hello+world&go=&qs=n... (although I'm not a big fan of their social sidebar, but the results page and the top level navigation, is in my opinion, very usable)
So why should anyone accept this presentation of ideas that are not prefaced with the fact that they are an opinion and are not backed by any data? Why is it snarky to ask for evidence of these ideas, yet in academia it is normal and encouraged to be skeptical? If I presented an idea to my boss, his first question would be where is the data to support this? If I proposed an idea to my advisor, he would ask why do I believe this and what is the supporting evidence for this claim.
Why are these types of posts continually upvoted? Is it because we want agree with the author's idea? Is it because others have already upvoted this, so therefore the author is probably right? I honestly do not understand. It isn't like it is impossible to test this.
And "citation needed" is the Hacker News equivalent of YouTube comments: snarky, doesn't bring anything to the debate, and totally irrelevant.
My point is you are stating your opinion as if it is a truth, when it isn't.
Sure, citation needed is a little snarky, but I disagree that it doesn't bring anything to the debate and is irrelevant. Maybe you could have pointed to usability studies, so there would at least be some data to back up your claim.
Svtble works because it takes a minimalist's approach to all of that, throwing it all away into the bin. The content is readable because it's almost the only thing on the page. The font is large and the content is centered.
But would that work in the general case, as an approach for user interfaces and search engines and the modern day portal page and so on? I can't think of any examples there that would be considered "good design".
DF (http://daringfireball.net/) even has site index which is another no no from a flat deign perspective.
PS: Notice how both of these changes make the sight less user friendly?
Snarkily requesting evidence is not a bad quality in an online community—it's a vital one. Stating things as facts and refusing to even attempt to provide evidence is a bad quality.
If you claim that flat interfaces are more difficult to use, and someone else claims the opposite, how do you each attempt to justify your positions? Do you compete to see who can more quickly compare their opponents to YouTube commenters, or do you simply cite some evidence to corroborate your position?
"Citation needed" is never a counter-argument, but often stands in place of one. It is the rhetorical equivalent of burying your opponent in discovery: it is a challenge that consists solely of expecting someone else to do more work than they would like to.
If you have a question about something, ask. If you disagree with something, then make your argument. Never simply post "citation needed" and think that you have contributed anything to a discussion.
(Just FYI, it's also a "tell" -- some people will avoid engaging you if you post nothing more than "citation needed", just as some people avoid engaging others that end every sentence with "lol".)
If someone's going to make extraordinary claims, I'm going to request extraordinary evidence (or any evidence at all). It's even possible that I'm interested in the proposition and would like to pursue it further, but with the benefit of a bit of directed guidance from the author to a specific starting point. And if it's an absolute bullshit claim, well then, the onus is on the bullshitter to back themselves up (trivially done if they're not bullshitting), not on me to spend my time digging up countervailing evidence.
If you're actually interested in a claim and you need help finding further information about it, then say so. And if you think it's obvious bullshit, then say so by pointing out why.
"Citation needed" is a meme. First it was just a good practice on Wikipedia, then Randall Munroe made a comic with it (http://xkcd.com/285/), and then because lots of geeks like xkcd and it was political season the joke spread everywhere, and now, just like every other stupid meme, it is old and boring and misused and needs to be put out of its misery.
It's "lol" for pretentious people.
How about: I (honestly) don't believe "putting stuff on one plane makes them difficult to read", nor had I ever any trouble with understanding flat interfaces. So how can we reconcile our opinions? You assert a general statement, I have a counterexample (i.e. myself) that seems to go against it.
You can't assert general statements without supporting evidence and expect people to believe you just like that. You can either mark it as opinion ("I believe ..."), or expect to hear requests for citations.
Yes, "citation needed" is a meme. Yes, it came from xkcd, which is so popular among geeks not only because it's funny, but mostly because it's smart and accurate. It's not just another web comic out there.
> just like every other stupid meme, it is old and boring and misused and needs to be put out of its misery.
