Watching a progress bar fill up slowly while waiting for stuff to download or upload is the Internet equivalent of being put on hold. It’s always tempting to hit “cancel” instead of “OK.” What if a clever design could make this daily drag suck less?
To that end, Swedish graphic designer Viktor Hertz created “Works in Progress Bars.” On his website, he calls it “A quick and silly little side-project,” but if actually implemented, it could make digital drudgery slightly more fun. Hertz redesigned the progress bar in a series of imaginative graphics, with the OK/Cancel buttons rephrased as existential questions.
Inspiration struck during an idle moment staring at a screen: “I was waiting for Illustrator to save a document, and the idea just popped up. I try to look at things with an open mind and find ways to use shapes and objects in a completely new way,” Hertz tells Co.Design.
One is a “Quick Personality Test,” which asks whether the progress bar is half empty or half full. Another, called “Becoming a Jedi,” resembles a Star Wars lightsaber slowly filling up with a green glow (trusting the force requires patience). Yet another references “Should I Stay or Should I Go,” The Clash’s 1982 hit, with “Stay” and “Go” replacing the boring “OK” and “Cancel” buttons.
Hertz printed his Works in Progress Bars on t-shirts, tote bags, and iPhone cases, which he sells on his website.