User Interface

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  • Five Movements in Design That We Should Pay Attention To

    UX Magazine
    Amy Cueva
    20 Oct 2014 | 8:37 am
    October 20, 2014Design is helping governments, organizations, and businesses improve the quality of interactions with the people they serve, leading to experiences that are more meaningful and effective. Business leaders understand now more than ever that continued focus on improving the customer journey is an imperative to designing products that win, satisfy their customers, and empower their employees. Savvy planners will consider these emerging movements as they look to the future:1. Maturation of the Design Discipline within OrganizationsMore and more, organizations are recognizing the…
  • eBay Made Me Think…But Not In A Good Way

    UsabilityBlog » UsabilityBlog
    17 Mar 2014 | 8:46 am
    [Note: this is a repost from the old UsabilityBlog. I'm just moving some "greatest hits" over to the new site.] Disclaimer: I am a user and fan of eBay. Just check out my profile – I’m a long time buyer/seller. When it comes to user experience, they do lots of things right. Here’s one thing they did wrong: They provided half-hearted, linkless “help” in the form of “to do x, go to [place A] or [place B]“, without including links to those locations. This is a no-brainer and should’ve been coded ages ago. As a result, I had to hunt around for a small but still-annoying…
  • 2003 Called…It Wants Its Error Message Back

    UsabilityBlog » UsabilityBlog
    17 Oct 2014 | 6:38 am
    File this under “anti-pattern”… here’s an error message I received from a web application when I clicked on something after I exceeded the automatic log out timer but the page didn’t refresh. Obviously this message is ugly and rude, but what else is happening here? Here’s a quick tally: 1. Dev-speak. Most of the message is clearly written for debugging purposes. Why show this to the end users, who in this case are students, instructors, and instructional designers? 2. Who’s the audience? While most of the content is directed at developers and QA…
  • Required Reading – Hunting Unicorns

    UsabilityBlog » UsabilityBlog
    15 Oct 2014 | 6:51 am
    My colleague and friend Patrick Neeman just posted a great presentation about the skillsets and competencies of effective UX practitioners. Why it’s required reading: 1. Patrick frames the problem: that is, there’s no single entry point or path into a UX career. Consequently, practitioners who identify as “UX practitioners” have wildly different skillsets and competencies. 2. He provides a very useful visual model of user experience competencies, and shows how the different sub-specialties map to the model. 3. He explicitly identifies the soft skills necessary to be an…
  • The Specialized Web: Working with Subject-Matter Experts

    A List Apart: The Full Feed
    21 Oct 2014 | 7:00 am
    The time had come for The Big Departmental Website Redesign, and my content strategist heart was all aflutter. Since I work at a research university, the scope wasn’t just the department’s site—there were also 20 microsites focusing on specific faculty projects. Each one got an audit, an inventory, and a new strategy proposal. I met one-on-one with each faculty member to go over the plans, and they loved them. Specific strategy related to their users and their work! Streamlined and clarified content to help people do what needed doing! “Somebody pinch me,” I enthused after another…
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    Signal vs. Noise

  • Basecampy?

    Nate Otto
    24 Oct 2014 | 9:03 am
    If there was a buddy cop movie starring the Geico gecko and the Aflac duck, I’m pretty sure it would outperform “Edge of Tomorrow” at the box office. We love our anthropomorphized branding mascots. Shortly after Basecamp hatched its own such character, I was watching a big event on TV, and it seemed as though every product in every commercial had sprouted arms and legs. I guess we are part of the zeitgeist. While I would love to take credit for inventing our Basecamp creature because he came out of the tip of my Micron, the fact is Jason asked me to create it, and it’s pretty hard to…
  • Google made one of Android's jokes into something clever.

    22 Oct 2014 | 7:48 am
    Face Unlock is one of those features that surprises you. “Wow, this is pretty cool.” But after the novelty wears off some things become apparent: it doesn’t work very well, it isn’t very secure (it can be fooled), and you look kinda silly trying to unlock your phone with your face. A few weeks ago John Gruber tweeted: Question for Android users: is face recognition unlocking still a thing?— John Gruber (@gruber) October 10, 2014 It reminded me of how Google creates these sci-fi things but doesn’t implement them very well. Often times…
  • iPad Spinners

    15 Oct 2014 | 9:35 am
    Last March the iPad team asked me to design some custom loading screen spinners for the Basecamp app. None of these have made it into the app yet, but I thought it would be fun to share some of the tests.
  • Admire someone? Write them an email, you might be surprised.

