Posts Tagged ‘Usability’

We are pleased to present below all posts tagged with ‘Usability’.

Adaptive Vs. Responsive Layouts And Optimal Form Field Labels

Welcome to a new column in the UX Design section on Smashing Magazine! Each month we'll pick a handful of popular questions asked by our readers around good practices in designing smart and usable experiences.

UX Design Q&A With Christian Holst: Adaptive Vs. Responsive Layouts And Optimal Form Field Labels

They will be answered by Christian Holst, a regular author here on Smashing and founder of Baymard Institute. Prior to co-founding Baymard Institute in 2009, he worked as a usability engineer in the hearing aid, credit card and consulting industries. If you have any questions that you would like me to tackle for a future Usability Q&A column here on Smashing Magazine, please ask them in the article's comment section!

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Better Password Masking For Sign-Up Forms

Editor's Note: This article expresses the author's personal opinion and covers experimental UX techniques which aren't considered to be best practice.

Masking passwords is an old practice that’s commonly implemented in sign-up and log-in forms. It’s used to prevent over-the-shoulder snoopers from catching the user’s password. While masking passwords is a good security practice, there’s a chance it could jeopardize the user experience of your sign-up form. When users sign up on a website, they expect a no-hassle, worry-free form to fill out. But masking the password could prevent that.

Better Password Masking For Sign-Up Forms

Log-in forms are used more often than sign-up forms. Users only need to sign up once to create an account, whereas they will need to log in multiple times to access their account. Because log-in forms are used so frequently, there’s a strong chance that users will end up typing their password in front of other people.

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design patternsYou Already Know How To Use It

In the first television advertisement for the iPad, the narrator intoned, “It’s crazy powerful. It’s magical. You already know how to use it.” This was an astonishing claim. Here was a new, market-defining, revolutionary device, unlike anything we had seen before, and we already knew how to use it. And yet, for the most part, the claim was true.

You Already Know How To Use It

How does a company like Apple make such great new things that people already know how to use? One answer lies in the ability of Apple designers to draw upon patterns that people are familiar with.

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navigation usabilitySticky Menus Are Quicker To Navigate

Most designers would agree that navigation is one of the most critical components of a website. Despite this, it is not always easy to use or access. Traditionally, users must scroll back to the top of the website to access the navigation menu. I recently wondered whether sticky menus makes websites quicker to navigate, and I conducted a usability study to find the answer.

Sticky Menus Are Quicker To Navigate

Let’s look at the results of the study, a few implementation techniques and some related challenges. Sticky, or fixed, navigation is basically a website menu that is locked into place so that it does not disappear when the user scrolls down the page; in other words, it is accessible from anywhere on the website without having to scroll.

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Beyond Wireframing: The Real-Life UX Design Process

We all know basic tenets of user-centred design. We recognize different research methods, prototyping, as well as documenting techniques in our rich methodological environment. The question you probably often ask yourself though is how it all works in practice?

Beyond Wireframing: The Real-Life UX Design Process

What do real-life UX design processes actually look like? Do we have time for every step in the process that we claim ideal? In this article, I'd like to share a couple of insights about the real-life UX design process and speak from my own experience and research.

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Designing For Device Orientation: From Portrait To Landscape

The accelerometer embedded in our smart devices is typically used to align the screen depending on the orientation of the device, i.e. when switching between portrait and landscape modes. This capability provides great opportunities to create better user experiences because it offers an additional layout with a simple turn of a device, and without pressing any buttons.

Designing For Device Orientation: From Portrait To Landscape

However, designing for device orientation brings various challenges and requires careful thinking. The experience must be as unobtrusive and transparent as possible, and we must understand the context of use for this functionality.

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Are You Giving Your Users Positive Feedback?

We love to tell users that they have done something wrong. We have error messages for everything from poorly formatted telephone numbers to incorrect logins. But what about our user's successes, do we celebrate them? Do we tell them they are doing something right?

Are You Giving Your Users Positive Feedback?

It is as important to tell users that they are doing things right, as it is to inform them when they make a mistake. This kind of positive reinforcement is key to a pleasurable user experience. In this post, I want to explain why positive feedback matters, suggest when it is appropriate and how to integrate it into your website.

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