Via Etienne Mineur, I found some photo captures of this amazing book about designing for the french minitel. The book's called "Conviviel 1, dialogues et images électroniques de grande diffusion" (in english: "Mixware: electronic dialogues and images for the general public"). See here some parts of the book scanned by Mineur.

What is interesting is the "rules" described by the books' author (my translation form french to english):

"The relevant "telematic" applications:

  1. Does not imply training on the user's part, nor manual
  2. Answers a need and bring an advantage compared to the means of communication employed thus far
  3. Never fail to logic
  4. Has a personality, its own brand
  5. Does not have dead-end or wrong tracks
  6. Give surprises and lives with its own time
  7. Take into account the user's training level
  8. Take into account the user's personality
  9. Gives benefit rather than costs
  10. Let people get back to it
  11. "

Why do I blog this? although this gem is impossible to find, I would crave to have a copy (even a pdf) as the ideas described there seems very relevant (as aesthetically great). A side-reason for this blogpost is that I am collecting material for a discussion about "hidden sources of interaction design" to show how certain paths are valuable (and shaped?) interaction design: some good lessons for the field can be drawn from the minitel and also CD-rom applications.