    Dan Kim
    15 Oct 2014 | 6:18 am
    Last week I attended the Digital PM Summit in Austin (Basecamp was a proud sponsor of the event!). There were a lot of great speakers, but the one I really wanted to see was Mike Monteiro. I’ve admired Mike’s work from afar for many years because it’s so honest and direct. I watched Mike’s entire talk – What Clients Don’t Know (and Why It’s Your Fault) – and enjoyed it thoroughly. It was so great, I wanted to say thanks—it’s the least I could do for something I liked so much. I looked through the crowd for a while, but was never able…
  • How Basecamp helped the Golddiggers get our act together

    Emily Wilder
    14 Oct 2014 | 7:34 am
    My relay team goes by the name “Alaska Golddiggers,” because race officials frown on us calling ourselves the more accurate “Team Shitshow.” For a group of otherwise competent women, we’ve managed to screw up a lot during our annual participation in the Klondike Trail of ’98 International Road Relay, a 10-leg, 175-kilometer race that follows the trail of the gold rush stampeders from Skagway, Alaska to Whitehorse, Yukon. Past oopsies include failing to renew passports on time, forgetting our running shoes, traveling with 11 people on an RV that sleeps 8, misestimating the correct…
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    Boxes and Arrows

  • Teaching/Learning UX: Considerations for Academic-Industry Partnerships

    Guiseppe Getto
    7 Oct 2014 | 1:00 am
    Higher education is poised to help produce the next generation of user experience designers, but we can’t do it alone. In the wake of Fred Beecher’s recent “Ending the UX Designer Drought” and studies by Onward Search, UserTesting, and the Nielsen Norman Group, it is clear that the UX market is booming and that UX designers enjoy a high level of job satisfaction. It is also clear that too few UX professionals exist to meet current demand. And while apprenticeship programs like Fred’s can help meet much of this demand, those of us in higher ed who have hitched our research, teaching,…
  • UX Researcher: A User’s Manual

    Victor Yocco
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:00 am
    This article is a guide on what to expect, and how to get the most from your UX researcher–a user manual, if you will. You will invest a lot in your researcher and you deserve the greatest return. You should have high expectations for this critical component of your UX team, and following the recommendations presented in this article will help maximize your return. A long and prosperous future Congratulations on hiring a user experience design researcher!  When maintained correctly, a full time researcher will give you many years of strategic insight and validation, eliciting oohs and…
  • Redesign Democracy: Dare to Think Big

    Dirk Knemeyer
    23 Sep 2014 | 1:00 am
    Why are you in UX? It probably isn’t to get rich. Yes, there is plenty of money in being a UX professional today. If you’re competent, you should be enjoying a very nice lifestyle. But we do this not for money–being on the business side would be far better at achieving that goal. We do it for creative reasons, expressive reasons, quality of life reasons, perhaps even altruistic reasons. Yet, despite the broader motivations we share for choosing our vocation, we are rarely the community that spawns big ideas. It is more likely to be the capitalist, the marketer, or even the…
  • Five Things They Didn’t Teach Me in School About Being a User Researcher

    Chelsey Glasson
    16 Sep 2014 | 1:00 am
    Graduate school taught me the basics of conducting user research, but it taught me little about what it’s like working as a user researcher in the wild. I don’t blame my school for this. There’s little publicly-available career information for user researchers, in large part because companies are still experimenting with how to best make use of our talents. That said, in the midst of companies experimenting with how to maximize user researchers, there are a few things I’ve learned specific to the role of user researcher that have held true across the diverse companies I’ve worked…
  • The Right Way to Do Lean Research

    Laura Klein
    26 Aug 2014 | 1:00 am
    StartX, a nonprofit startup accelerator, recently devoted an entire day to the role of design in early-stage companies. One panel included Laura Klein, Todd Zaki-Warfel, Christina Wodtke, and Mike Long. Each panelist had made their mark on how design is done in start-ups: Laura wrote the influential O’Reilly book on UX for Lean Startups, and Todd penned the bestselling Rosenfeld Media Prototyping book. Christina has been cross-teaching design to entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship to designers at institutions such as California College for the Arts, General Assembly, Copenhagen Institute of…
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  • 5 Ways the Foundation Community is Crushing It

