A Review of the Neblio Stakebox

This review is a heuristic analysis of the Neblio Stakebox. It takes into account the process of setting up the Neblio Stakebox (including the instructions provided by Stakebox.org) as well as the graphical user interface of the Neblio wallet itself. Below you will find an annotated recording of our initial interactions with the Neblio Stakebox as well as in-depth discussions surrounding various facets of the existing experience. Please note that any suggestions provided in this review are limited to simple, high-level fixes that can be made to the existing experience in order to reduce uncertainty and the chance of user error when setting up or using the Neblio Stakebox and/or Neblio wallet. Please feel free to use as you see fit. Our mission is to help those working in blockchain technology create better user experiences and achieve wider adoption of their product. Further, we offer full UX consulting services in the areas of user research, usability testing, information architecture, and visual design. 



1.   Instructions

It's understood that we are dealing with technology that is still very much in its infancy stage and therefor will require users to interact with and endure less than ideal interfaces and user experiences. However, this doesn't mean that those users who are less knowledgable or tech-savvy should be excluded or unable to participate in the advent of web 3.0, the internet of value. With well-crafted, detailed instructions any user, whether it's a seasoned blockchain enthusiast or a noob trying to get involved, should be able to get the Neblio Stakebox up and running.

Issue

Instructions are not easily accessible to users and lack information

Help and Documentation
Aesthetic and Minimalist Design

Out of the box, users are not presented with any physical (printed) instructions on how to hook up the Stakebox or set up the Neblio wallet for staking. The only clue as to where users can find the instructions is located on the back of some text-heavy business cards. Unfortunately, these cards do not even contain the word/label instructions on them. Further, the link provided on the card is not a direct link to the instructions themselves nor is there any explanation as to were users can find the instructions if they do visit the link.

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User who do manage to find the instructions, will find that they find the Getting Started instructions on stakebox.org, will find that the in for the Neblio Stakebox (and other Stakeboxes as we've found) often do not provide users with a comprehensive set of steps as well as subsequent explanations of what the user should see / expect while embarking on these steps. This puts users, especially those that are risk-adverse and/or less tech savvy, in a precarious position where they are susceptible to making mistakes, getting of course, or abandoning the project altogether out of confusion and frustration. Note: some of these issues will be addressed in the points below.

Suggestion

First and formost, revamp instructions to provide a more detailed list of steps including subsequent information about the purpose of the step and what the user should see / expect to occur during the step. We have put together a more comprehensive set of instructions here.

Secondly, provide a printed copy of these instructions in the Stakebox package sent to the user. If this is not possible, at least provide a flyer inside the package telling users where to find the instructions online. The full instructions and flyer should include a link to the online instructions as well as the contact information of customer support.


2.   Application Script

One of the first steps to setting up the Neblio Stakebox is launching the file install-neblio-qt.sh. This file is an application script that downloads and installs the wallet file as well as pre-packaged blockchain data which seeds the wallet in order to reduce the amount time the wallet needs to sync with the network to obtain the remaining blocks.

Issue

System does not provide enough information to users about what to expect

Error Prevention
Visibility of System Status

While this script is running, there is no indication of what the user should expect to happen when the script finishes. Note, there are progress indications, which are great, but the user has no way of knowing that the window will close automatically once the script is done. Further, there is a delay between the time the script displays 'Unpacking objects: 100% (9/9) done' and when the window closes. This leaves the user in a state of ambiguity where they might ask themselves "Do I need to do something?" and therefor at risk of taking action that might jeopardize the successful completion of the script.  

time-lapse at 1000%

time-lapse at 1000%

Suggestion

It is important to provide users with information on what to expect during periods of ambiguity. A simple fix would be to place a message directly in the script - perhaps just above the status information that reads:

"THIS WINDOW WILL CLOSE AUTOMATICALLY WHEN FINISHED"

Further, clarify in any provided instructions that all the user needs to do during this time is wait for the script to run and the window to close.


3.   Wallet Synchronization

Once the wallet file has been installed, the next step for users is to launch the wallet for the first time. When the wallet opens, it has not yet fully synced with the network. This is conveyed to the user both in the Stakebox instructions and via two red labels placed in the Overview section that read "(out of sync)".