I'm sorry you say that. You see, you are in the Internet right now. It's an another world inside the real world. What you call "stupid", "old and boring and misused" memes are - for better or worse - the cultural and historical heritage of this place. They are equivalent to proverbs or adages of real world. You cannot get rid of them, they are product of culture.
 - and especially HN crowd; just search for "Relevant xkcd" or "Obligatory xkcd".
In the case of user interface analysis, I thought most of us agreed that real data is much more important than a single user's anecdote. If someone makes the anecdotal claim that since they dislike a certain UI feature it must perform worse in general, that person needs to present actual evidence. Unless I have done my own research, the only thing I can do is request evidence and remain skeptical until I see some. It is equally fallacious for me to counter with my own anecdotal evidence. Saying "citation needed" is precisely the appropriate response to baseless claims.
Citing a study is not a panacea for bad ideas, and lacking citations is not a death sentence for truth. Hacker News saw an article just the other day on how many conclusions drawn by science are incorrect. Don't be so eager to avoid thinking critically that the presence or absence of a citation dictates your response to an essay.
There is nothing to think about when there is no evidence, except how to gather or find reliable evidence. No amount of solitary mental rumination will yield a revelation about how effective certain UI features are with users. My own anecdotes are just as useless as my opponents'. This isn't laziness. I'm not being lazy when I ask accusers to provide some evidence that someone is in fact a witch.
And sure, the scientific community may be out of date or downright wrong, even half of the time. That's not an argument against the need for evidence. It's an argument for thoughtful analysis of evidence after it is presented, and more and better techniques for gathering evidence.
I did think about the statement, and I thought it was untrue. Then I asked for evidence to support the claim. Is that intellectually lazy, or is the original post intellectually lazy?
Regardless, 5-10 minutes after I posted "citation needed," I backed it up with examples, and followed up on subthreads with more points.
Don't you think it's boring? Don't you think there might be a better way of asking a question about a claim than merely throwing down "citation needed" after a comment, like an e-peen on the dinner table?
Now that I have replied with a comment lacking a single claim, preventing another stupid use of "citation needed", do you see how ridiculous and twisted that vapid phrase could make conversation in forums full of silly^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hlike this one? Should we all begin using Platonic dialogues just so that we can avoid having to bring a database of references along for any claim, lest we get molested yet again by people so intellectually lazy that they hilariously refer to themselves as "scientific skeptics" despite lacking the curiosity to research a claim on their own?
edit: Bah, I can't put quotes around "citation needed" in the search link above, and I don't feel like fixing the parsing for %codes tonight. You'll have to put the quotes in yourself to get the appropriate results.
Not really, and that's not the point of the statement. Until there is evidence, the only thing to discuss are your own predictions of what the evidence would show, or your own useless anecdotes. The point of the statement is to challenge the claimant to provide evidence, and as a side effect, to remind other readers to be skeptical of claims until they see evidence.
Sure, it might be boring, especially relative to baseless assertions that make a complex problem sound easy. Again, staving boredom is not the goal of most conversations—for that I turn to cinema or video games. Witch trials, while unscientific and horrifying, were certainly not boring.
Feel free to do that in your mind if you want to, this way it won't bother other people.
"citation needed" is an apt response if something is presented as fact, without backing it up it's not relevant for arguments, which are clearly presented as opinion.
It doesn't really matter how outlandish an opinion is, but if you make assertions and present them as fact, then you better be prepared to back them up with evidence.
How does a person draw a conclusion then without any evidence? Seems like confirmation bias to me.
>Get rid of all texture, and you might end up with cold, sterile designs that scare users away.
What's the point of making such statements that do not seem to be drawn from actual real world experience or data? Great, you have an opinion backed by what exactly? A personal emotional response to such designs? Do you actually avoid such designs? What is the value in making statements that have no backing data?
Did or does anyone say that Google's design might alienate users? It has always been one of the most sterile designs of any search engine or portal.
When people on the news make such statements, we laugh at them because we know they are just making these comments to get hits or views. They are trying to create controversy or lead people to agreeing with them when there is no evidence to back it up. It is analogous to fear mongering.
