Looking for Affordances in TweetDeck

I almost posted a TweetDeck support ticket when I realized the interface was just hiding what I needed. My Direct Messages (DM) column had disappeared. Last night I tried using the ‘Add Column’ feature to get it back, but I did not see an option to do so. Today a new version was released: I installed it, but still no DM column. I tried the ‘Add Column’ again, with no luck, so off I went to search for a solution. Nada. Here’s what I was seeing:
screen shot of add column dialog box

  1. This wasn’t part of my problem, but it would be helpful to have some contrast between the text and the background. Can you see where it says ‘Add Column?’ It’s very difficult to read.
  2. It appears that the only kind of column you can add is a search column.

screen shot of trash icon

  1. I saw some searches I didn’t remember, but it wasn’t until running the mouse over them that the trash can icon appears.

I clicked it and twice did the wrong thing next:

screen shot of delete confirmation

So what would you click?

  1. It seems obvious to me now that this is a confirm-deletion state: The green check-mark is a confirmation that you want to delete the saved search. Nevertheless, I chose the ‘X’ twice. I think the problem with the check-mark is there’s no visible question asking “Do you really want to delete this search?” Adding “Delete?” to the left of the check-mark and red X would probably be sufficient.

Back to the original goal: Finding my missing DMs. As I was writing up my support ticket, I looked at the dialog box and something about all that black space in the column around ‘Search’ made me move the cursor there.

screen shot of little arrow that appears on hover

  1. Can you see the little arrow there? That’s the affordance you get once you hover in the black space, inviting you to click. Easy to miss.

If you do hover, see the arrow and click–success!

screen shot of the core options

So how about it, TweetDeck? Add some more visibility to these options in the next release? Perhaps grayscale options until they have focus?

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