Issue

System does not provide enough information to users about what to expect

Error Prevention
Visibility of System Status

When the wallet opens for the fist time, there is no indication to the user in the wallet itself that the wallet will begin to sync to the network on its own. Eventually a progress bar appears at the bottom of the wallet indicating that the wallet is importing blocks. However, during the time it takes for this process to begin, the user is left in a state of ambiguity where they might ask themselves "Is everything OK?" or "Do I need to do something?" and therefor at risk of taking premature or unnecessary action that might jeopardize the syncing process.

Suggestion

It is important to provide users with information on what to expect during periods of ambiguity. A simple fix would be to present a placeholder message at the bottom of the wallet (where the progress bar will eventually show) when the wallet launches for the first time that reads:

"Wallet will begin syncing momentarily"

Further, make sure that any accompanying instructions clarify to users that the wallet will begin syncing on its own but may sit idle for a few moments after launch. User should expect to see a progress bar  at the bottom of the wallet when the syncing process begins.


4.   Passphrase

Once the Neblio wallet has fully synced, users must encrypt their wallet. To encrypt the wallet, users create and enter a passphrase. Now, the nature of a wallet passphrase, obviously, is to be complex. It's a passPHRASE after all, not a passWORD. However, this is a paradigm shift for users use to the current status quo of login credentials - i.e. the use of passwords they can remember but, if they do happen to forget, can easily reset via the now ubiquitous "I forgot my password" feature. 

Issue

System does not provide enough upfront warning and direction to users regarding passphrase 

Error Prevention
Recognition rather than recall

Users are not provided any upfront warning about the importance of not losing their passphrase. The only warning comes after the user has already entered the passphrase twice and selected OK - at which point, if the user has not written the passphrase down and selects YES (accidentally or not), their ability to access their coins is 100% dependent on their memory. 

edited time-lapse of actual recording

Suggestion

It is important to prompt and lead users through a task in a way that reduces their chance of error.

Provide upfront warnings to users that their passphrase cannot be retrieved like a traditional password and, though the passphrase can be changed, it will require the old passphrase to do so.

Provide upfront instructions to users that they should write their passphrase down before actually entering it into the module and to store the physical copy of their passphrase in a safe place. 

Provide indication to users of their passphrase's strength while they are typing it into the New passphrase field. Further, provide indication to users that their entries do or do not match while they are typing it into the Repeat new passphrase field.

 

 


5.   Wallet Address

Once users have completed setting up the wallet for staking, they must send Neblio coins to the wallet via a provided wallet address under the Receive Tokens tab. Any user that's ever transferred money between bank accounts has a preexisting mental model of how this process should work for cryptocurrency. Here, a wallet address is analogous to an account number - except that it's an alphanumeric string as appose to a set of number. However, what some new users may not understand is that cryptocurrency transactions are nonreversible and therefor anything that increases their chance of error is an absolute no no

Issue

Users cannot easily view the full wallet address

Error Prevention
Recognition rather than recall

There's a pretty good chance that many users (including ourselves and the participants we've observed) will be leveraging a separate computer to send Neblio tokens to the Stakebox wallet. This requires users to view the wallet's receiving address on one screen while typing it into another.

neb transfer.001.jpeg

Unfortunately, when users open the Receive Token tab to view the provided wallet address, the full wallet address is truncated by 4 characters by default. There is an affordance of (...) to the right of the address indicating that there is more, however, users unfamiliar with what wallet addresses look like might think that's just part of the address. Further, traditional mechanisms for adjusting column width (i.e. click/drag barrier between cells or expand the window as a whole) do not reveal the full address. The only way to view the full address is rather unintuitive. We actually stumbled upon it by accident when recording a demonstration of how a user cannot view the full wallet address.

 

 

If users are unable to find the means to adjust the column within the wallet, the only other way they can access it is by using the Copy Address feature and pasting it into an outside application. This is unnecessary, confusing, and puts users at risk of making errors that can result in a permanent loss of funds.

trunc 2.gif

Suggestion

A simple fix is to show the full wallet address by default and, perhaps, make it so the user is unable to adjust the column width at all thus preventing the possibility of a miss read wallet address. 


6.   Main Navigation

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7.   Warnings, Notifications, & Status Indicators

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neblio icons.gif

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8.   Export Functionality

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9.   Multiple Languages

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10.   Address Book

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