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Intentionally Bad Volume Controls Is the Best New Meme

Some of these are truly sadistic.
Image: Shutterstock.

The volume controls on most electronics are pretty standard, and that's how we like it. It's like the power button: It does what you expect it to do, if it's designed well. Designers don't futz with it. But what if they decided to get cute about it?

As Designer News pointed out, there's a fun meme going around Reddit's design and programming circles that challenges users to turn the otherwise perfectly useful volume slider into a series of nightmarish torture devices. They're like UI crimes against humanity.


Imagine sitting in a coffee shop and yelling "louder… LOUDER… softer" at your computer screen to change the volume. How long before the cops show up? How about a volume control that you have to set by launching the marker to the right decision like a game of Angry Birds? Any one of these would inspire a relatively calm person to punch their device, and that's why they're delightful.

Credit: BMJ

Redditor BMJ created a working version of this catapult control, and ildementis turned it into a surprisingly not-awful design with a point-and-shoot variation.

Credit: kittens_from_space

Credit: kittens_from_space

This volume control makes you speak at the volume you want listen to.

Credit: mienys

This time consuming concept makes the user assemble the desired volume out of dots…no thanks.

Credit: DPG_Kirito

Another example of volume control as a frustrating physics mini-game.

Credit: mrzacharyjensen

This one's practical: Simply adjust to the desired volume by moving to the right latitude.

Credit: TheSteganographer

Or simply roll the dice!

Credit: Maximuso

And, finally, in honor of our Canadian friends, a volume control you set by playing a game of curling.

For more torturous volume control designs, head to /r/ProgrammerHumor.