public marks

PUBLIC MARKS from dkappe with tag uxd

May 2007

Recommendation Search Engines:

by 1 other
Similar to Amazon’s suggestive selling, e.g., “people who bought X also bought Y,” these sites group recommendations around a target book, band, or film. Liveplasma.combills itself as a “discovery engine,” providing searches in multiple language

Don’t Confuse the User

by 1 other
You’re the team lead for developing the next killer app, and word is passed along that the marketing campaign is being built around the user-centric design of your new app. Unfortunately, no budget has been allocated to hire someone with...

The Evolving Web

by 1 other
Semantic Web. Web 3.0. The Intelligent Web. Whichever terminology you want to use, it's a vision for the Web in which information is given explicit meaning, making it easier for machines to automatically process and integrate said information. Currently,

This is a test

by 1 other
The fundamental rationale that underlies the direct and observational techniques of user research is that a user’s actions speak louder than their words. As a matter of fact, as usability specialists we are trained to go beyond the surface of...

Nice Reference Tool

by 1 other
There I was the other day, skimming through the New York Times online when I mistakenly double clicked on a word (which is why I shouldn’t continually mess with my mouse settings, but that’s another post). The next thing I...

1 Picture == 1,000 Words

by 1 other
For most of us, visual presentation has a greater immediate impact than text or numbers alone. Graphs are effectively used in presentations for that very reason: they quickly convey that Column A is larger than Column B, or that Line...

The boundaries of personas

Leisa Reichelt has recently published a thought-provoking post on her site, disambiguity, titled Yes, you should be using personas. She states that she's come to the opinion that personas are incredibly valuable, but not for the reasons many people think.

Usability testing in the agile environment: an overview

by 1 other
The growing partnership between user-centered design practices and the array of agile methodologies faces an impasse when it comes to usability testing. In a traditional waterfall approach, a formal usability assessment generally occurs close to release a

April 2007

Too many chiefs

I’ve recently been working on a handful of websites whose philosophy is directly derived from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s observation that “a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” What these bedeviled sites have in common is a decentral

Community Spirit

Although the concept of community has become an integral, high-profile component of the vision of Web 2.0, as an online system of communication and collaboration it is an elder statesman of the internet, preceding the birth of the World Wide...

Oops! Our Bad.

There are two ways of producing error-free software. But only the third will work. ~ anonymous There comes a time in the life of any application when an error occurs. Ideally, the software should be written in such a way...

Avoiding the edge in redesign

Commenting on the debut of a recently redesigned metropolitan newspaper, blogger Steve Rhodes articulated a concern that certainly must strike a chord with many IAs: . . .[T]he real problem is one that every redesign faces - that old lipstick...

The new market research is the old user research

The objectives of user and market research (should ideally) differ dramatically, the data combining to create a multifaceted profile of the audience as both customer and end-user of a website or application. User research traditionally begins with a disco

#*&)#*$)# Software.

by 1 other
Nothing is more frustrating than having your software beep at you when you’re trying to do something you *know* it can do, and you’re flummoxed as to why it’s resisting your every effort to continue on with your work. All...

Alternative Search Engines, Part 1

by 1 other
Two days ago, Hitwise released statistics showing that Google accounted for 64% of all searches in March 2007. I would have assumed the percentage was higher, given the sheer ubiquity—and utility—of Google, whose name, like Xerox, has become synonymou

Why User Research Matters

What if you brought in users to test your application and the final result was one big collective yawn. It’s not that the product wasn’t usable -- oh, maybe some minor tweaks to the presentation layer could improve things, but...

Do you know your SiteKey?

SiteKey is a system some sites (notably banking sites) use to prevent customers from logging into fraudulent sites dummied up to look like the actual sites. During registration (or updating an account if it was created pre-SiteKey), the user is...

5 Practical Uses for Web Animation

Most animation being served up on the web serves no purpose other than to distract, irritate, annoy or confuse. Most web interface designers would tell you, rightly so, that as a general rule, it’s better to stay away from animation....

Adobe CS 3 Just Released

Adobe released its 2007 product suite this past week. As soon as I heard the news I jumped onto the website ( to get a glimpse of some of the new product enhancements featured in this new release, dubbed CS...

Creating an Experience

Interface Designers don’t just design software GUI’s, we design experiences. It is job number One to keep this in mind. We have to understand that experiences are the sum total of all of the circumstances that combine in one moment...

How to Tell the Difference Between a Web Site and an Application

The World Wide Web is not just for informational, or marketing based web sites anymore. These days it’s hard not to run into web sites that behave more like the applications you are used to seeing on your desktop--dynamic, super-responsive,...

Wait, how did I get here?

The importance of navigation is a given when designing a site. Design it poorly and it’ll have the same effect as having no navigation, i.e., leaving your users lost and confused and rendering your site useless. Taking the time to...

March 2007

Ideas for User Research

User Research isn't limited to sitting behind a glass window, nervously chomping on MMs while glaring at the hapless user who’s attempting to navigate through your next killer app. There are different types of user research that can be incorporated...

User Task Flows Help Developers:

Work out the Workflow. Making changes after a product is released is much more costly, and sometimes not even feasible, than identifying issues up front and solving the problem before coding begins. Documenting the user task flows during the design...

From spam to slam

Chicago graduate student Kristin Thomas has found a creative way to recycle her spam e-mail by constructing poems using only the subject lines of the unwanted correspondence. “I don’t like to get angry, and I was starting to get angry,”...