Using Kai’s post on Flikr as inspiration I’ve decided to work out some thoughts on use qualities in terms of  my chosen interation; Rdio.

Pliability:

In the “collection” part of the site, you can peruse your entire music collection. Because your collection can grow to a massive number, you can place filters to narrow things down. The visualizations of the music artists that you listen to the most add an element of pliability that is catered to your specific music tastes. You can move the bubbles around and manipulate the positions, much like physically moving a vinyl collection around a desk. The size of each bubble corresponds to the number of times you listen to that artist, the artists “grow” in importance to the individual’s music collection.
Fluency:
Regardless of the actions taken on the site, when it comes to the core feature – the music, there is an element of fluency. The music player is always present on the page and users can transition from song to song quickly and gracefully. The other activities on the site such as writing comments and reading reviews never disrupt the music.
Identity:
On the top navigation of the site you have all of the links to the most important features. In the same area the user’s name and picture is prominently displayed in large, bold letters. This gives the Rdio product a feel of identity, something that belongs to one individual.
Personal connectedness:
Rdio gives you the option to be very connected to a network, or not at all. You have three options; you, your network, and everyone. This empowers the user to connect and get in touch musically with friends or strangers. However, the level personal connectedness is limited to a tiny profile image, a name, and the musically-related actions that the user is performing. Users can also follow “influential” people who “know what’s cool first” much like a twitter user follows tweets.
Transparent:
The main operation for Rdio is playing music. It is afterall a music streaming service, with a few added social elements. I have yet to see any kind of activity that distracts from the main element – music. There are no pop-up modal windows or obfuscating frames that hide the music player. The frames in the site are cleverly built, they allow the user to continually manipulate the music player while interacting with the other social elements of the site.
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