My biggest beef is people upvoting these types of posts. These posts are basically just piggybacking on general sentiments on Hacker News. Sure, at first glance, people tend to agree with them (see the +200 upvote count), and writing them may get the author some minor publicity, but when you attack them critically, you see they are not founded on any strong evidence. They are intellectually lazy posts.
And it isn't just you, it's all of the tech community that does it, and I am tired of it.
It's not that the article is wrong per se, it's that it states some fairly obvious ideas that are true in a broad sense (e.g. a user needs some visual guidance to make sense of a page; designing for looks at the expense of function is a Bad Thing) while being horridly weak in the details and specific examples.
Since there's little substance to the article it mainly serves as a kind of flag for taste preferences. People agree or disagree with the general sentiment, but when pressed to explain why most can't. I think this is why there was a such a reaction to "citation needed"; the annoying realization that one's opinions are merely anecdotal observations with no ready means of objective verification.
The question (perhaps rhetorically) was asked if posting "citation needed" ever lead to a worthwhile follow-up discussion. I'm thinking probably not.
Anecdotal observation: It's occurred to me that when people make obviously non-personal assertions, and they have some backing evidence, they tend to post it with their comment. If you don't see the citation it's likely because the poster hasn't any, and asking for it will be met with silence (or possibly derisive dismissal of the idea of being asked for evidence).
I attribute this to people asking for supporting links often enough that many posters think it's expected of them. I would like to think this is true.
If you said the world was flat, and someone asked for evidence, would you also ask that where is your evidence that you need evidence?
Thank you, thank you, thank you for giving me such a beautiful piece of clay to work with.
If I said, "the world is flat!", and it was around 400 BC, you, being an educated fellow, might say, "but what do you make of Pythagoras then?"
If I said, "the world is flat!", and it was circa 100 BC, you, being a clever and worldly fellow, might say, "but what do you make of Eratosthenes then?"
If I said, "the world is flat!", and it was the 1400s and you were friends with sailors or were yourself a sailor, you might say, "well, then why do the sails appear before the ship on the horizon?"
If I said, "the world is flat!" and it was the 1600s, you would think I was an idiot, because by now Magellan's voyage was well known and trade had begun to circle the globe, so you might just bite your thumb at me or ignore me.
But if I say, "the world is flat!" and you say, "citation needed", that is the stupidest possible "skeptical" response.
See, I'm not saying it's wrong to ask for a citation for a questionable claim. I'm saying that we should do better than that -- a request which you are arguing so vehemently against that, by now, if you actually were interested in whether or not "the design can be flat!", you could have come up with some examples to argue with.
Every time you, or anyone, says merely "citation needed" without further thought or consideration or argument or inquiry or contradictory evidence, what you are actually doing is holding an enormously loud sign which says, "I am not smart or curious enough to ask you a good question about this, but I am suspicious of it anyway."
And that's really lame.
If you are claiming something, than the burden is on you to provide us with evidence. Not on us.
And, in case of your example, "citation needed" is the most valid answer in XXI century, when your claim goes against all common scientific knowledge. Saying anything more is not intellectual laziness, it's a waste of energy. Burden of proof, again, lies on you.
That was a powerful argument there, I am in awe.
It is clearly a subjective, editorial piece. The infantile demands that every statement be prefaced by "In my opinion, " (where such is painfully obvious already) is a nonsensical tactic when someone simply disagrees with the subject matter.
My eyes keep getting distracted by the elements in the top left and right corner of the page.
With both of them, it isn't obvious what will happen if they are pressed. To me, it feels exactly what the author of this article was dismissing - design for design's sake, which make the site less usable than if they'd made it clear what they do.
The second problem is, that there's almost no visual distinction / contrast between the main segments of the page, which makes it harder to process mentally. It's like a file manager that shows the filesystem as a flat list of files instead of as a hierarchy of folders. My first impression of the new Reader or Gmail design was - messy bunch of black texts on white or almost-white background plus some almost invisible gray lines and a weird red button. It just seems messy and structureless.