    23 Oct 2014 | 10:59 am
    Foundation recently turned three years old. It is hard to believe how much it's changed especially considering it was the first responsive design framework first built in Sass and modular mixin partials, and the first to take a mobile-first approach. The code has changed a ton, but one thing hasn't changed throughout this time. The level of dedication and passion the people who use Foundation has constantly impressed us. Some of the biggest improvements to the framework since we launched Foundation 5, now known as Foundation for Sites, have come from our community. Despite having over 7,790…
  • The Problem With Design Thinking Is That I Still Don't Know What Design Thinking Is

    21 Oct 2014 | 12:03 pm
    Design is hot. Design executives are being tasked with being design-driven, but don't have the tools or processes to sustain this effort. They embrace design thinking, but it's unclear how their companies will embrace its ideas. VC's are telling founders to hire a design leader, but it's not clear who this mythical, unicorn person is who will drive the design approach across the company. It's entirely possible to grow this person in an organization, but not likely to be someone who comes in with magical fairy dust to make everything Apple-esque. Design thinking is a broad term with no…
  • Show Me the Responsibilities

    16 Oct 2014 | 10:00 am
    Cyndi Lauper was wrong when she said money changes everything. Well, wrong when it comes to designers. Of course, she probably wasn't talking about designers, but that's another story. When we surveyed designers on the reason they'd leave a job, we expected that money would be the number one answer. It wasn't. Designers said they'd bolt if there was no advancement. But what the heck did they mean by advancement? We did a follow up survey of 100 designers. Once again money took a backseat. The top answer was new skills training. Money came in number two, followed by more responsibilities.
  • Shortcut Foundation Layouts with Morse Code

    15 Oct 2014 | 11:00 am
    Let's face it: Building CSS grids can get complicated fast. Even using Foundation 5 — or what we call Foundation for Sites — sometimes finding that one stray </div> tag can be tricky. Today, we're launching a new way to build, share and store Foundation layouts: Morse Code, a shorthand lingo for Foundation grids. Here's an example: sg12lg04,sg12lg08|mg06lg12,mg06lg12 That's a row with four large columns, eight large columns, and another row of six and six large columns. As one of our designers pointed out, an entire page can become a tweet. At first glance it looks like…
  • Design Amazing Single-Page Apps with the New Foundation and Angular JS

    9 Oct 2014 | 10:30 am
    It's been a neat experience this last couple months reaching out and talking to some of our favorite Foundation fans. We've received some great feedback on our code for a new Flexbox-based grid. We've also had some great tips about our upcoming Motion UI codebase. We're getting ever closer to a comprehensive release that we just know y'all will love. In the final part of our three-part Foundation for Apps saga, we'll discuss our AngularJS Integration and how it helps you produce single-page web apps. So let's get into it. Designers have been building pages since the web began. All the tools…
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    UX Magazine

  • Quickpanel: More UX Futures

    Mary Jean Babic
    23 Oct 2014 | 6:00 am
    October 23, 2014UX Futures is a one-day virtual conference that will take place November 5. Hosted by Rosenfeld Media and Environments for Humans, the event features six inspiring speakers—Steve Krug, Jesse James Garrett, Margot Bloomstein, Andy Polaine, Nathan Shedroff and Abby Covert—all focusing on what’s next more By Mary Jean Babic              
  • Guidance for Conducting In-Home Studies with Children:An excerpt from Studying and Designing Technology for Domestic Life

    Elizabeth Foss, Mona Leigh Guha, Allison Druin
    22 Oct 2014 | 10:11 am
    October 22, 2014The following excerpt from chapter four of Studying and Designing Technology for Domestic Life: Lessons from Home from Morgan Kaufmann looks at some learnings from conducting in-home studies with children.In 2008, our team at the Human-Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL) at the University of Maryland formed a research partnership with Google when we were granted a Faculty Research Award to investigate how children search on the Internet. The goal of this partnership was loosely defined; we believed that children’s interactions with open-Internet search interfaces (i.e.
  • UX as the New SEO: an interview with Marianne Sweeny

    Jason Gillard
    21 Oct 2014 | 10:25 am
    October 21, 2014A deep passion for technology, accompanied by a complete ineptitude at programming, brought Marianne Sweeny to search engine optimization while studying Information Science at the University of Washington. She considers herself a Search Information Architect with a focus on human factors as well as system functionality.Sweeny joined Portent Inc as SR Search Strategist in 2012 where she focuses on the user experience factors of SEO for client sites. Previously, as Director of Search Services at Ascentium, she designed a search practice that brought a strategic approach to…
  • Five Movements in Design That We Should Pay Attention To

