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Category: UX Design
Quality articles on usability, information architecture, interaction design and other user experience (UX) related topics – for digital (Web, mobile, applications, software) and physical products. Through these articles, experts and professionals share with you their valuable ideas, practical tips, useful guidelines, recommended best practices and great case studies. Curated by Chui Chui Tan. Subscribe to the RSS-Feed.
Storytelling takes many forms. In the past, stories were told orally, with people telling and retelling myths, fables and even histories. As writing technology became more prevalent, we began to record our stories, and we told them in the pages of books.
Now, our society is awash in different devices and technologies, and those traditions of spoken stories and printed stories are blurring. Multi-screen narratives are being told across all kinds of platforms, pages and devices, making for truly immersive experiences. We are watching them, tapping them and learning from them.
This article is about design consultancy. It’s about wrangling that client who uses empty sentences like, “We want a snappy, simple experience,” or, “It should be on brand and should really pop.”
It’s about commanding the room and setting a vision before moving on to wireframes and pixels. While I’ll talk in terms of consultation, these ideas can be applied to the design phase of any new project.
Infinite scroll promised to provide users with a better experience. However, the good is often accompanied by the bad and the ugly. Once we understand the strengths and weaknesses of infinite scrolling, we can begin to use it to empower our interfaces. [Links checked February/21/2017]
Human nature's framed perception demands an hierarchic interface; an interface that would make it easy for users to find their way around. Infinite scroll, sometimes leaves users feeling disoriented as they travel down the page that never ends.
Liverpool FC fans sing “You’ll Never Walk Alone” to their players during matches. UX research is best done when a team is involved. When you run UX research on your own without active observers, you are missing its point.
This article describes and gives you a tool I created called the Rainbow Spreadsheet. With it, you will be able to collaboratively observe UX research sessions with team members (or clients). You will be able to conduct research that involves the entire product team, with results that are turned around quickly and that team members will be committed to acting on.
As UI designers, we’re always interested in learning, reading user research, understanding best practices and keeping up to date on all the latest approaches and tactics for building websites and applications.
One of the most exciting concepts we’ve started to apply to our thinking is the mobile-first approach, famously pioneered by designer Luke Wroblewski on his blog and then in his subsequent book. Generally, this approach provides a healthy way to gain focus, cut the fat and get to the heart of what’s important — for both content and interaction.
Every app tells a story. Apps like Pandora tell the story of music; apps like Tip N Split tell a story of a calculator; and apps like Temperature tell the story of weather. Then we have storybook apps like Alice for the iPad, which literally tell stories!
The story of the cluttered app market is well known! Biz Report recently reported that the number of app downloads is estimated to reach 56 billion in 2013. And the San Francisco Chronicle has just reported that over 700,000 apps are for sale in the iTunes Store. Getting noticed is a major concern for app developers, and getting noticed sometimes requires not only a breakthrough app, but a compelling story.
A record number of shoppers are turning to their smartphones to research potential purchases. Meanwhile, the bigger question — are those same users willing to complete the purchases on their mobile device? — is quickly being answered.
The US, for example, saw an 81% spike in mobile e-commerce (m-commerce) sales in 2012, comprising a $25 billion market. And it’s not just apps. By a landslide, users prefer mobile websites to apps for shopping.
Designing with users in mind is a tricky thing. Not only does it require of us a sound understanding of who our users are, but the actual act of translating what we know about them into a well-designed product is not always an obvious or easy path.
Currently, our user experience tools tend to focus on “who” users are. I believe this is a hangover from how we traditionally approached marketing and market research. A couple of years ago, I stumbled across a somewhat different method, which has proven useful in a few of my own projects.
One of the most famous interfaces in sci-fi is gestural — the precog scrubber interface used by the Precrime police force in Minority Report. Using this interface, Detective John Anderton uses gestures to “scrub” through the video-like precognitive visions of psychic triplets.
After observing a future crime, Anderton rushes to the scene to prevent it and arrest the would-be perpetrator. This interface is one of the most memorable things in a movie that is crowded with future technologies, and it is one of the most referenced interfaces in cinematic history.
How do you convince clients to trust you with their valuable and much-loved product? In my experience, the best way to sell work to clients is to apply user-centered design not only to the work we produce, but also to the clients who commission that work.
We have to understand who our clients are, what is important to them and what their goals are. And then we have to deliver work that not only meets the needs of end users, but also satisfies the personalities within the company itself.
The products we build are full of feedback loops, whether we know it or not. People who study human behavior agree that feedback loops play a critical role in what we do. From biofeedback to the quantified self, designers and psychologists alike are discovering the real power that these cyclical interactions play in shaping our day-to-day choices.
Designing for behavior change can increase user engagement, create business value and improve lives. Whatever you’re designing, it probably involves feedback. Designing that feedback to be as effective as possible can mean the difference between a successful and failed product. This article discusses how to influence behavior by designing well-crafted feedback loops.
Editor’s note: Welcome to Smashing Magazine UX Design Q&A. It works like this: you send in questions you have about UX Design, and each month we’ll pick a handful of questions asked by our readers about best practices in designing smart and usable experiences.
They will be answered by Christian Holst, a regular author here on Smashing Magazine and founder of the Baymard Institute. Prior to cofounding the Baymard Institute in 2009, he worked as a usability engineer in the hearing-aid, credit-card and consulting industries.