Svbtle or HN are different, they have much simpler top level structure - just a menu and a list of items. BTW, svbtle's design is superior to Reader's on multiple level's.
This isn't about readability, but rather usability, so I find your examples poor. It's not just about typography and whitespace. Yes, they are simple and on the "same visual plane", but they follow design patterns that have existed on the web for many years: Navigation placement is on the top and left, links are either underlined or highlighted. On the other hand, svbtle is using bizarre navigation visual cues at the top which need some level of inspection or trust to use, and medium doesn't have a standard navigation at all. They are designing away elements of the webpage that people are familiar with.
A curve or spheroidal section is zen and minimal (1 stroke, 1 surface) A box with 5 sides, 4 corners, etc is not. There are zen circles http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ens%C5%8D, few to none zen squares.
I don't like flat sinks, but I can see how some people do. In Lebanon they generally build large flat sinks right into the countertop with the same marble. They are much larger than most American sectioned sinks and are good for certain things. They use a small squeegee to clean up after everything is done.
One day we'll look back on this design trend and laugh. Too bad it will take decades before these poorly designed items are replaced in homes and hotels.
I've used a flat kitchen sink, and it is f@cku=ing stupid.
A sink you need to wash/squeegee everytime you put something it it to wash?
Ha ha. No. Thanks.
Also, my kitchen sink is actually slightly slanted towards the sink hole.
In Sweden... You have a sink split in two sections, one that you filled with dishes+water, one for rinsing. My parents yhsed a dishwasher, and I later had a dishwasher as well.
In the UK, my sister uses a wash bucket. This is the only place I've seen this.
In Greece, dishwasher again. The sink is also split like in Sweden.
In Japan, washing dishes in a single large sink under running water.
* The UK also has those braindead hot and cold in separate faucets on each side of the sink. So when you wash your hands, either you're wasting a ton of water, you're using cold water, or you're scalding your hands. Will never understand that. And this is in a NEW apartment!
* Also, many brits I've known don't rinse their dishes... they let them dry with the soap on them. Also inexplicable.
I have two Belfast sinks in my house.
Newer models will use less water than the average person doing the same amount of dishes.
Older construction with porcelain or enameled sinks often have a single basin. Both this and the finish make a removable plastic washtub useful both to protect dishes and allow for rinsing whilst washing. Some "efficiency" apartments may also have smaller sinks for various reasons and only offer a single basin, again, a washtub can be helpful.
And yes, dishwashers are absolutely everywhere. Some don't have them of course, but they're standard fare in a huge number of places, even relatively cheap apartments.
Hadn't seen the lebanese style sinks before, but a quick google image search brought up this pic:
http://www.lebanon-hotels.com/book/images/accom/Faraya-villa... . Is that what you mean?
Interesting to hear another perspective.
Yes, that's exactly it. I find them pretty annoying because water and food debris builds up in the corners and it's hard to get it all down. Could actually be a feature and not a bug, — I've never seen a garbage disposal there, so you don't want all the food going right down the drain.
In my own apartment I have a directional, tilting head  attachment. It lets you point the water stream anywhere within the sink, and it has a secondary mode that turns the stream into a wider shower-style spray.
I have a flat sink in my bathroom. It's slighty sloped, but that doesn't help much against gunk collecting in the corners; it's awful precisely because the faucet doesn't swivel, and the faucet is one of those low, short bathroom types, so adding that same attachment would not help much.
> Get rid of all texture, and you might end up with cold, sterile designs that scare users away.
I'm on board with the usability argument, but I don't think that removing gradients and drop shadows necessarily results in designs that "scare users away." If anything, I think that abandoning realism allows you more freedom in making a warm & inviting designs (e.g. some downright unnatural combinations of pastels that would look too busy with those touches of realism).
Try using Office 2013. It's white and flat (even flatter in Win8 over Win7, you lose refrence to what the 'tools' part and the data part is. It is not inviting at all, unless you dig in to the options and try to put some slightly different colors/textures on it.
