This document proposes to study "God's Web Site" from a usability analyst's point of view.
Once the identity and location of God's Web Site has been established, we will examine its compliance with consensus principles governing web content and design. These principles will be used to evaluate the site's usability characteristics, with special focus on its functionality, credibility, usability, memorability, and error recovery aspects.
Functionality: what the site is theoretically, according to its programmers and designers, supposed to do, or enable the user to do.
Usability: how easy it is for the user to understand the site, navigate within the site, and complete tasks by way of interacting with the site's mechanisms.
As we use the term web site, we will understand it to mean a system of nodes of compiled internal data and converging external data, that contains multiple two-way links, and functionalities enabling users to interact with the system and perform tasks. (Definition of web site based in part on web glossary entries by Tim Berners-Lee at www.w3.org/Terms).
In more simple terms, a web site is a place where you can obtain information, respond to the information (post a comment), and do things based on that information (contact the site owner, order a product, listen to an audio file, play a game, create your own blog site,or download a form).
This study will attempt to draw productive analogies between the cyber realm and the spiritual realm. Those with more expertise in either realm, I beg to patiently endure any imprecisions they may discover in this analysis, and consider the study on its merits as a pioneering work.
That object by which information and services from God are accessed by human beings is what we mean by "God's Web Site." The Cosmonet, or interconnected cosmic network, in which God's web site is located, is the universe in its totality.
God's Web Site, situated in the Cosmonet (much as the World Wide Web is floating on the Internet), is His Logos, His Divine Expression of Himself, otherwise known as His Word.
This Word, though it has existed as spoken statements by prophets, and as written documents compiled by inspired scribes, is most perfectly and completely embodied in His Son, Jesus Christ. The Word was with God, the Word was God, and the Word became flesh (human) and dwelt among us (see the Gospel of John, chapter 1).
However, we must always consider God's Web Site to be dual in nature: the divine and human person of Jesus Christ AND the paper and ink book called the Bible.
Our interface with God's Web Site is our mind (soul, spirit). More specifically, our mind in the mode of prayer and contemplation. We prayerfully contact the living Word (Jesus) and contemplatively study the written Word (Bible).
Let us now proceed to closely examine God's web site, and determine some of its usability characteristics.
1. FUNCTIONALITY: The proclaimed purpose of God's web site is to reveal God's nature and will, and to provide vital services, to all of humanity, to whomsoever will come. By systematically testing each functionality, we arrive at the conclusion that they are intact, operable, and reliable.
2. CREDIBILITY: God's Web Site is trustworthy, up-to-date, and supported by His own divine authority. Fulfillment of prophecy, archaeological discoveries and scientific substantiations, punishments to nations that rebel against Him, and the very existence of the Cosmonet (universe) itself testify to the credibility of God's Web Site. Users experience the integrity of the information by observing how promises, as well as consequences of non-compliance, are fulfilled in their personal lives.
3. USABILITY: God's Web Site is extremely easy to use. Jesus is ever present through the Holy Spirit and the Holy Bible. When reverent users study the text of the written Word, they sense the nearness of God. When they ask for things in prayer made in Jesus' name, and believe they will receive, they do indeed obtain. The need for outside influences, guides, or teachers is obviated by the Holy Spirit, who is proclaimed the Comforter, Advocate, and Teacher of spiritual things.
4. MEMORABILITY: The story of Jesus is one of the most remarkable tales ever told. How can anyone who has heard it forget the Man who was born of a virgin, healed bodies and minds, rebuked hypocrisy, taught beautiful lessons, died for all humanity on a cross...then arose from the dead and ascended back to heaven? On the other hand, who can blot completely out of recollection the parables, beatitudes, new commandment to love, and other utterances? Even the so-called hard sayings are unforgetable, by virtue of their oddness (plucking out the offending eye, camel going through the eye of a needle, removing the plank in your own eye so you can better see to pick out the speck in your neighbor's eye). God's Web Site, from Genesis to Revelation, embodied humanly in Christ, is indeed memorable.
5. ERROR RECOVERY: Any mistake made at God's web site is easily corrected by direct instruction from the Holy Spirit, reproof from other believers, or further application of prayer or study. Divine intervention can assist in re-establishing a user's intentions and efforts. Forgiveness is offered freely, which eliminates user remorse.