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Smashing Conf New York

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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.

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Sponsored Article How We Use Prototyping, And How It Made Us More Efficient

Prototyping is essential to help your team create the best product possible. It’s a chance to experiment with ideas and turn them into something tangible that you can test and build upon. When you fail with your prototype, you land softly — there’s always the chance to iterate and improve.

Prototyping For Success

The team behind Adobe’s new prototyping tool Experience Design (Adobe XD) uses prototyping as a method to test new features before they make it into the program. Being a product manager on the Adobe XD team, I'll share some insights into how the team uses prototyping to build and improve Adobe XD, and make prototyping more efficient for designers.

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Pixel-Perfect Specifications Without The Headaches

Designers, developers and managers often work with compressed timeframes and multiple projects simultaneously. A team must be able to respond quickly to feedback on their product from clients, project managers and developers. Each minor revision in the UI or UX needs to be reflected in the documentation, so that designers and developers always have the latest information.

Pixel-Perfect Specifications Without The Headaches

A style guide ensures that your project doesn’t encounter serious problems when you implement the initial design. Making sure that all specifications are accurate to their designs is critical, because an inaccurate specification means that developers will have to either rely on guesswork when building the app or go to the design source to get answers to their questions.

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How To Run A UI Design Critique

Criticism is easy. It seems like everybody has an opinion, but, as the author Harlan Ellison points out, "You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion." To become informed, though, requires exploration. Design critiques are an important part of any product exploration.

Creativity Under The Microscope: Running A UI Design Critique

A design critique — where the creator discusses and explains the creation with the rest of the team and/or client — is not about badgering the designer or pushing them to justify every decision they made. That’s just criticism. A good design critique is meant to explore the design, find where it is working and where it could be improved. If done well, design critiques allow everyone on the team to feel as if they have been heard and allow clients to give valuable feedback.

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Experience Design Essentials: Animated Microinteractions In Mobile Apps

Dariel Fitzkee, the famous magician, once said, “Magic is both in the details and in the performance.” Interaction design is just like that. Designers love to get the big picture right, but if the details aren’t handled properly, the solution will fail. The magic is all in the details. That’s why well-designed microinteractions make experiences feel crafted.

Experience Design Essentials: Animated Microinteractions In Mobile Apps

To get a better understanding of how your design benefits from microinteractions, it will help to sketch out your app ideas. Adobe introduced a new design and wireframing app called Experience Design (or Adobe XD) which lets you design wireframes and make them interactive. You can download and test Adobe XD for free.

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Opinion Column Developers “Own” The Code, So Shouldn’t Designers “Own” The Experience?

We've all been there. You spent months gathering business requirements, working out complex user journeys, crafting precision interface elements and testing them on a representative sample of users, only to see a final product that bears little resemblance to the desired experience.

Developers Own The Code, So Shouldn’t Designers Own The Experience?

Maybe you should have been more forceful and insisted on an agile approach, despite your belief that the organization wasn't ready? Perhaps you should have done a better job with your pattern portfolios, ensuring that the developers used your modular code library rather than creating five different variations of a carousel. Or, maybe you even should've sat next the the development team every day, making sure what you designed actually came to pass.

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User Memory Design: How To Design For Experiences That Last

The two charts pictured below changed the way I think about thinking. Reproduced from a classic 1996 psychology study, the story behind these charts is a vivid illustration that the way we humans feel in the moment as we experience the world can be very different from how we feel when we think back on those experiences later.

User Memory Design: How To Design For Experiences That Stick

Understanding the difference between experience and memory — and the ways they are related — can make us more sophisticated experience designers. In this piece, I’m going to provide some tips for designing for experiences that leave a lasting positive impression. But first, I need to explain the following two charts.

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Testing Credit-Card Numbers In E-Commerce Checkouts (Cheat Sheet)

As a developer, I work a lot with e-commerce websites and, as a result, with a lot of payment gateways. I’m fortunate that I get to work on many different projects for different clients, each with its own unique challenges. I have, therefore, found myself working with a lot of different payment gateways over the years, from the more familiar ones like PayPal and Stripe to some lesser known ones.

Testing Credit-Card Numbers In E-Commerce Checkouts (Cheat Sheet)

While I love the variety of my work, I generally find working with payment gateways to be frustrating. I’m sure I’m not alone in this opinion! For many payment gateways, the documentation is poorly written, lengthy and, at times, difficult to find.

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Connecting Children With Nature Through Smart Toy Design

Did you know that by the time a teen in the US reaches 16 years of age, they are spending less than seven hours a week in nature, and these trends are worldwide. Parents are as concerned about their children not having time outdoors as they are about bullying, obesity and education. But they are unsure about what to do.

Connecting Children With Nature Through Smart Toy Design

Parents have increased concerns for their children’s safety. They are less willing to let their children play outdoors without direct supervision. As a result, children spend most of their free time in organized sports, music and arts activities. This results in less time for unstructured play than in previous generations. Richard Louv, writer and nature-time advocate, describes this condition as a “nature deficit disorder.”

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Quick Tips Conversational Interfaces: Where Are We Today? Where Are We Heading?

Computers and human beings don’t speak the same language. So, to make interaction possible, we rely on graphical user interfaces (GUIs). But GUIs come with a natural barrier: People have to learn to use them. They have to learn that a hamburger button hides a menu, that a button triggers an action.

Conversational Interfaces: Where Are We Today? Where Are We Heading?

But with technology evolving and language recognition and processing improving, we are on a path that could make interaction with digital services more intuitive, more accessible and more efficient — through conversational interfaces.

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