User Friendly

Back in 1977 widely learned

User friendly was the term

Hope for the tech disadvantaged

People who’s computers they had ravaged

Their psyche telling them to think badly

About previous skills that came in handy

Harlan Crowder in ‘72

Designer for software just for you

Decided it was the perfect time

To make useful your computer dime

After the basic $1500 expense

He wanted to use common sense.


A very interesting man, Mr. Crowder. You can read about him here:Excerpt from “User Friendly” by Cliff Kuang and Robert Fabricant.

“The programs simply didn’t consider what someone else might do with them. To Crowder, they weren’t user friendly. And so Crowder proposed that a computer program be gauged not just on how well it solved a problem but on how easy it made the lives of the people trying to solve it. To be clear, he didn’t actually invent the term. As far as he knows, it had been floating around in the air, and it was there when he needed it. Which tends to prove how powerful it was—how it encapsulated something that people had started to feel.”