Getting off track, Apple design is simply not a monolithic, "zen" one-stroke entity. Apple design amalgamates understated hardware with loud, lickable user interfaces. To see my point, consider that Apple hardware is definitely NOT lickable, whereas software generally is. Historically this may be due to the dissonance between Forstall (software design) and Ive (engineering design).
(Feel free to shred me as I don't really know anything about Apple design.)
He didn't talk about gradients or drop shadows, he talked about textures. Wood grain is texture, the paper fibers in most book pages are texture, ... There is such a thing as too much texture, but there is also such a thing as not enough texture: when there's no texture, the work feels dead, like holding a single chord forever.
A flat sink is a flat sink because it is flat.
A flat design is a flat design because we call it "a flat design."
Skeuomorphism isn't realism - pixels are pixels not leather.
A gradient isn't a shadow.
The flat "add comment" button below does not cause me confusion.
Curving a surface doesn't necessarily make it handle liquid properly.
A poorly designed urinal will splatter if hung too low on the wall.
And speaking of urinals, rounded corners and drop shadows do not make the image of a button art, unless perhaps one hangs it on the wall.
People argue that "skeuomorphism" isn't the right term for slapping photo textures on everything. It might not be, but obviously "realism" is an even worse term. Leather, chrome, or paper background textures resemble nothing "real" about showing weather forecasts, emails, or search results.
(That isn't to say good design can't use photo textures, but even many of the better examples tend toward the overblown "realism" of CD-ROM software from twenty years ago.)
Also, the cobbler's kids have no shoes!
"Any blog post criticizing a design will in turn see its own design criticized."
And I just like stripes :)
If the sink has a single mixer tap, it's usually placed in the centre of the basin to give a neat symmetrical look. However, if the bathroom sink is fairly small, the tap protrudes forward and you find you can't lower your head to splash your face without accidentally bumping your head against the tap.
I prefer mixer taps that sit to the side of the basin or even mixer taps where you can swivel the arm left or right.
FYI: In my opinion, the author's $5.99 EBook on design is the best example of 'Flat Design' (I bought one). He claims to teach you to design a web app from scratch, but whereas the book is more of a walkthrough for a basic app than a 'how-to' (which is what he claims). Once you purchase his book, you realize it was a 'flat-design' and not a curvy one.
The author is an Apple fanboy himself, bashing out the new Windows Metro UI under the guise of a design article. Two years from now, I'd love to meet the author and see him claim the same thing. The author has a blind-folded belief that 'Apple knows what they're doing' or rather the 'Apple can do no wrong' mindset. I guess that's why you never saw any articles on Apple maps on his blog.
Coming back to the point, if Apple knows what they're doing, I bet Microsoft knows much better, because they are #2 in the OS arena WORLDWIDE (google for stats). So, this ideology that the Metro UI sucks is just time-limited. It's only a matter of time that people get accustomed to it and they will and MS knows that.
Where did I bash Windows RT? How am I an Apple fanboy when this article barely mentions Apple, and only to say designers are getting tired of Apple's aesthetic?
I'm a little bit sad for you. It seems you see all discourse through an "Apple vs XYZ" filter, and that must be extremely restrictive. Just think of all the information you're missing out on by reducing every single piece of information you come across to a binary dichotomy…
The reason is environmental: the sink is supposed to splash if you turn the water too high. It's intended to keep you from wasting water.
The disadvantage is that when filling a sink e.g. for shaving, the water pools at a line rather than a point. this is obviously not a problem in a restaurant.
See the third illustration "With a flat sink, you need more water to get the same depth" - an angled flat surface would be somewhere between the two in efficiency of water use.
1) they look impressive
2) They look like you spent money
3) The only task that they're actually used for is washing hands.
This is a different set of purposes from home use. Making your home bathroom look like a nightclub bathroom at the expense of usefulness is a particular kind of folly.
Very expensive custom work though. The fixtures alone are probably $2K. So yeah, I'll stay with my $50 Moen for awhile yet. :-)
In the future check out this extension as it allows you to hover over elements to quickly find the font: