Archive for the ‘User Experience’ Category

Friends and Enemies of a Customer-Centered Culture

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

I have had the opportunity to observe and operate within many corporate cultures. These days, every organization knows they’re supposed to be customer-centric. I hear companies say it all the time, but what does it really take? How do you know

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if you really have it?

(more…)

United Airlines and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Experience

Tuesday, August 9th, 2011

Last night my mom needed to buy a ticket for my 17-year-old brother to fly from Minneapolis back to San Francisco where they live. I was on the phone with her twice, walking her through the United Airlines website for over 20 minutes each time.

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This is unacceptable. My mother, who is 55, isn’t very computer savvy but she does own a computer with an Internet connection, has taken programming classes, has done online dating, and has even managed to book

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a ticket on Orbitz once… maybe twice.
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A Hole Is to Dig: Google+ Is Cool, But How to Fill It?

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011
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few weeks since Google rolled out Google+, its latest attempt at social media, to a significant number of users. If estimates are to be believed, there are now well over 10 million interaction designers using it right now, “just to

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see where this all goes.”

My view of Google+ is admittedly colored by the crowd I’ve fallen in with, but the impression is hard for me to shake. Most of the conversations in my stream are still about Google+ itself. The consensus opinion, which I share, seems to be that Google has created something pretty exciting, and that people can’t wait to see how it will be used. One friend exclaimed, “I had somewhat figured my pattern of sharing on FB and on Twitter, and now I’m staring at this Google+ ‘Share what’s new…’ box thinking, this doesn’t fit into my content strategy yet!”

These “what is essay service it” reactions remind me of the reaction to Google Wave, but with a difference. Wave was complex and offered a capability that most people didn’t need on a daily basis, whereas Google+ is instantly recognizable as something similar to the social networks used by millions of people every day. It has status updates, and connections, and profiles. The obvious comparisons to Facebook and Twitter, however, gloss over the fact that Google+ is more complex. Social networks are generally designed to be used in specific ways—ways that reinforce or emulate offline relationships—and there are clues within their designs that suggest what that use is. Google+ lacks these clues, however, which makes it interesting, powerful, and confusing all at once. (more…)

Insecure Footing: How Bad Usability Endangers Internet Users

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

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How do you communicate danger to people who don’t speak your language? How do you not only alert them, but give them enough information to act even though you will never meet face-to-face? These questions were behind an effort to design a warning for the proposed nuclear waste storage facility inside Nevada’s Yucca Mountain, and they’re similar to the ones you face when trying to design for user security online.

In 2003, the Desert Space Foundation, a Nevada arts organization, hosted an exhibition that showcased novel ideas for a warning sign that would retain both its meaning and its structural integrity for the 10,000 years that Yucca Mountain was projected to pose a hazard. The difficulty of the task manifested itself in the variety of entries. Several artists assumed that familiar symbols like the yellow and black radiation icon would carry the scent of danger across the divide, but not everyone agreed, according to a Los Angeles Times article at the time.

The risk of radiation burns is lower for Internet users (especially with modern LCD monitors), but being online can be dangerous all the same. The recipients of the communication are separated not by time but by their lack of technical expertise. However, the complexity of the threat and the jargon used to describe it is at least as opaque to many people as ancient pictograms can be to us.
(more…)

Recommendations to Improve iPhone Social Media Apps

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010
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Besides using my iphone as a phone, I also use it to read emails, tweets, facebook status updates, yammer posts and TFLN (texts from last night). Most of the applications I use serve the same purpose—they provide content from various sources/ in

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dividuals, and they all have either an equivalent desktop application or websites. As I’ve become intimately familiar with these apps, I’ve begun to appreciate some of things that one or another does, and I’ve found it increasingly annoying that all of the apps aren’t following suit.

(more…)

Prototyping iPad Optimized Websites Using Axure

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010
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I have been tasked with creating an Axure prototype that will be demonstrated on an iPad. I’ve seen the iPad, played with the iPad, but this is first time I will be creating a prototype to be displayed on the iPad.

The first question I had was, “How will I get the Axure prototype onto the iPad? Is there an app for that? “

(more…)

#DeltaFail: Customer Experience Affected by Merger

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

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“#deltafail What a clusterf**k! I’d rather crawl over broken glass with Danny DeVito on my back than fly in the USA” (@brucetiffee)

I haven’t been impressed with Delta lately but if I was given that choice, I’d choose the plane over Danny DeVito.

I have been a loyal Northwest Airlines (NWA) flyer since 2004 (mainly due to the fact that I live in or had lived in hub cities, first Minneapolis (MSP) and then Detroit (DTW)). I’ve been a Platinum Elite member since October 2007 which gave me a lot of perks until Delta introduced Diamond status, which makes Platinum mean less on Delta than it did on NWA.

(more…)

Sustainability and User Experience Join Together for World Usability Day

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

This Thursday marks the fourth year of World Usability Day. Held the second Thursday of November every year, it is an event that celebrates the design

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around us that makes our lives easier. This year’s focus on sustainability and design.
Having always been an environmental geek, the theme of this year’s World Usability Day is especially important to me. Sustainability and creative reuse

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has been a focus of mine since I was in an organization lobbying for recycling containers in high school. I’ve always focused on how daily actions can affect the Earth. I was one of the few people who used her palm pilot to store directions to friend’s homes and measurements for an ottoman I was building because I did not want to waste paper. My current phone Cialis brand name maps directions, stores measurements and even lets me check in for a flight without the hassle and guilt of paper. Not only does this design create less waste, it also makes me more viagra 100mg england organized.
The last few years has seen a greater consciousness in how we treat the world and how thoughtful design

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of systems and products can improve someone’s day. Instead of jumping into design, we take a moment to study how people use existing technology and how they live their lives or do their jobs and then make recommendations for the systems and products they use. This may result

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savings that resounds with many people in this economy. I realize that this doesn’t work for everyone. For example, my brother isn’t an eco freak like myself, but he loves smaller energy bills and I love that he makes less of an impact on the Earth.
Join the discussion of this year’s celebration. UPA chapters around the world have events focusing on sustainability and user experience. Find your local chapter event.

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Two ways to use storytelling in your presentations

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

If you have made presentations in the past, it is very likely that you have spent a fair amount of time thinking about ways to make it more engaging for your audience. I have grappled with this situation too. So when I saw a workshop on using

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, I registered for it. Here are a few things I learned.

The workshop provided practical tips cipro purchase online to improve presentation content, delivery and brought forward two distinct styles for weaving stories into presentations. These styles emerged naturally during the impromptu presentations made by people in the audience and were not prescribed by our presentation coach Lynn Espinoza. Maybe that is why I found them to be more effective in communicating a message. Here are the two ways of using personal stories in your presentations to better engage the audience. (more…)

The Aesthetics of Interaction: A Response to Tog’s iPhone Home Screen Redesign

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

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The week before last, the legendary Bruce Tognazzini posted an article to his AskTog column proposing a solution to several problems he sees with the home screen. I read it, but my reaction was not the fawning idolatry I’d expected. It’s very difficult for me to say this but… his redesign is inelegant. The problems he identified are real and relevant, but I couldn’t help but react negatively to what I perceived to be an aesthetic dissonance in his solution. It doesn’t fit the playful aesthetic that is characteristic of the iPhone OS. So I’ve let the problems steep in my brain for a few days, and I think I’ve come up with a more elegant (or at least more iPhone-ish) solution.

(more…)

New Article Written For Johnny Holland

Monday, August 24th, 2009

Last week I published an article on Johnny Holland, an excellent online magazine about interaction design & research. I talk about how

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the iPhone’s user experience generic levitra no prescription uk design illuminate the problems that user experience designers buy cheap viagra will be grappling with

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in the immediate future, and I provide some methods to explore in order to address these problems. So far, the article has generated a lot of discussion. People have reacted strongly against and strongly for some of the points I make in the article. Read it over lunch (it’s viagra fast no prescription long) and throw in your two cents!

The iPhone is Not Easy to Use: A New Direction for UX Design

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Nine Essential Characteristics of Good UX Designers

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
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p>Someone sent a message to the Adaptive Path Alums mailing list last fall asserting that Information Architects (IAs) need to be really great coders to do their jobs. I was aghast. I uttered many things, loudly, that are inappropriate for a profession

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al blog. The clincher for me was this line, “[IAs] need to wake up in the middle of the night and code SQL joins.” No. No, we don’t. I collected myself and wrote a response just snarky enough for me to feel I’d made my point. This discussion went back and forth for a bit, but it ended up somewhere interesting. To make my ultimate point, I thought hard about it and defined the nine essential characteristics you must possess to make a good software user experience designer.

(more…)

User Experience and Healthcare

Friday, June 26th, 2009
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p>When I was putting together a presentation on User Experience and Healthcare for Refresh Portland, I stepped back to see if I do anything differently when desi

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gning products and applications for Healthcare clients than I do for viagra original use clients in other industries. After buy discount cialis online looking at the emerging trends in the Healthcare industry and the shifting landscape of online user behavior, it became clear to me that when designing for Healthcare, I focus more user research and I

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prefer smaller, more iterative cycles within the design process.

The attached presentation details my insights on the subject and describes the steps I feel one should focus on when designing products and applications for Healthcare users.

(more…)

Sustainability = Accessibility

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009
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p class=”MsoNormal” style=”margin: 0in 0in 0pt;”>I received the new Dwell magazine (Volume 9, issue 6, May 2009 “Beyond Green”) a couple of weeks ago. As I read the editor’s note about sustainability, I kept replacing the word sustainability with ac

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cessibility.

In Dwell Sam Grawe, editor-in-chief, states we as individuals need to make micro-decisions to improve sustainability and “government, corporations, and other institutions need to lay a framework that makes adopting those decisions easy.” (May 2009) The 508

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law (Rehabilitation Act) was passed “to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology accessible to people with disabilities.” (http://www.section508.gov/) Currently, the law applies only to federal agencies. Corporations and we as individuals are responsible for ensuring that this expands to other areas.

(more…)

Will the Facebook redesign, impact it’s future?

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

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p>March 13th started a fury of activity on my Facebook. Everybody who is vocal on my Facebook had something negative to say about its new design. I repeatedly questioned the reasoning behind it and looked for something… anything remotely positive about

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it. A quick search resulted in some insights on the goals of the new design and this made me contemplate the future of Facebook. (more…)