jeweled platypus


thursday, april 21, 2005
Complaining about MyPyramid

the lovely new food pyramid

The government’s new websites are crappy. The name is dumb, the interface is pitiful, they aren’t very accessible, and they look bad. Judging by the nice PDFs available, they just needed to find some real web designers.

First, that name is pretty bad. “My” should be “Your” and CamelCase is unnecessary. It’s not much of a pyramid anyway, more like a staircase-triangle. Here’s a few bonus points for including the TLD in the site name.

Exploring is just painful, with too many badly-organized choices and weak navigation on deeper pages. I tried to learn more about my daily servings of food groups but gave up halfway through because it involved so many clicks. At least the basic recommendations are easy to find.

My Pyramid Tracker is worse. A zillion clicks allow you to analyze your precise energy needs — if you’re dedicated and have a lot of time. The interface is crap. There are too many specific choices for foods and activities. But once I finished it, the analyzations were good.

The accessibility statement is lame. A lot of the sites’ text is inside images. Some of the detail text is in capitals (eek!). In several places, the background/text contrast is poor. The pages look cluttery and badly-spaced, like most table-based layouts.

The new pyramid could use more density of information. You need to read the website to figure it out. The basic version doesn’t have any pictures on it — you shouldn’t have to refer to a key. The brain does not find it easy to translate those proportional wedges into servings of food. Also, I don’t like the large amounts of dairy and that the vegetarian information is almost hidden. Oh well, the little staircase guy is cool.

comments (3)

forgot the [/rant] part
kyle on 4/21/2005 00:52:26

the new food pyramid is way too confusing.
Tery Spataro on 4/25/2005 18:02:51

I also do not like the new food guide pyramid. I find it not very consumer friendly. What do consumers do who have no access to the computer to get on the pyramid web sites? The old pyramid was much easier to use. Any revisions could have been made in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. By the way, I also do not like the dark colors on this web site either. To hard to read.
cheryl on 6/1/2005 18:45:15

comments are off. for new comments, my email address is


I’m Britta Gustafson.

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