    Amy Cueva
    20 Oct 2014 | 8:37 am
    October 20, 2014Design is helping governments, organizations, and businesses improve the quality of interactions with the people they serve, leading to experiences that are more meaningful and effective. Business leaders understand now more than ever that continued focus on improving the customer journey is an imperative to designing products that win, satisfy their customers, and empower their employees. Savvy planners will consider these emerging movements as they look to the future:1. Maturation of the Design Discipline within OrganizationsMore and more, organizations are recognizing the…
  • Win This Book! Intertwingled

    UX Magazine Staff
    17 Oct 2014 | 9:21 am
    October 17, 2014Last week Peter Morville shared an excerpt from his new book Intertwingled: Information Changes Everything. Today, we're launching a contest to give away five copies. Answer the following question to enter:"How has your organization's culture changed you (or vice-versa)?"To give us your answer, visit our newsletter subscription page, fill out the required fields, enter your response to the contest question at the bottom of the form, and click "Subscribe to list." If you already subscribe to our newsletter, send an email with your answer to using…
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  • Usability Testing Is Undermining UX Design

    20 Oct 2014 | 4:31 am
    By Peter Hornsby Published: October 20, 2014 “I’ve recently had a number of conversations with designers that suggest their perception of usability testing is fundamentally wrong. … They believe that nothing can be known about a design that a team is going to implement unless that design has been tested with the target audience.” I’d be the first to admit that there are a lot of things that irritate me. These include, but are not limited to the following: people referring to a small, potent coffee as an “expresso” people saying “pacific”…
  • Keys to a Successful Digital Strategy: CapTech Ventures

    20 Oct 2014 | 4:27 am
    By Bill Rattner Published: October 20, 2014 “One of the major benefits of a modern digital strategy is its innate ability to centralize an organization’s numerous different operational facets. For any business, interdepartmental accountability is key to streamlined operations….” One of the major benefits of a modern digital strategy is its innate ability to centralize an organization’s numerous different operational facets. In other words, it gives us the ability to avoid the fragmented approach that we often encounter in the world of 21st century business. Why…
  • Persuading Clients That the Need for User Research and Usability Testing Is Real

    20 Oct 2014 | 4:23 am
    By Janet M. Six Published: October 20, 2014 Send your questions to Ask UXmatters and get answers from some of the top professionals in UX. In this edition of Ask UXmatters, our panel of UX experts discusses how to explain the need for user research and usability testing to a client who wonders why an expert review is not enough. I hope you enjoy this month’s lively discussion about the best ways to persuade a client that user research and usability testing are a necessary part of a project. Why is it essential for UX designers to rely on user research and usability testing? What value…
  • Introducing the Build-Measure-Learn Approach to an Analytics Tool’s Redesign

    20 Oct 2014 | 4:20 am
    By Stephanie Schuhmacher Published: October 20, 2014 “As UX professionals, we pride ourselves on making software that is human friendly and easy to use. But keeping the right balance between adding features that customers and users need and maintaining a clean, simple user interface design is often harder than it seems it should be.” As UX professionals, we pride ourselves on making software that is human friendly and easy to use. But keeping the right balance between adding features that customers and users need and maintaining a clean, simple user-interface design is often…
  • Bridging UX & Web Development: Better Results Through Team Integration

    20 Oct 2014 | 4:08 am
    By Jack Moffett Published: October 20, 2014 “A collaboration life cycle maps the activities of designers to those of the developers in each phase of a typical product development process. The cycle starts with requirements analysis….” This is a sample chapter from Jack Moffett’s new book, Bridging UX & Web Development: Better Results Through Team Integration. 2014 Morgan Kaufmann. Chapter 3: Collaboration Life Cycle Process. Regardless of what type of designer you are—graphic, information, interaction, service, industrial, game—you follow a common…
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    A List Apart: The Full Feed

  • Beyond You

    24 Oct 2014 | 5:30 am
    In client work, it’s our responsibility to ensure that our work lives beyond ourselves. Sometimes that means making sure the CMS can handle clients’ ever-changing business needs, or making sure it continually teaches its users. For clients with an internal development team that will be taking over after you, it means making sure the design system you create is flexible enough to handle changes, yet rigid enough to maintain consistency. Making your work live beyond you starts by changing your approach to design and development. Rather than defining and building a certain set of pages,…
  • Rian van der Merwe on A View from a Different Valley: How to Do What You Love, the Right Way

    23 Oct 2014 | 4:08 am
    Every time I start a new job I take my dad to see my office. He loves seeing where I work, and I love showing him. It’s a thing. As much as I enjoy this unspoken ritual of ours, there’s always a predictable response from my dad that serves as a clear indicator of our large generation gap. At some point he’ll ask a question along the lines of, “So… no one has an office? You just sit out here in the open?” I’ve tried many times to explain the idea of colocation and collaborative work, but I don’t think it’s something that will ever compute for him. This isn’t a criticism on…
  • Learning to Be Flexible

    22 Oct 2014 | 5:30 am
    As a freelancer, I work in a lot of different code repos. Almost every team I work with has different ideas of how code should be organized, maintained, and structured. Now, I’m not here to start a battle about tabs versus spaces or alphabetical order of CSS properties versus organizing in terms of concerns (positioning styles, then element layout styles, then whatever else), because I’m honestly not attached to any one system anymore. I used to be a one-tab kind of person, along with not really even thinking about the ordering of my properties, but slowly, over time, I’ve realized that…
  • The Specialized Web: Working with Subject-Matter Experts

    21 Oct 2014 | 7:00 am
    The time had come for The Big Departmental Website Redesign, and my content strategist heart was all aflutter. Since I work at a research university, the scope wasn’t just the department’s site—there were also 20 microsites focusing on specific faculty projects. Each one got an audit, an inventory, and a new strategy proposal. I met one-on-one with each faculty member to go over the plans, and they loved them. Specific strategy related to their users and their work! Streamlined and clarified content to help people do what needed doing! “Somebody pinch me,” I enthused after another…
  • Axiomatic CSS and Lobotomized Owls

    21 Oct 2014 | 7:00 am
    At CSS Day last June I introduced, with some trepidation, a peculiar three-character CSS selector. Called the “lobotomized owl selector” for its resemblance to an owl’s vacant stare, it proved to be the most popular section of my talk. I couldn’t tell you whether the attendees were applauding the thinking behind the invention or were, instead, nervously laughing at my audacity for including such an odd and seemingly useless construct. Perhaps I was unwittingly speaking to a room full of paid-up owl sanctuary supporters. I don’t know. The lobotomized owl selector looks like this:…
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    Jeffrey Zeldman Presents The Daily Report: Web Design News & Insights Since 1995

  • Blue Beanie Day Tees & Hoodies

    Jeffrey Zeldman
    23 Oct 2014 | 10:52 am
    JUST IN TIME for Blue Beanie Day 2014, I’ve teamed up with our friends at Cotton Bureau to bring you Blue Beanie Day Tees and Blue Beanie Day Hoodies. For sale at cost (no profit). Hurry! Only 14 days left to buy: The eighth annual Blue Beanie Day in support of web standards will be celebrated around the world on November 30, 2014.
  • Look Back in Angora

    Jeffrey Zeldman
    14 Oct 2014 | 10:53 am
    SATURDAY October 25 will be the 14th anniversary of my mother’s passing. Let’s honor it with this 2006 entry from the vaults of My Glamorous Life. Read: Hi, Mom!
  • A Sickroom With a View

    Jeffrey Zeldman
    12 Oct 2014 | 2:50 pm
    CHICAGO is a dynamite town, but it may not be the best place to recover from a cold. Since I arrived, my virus has gone from a 4 to an 11. There’s a spectacular view out my hotel window, which I’ve spent the day ignoring by sleeping. I have several nice friends in this town who I’m similarly ignoring, having canceled plans with them today because of this fershlugginer cold. I was flat on my back, sleeping, my phone like a cat on my chest, when my dad called this afternoon to recommend gargling with a three percent peroxide solution. My trainer texted a moment later to ixnay the…
  • 1,000 nerds

    Jeffrey Zeldman
    9 Oct 2014 | 8:33 am
    THE MODERN SOCIAL WEB is a miracle of progress but also a status-driven guilt-spewing shit volcano. Back in the 1990s—this will sound insane—we paid a lot of money for our tilde accounts, like $30 or $40 a month or sometimes much more. We paid to reach strangers with our weird ideas. Whereas now, as everyone understands, brands pay to know users. via Tilde.Club: I had a couple drinks and woke up with 1,000 nerds — The Message — Medium.
  • Afternoon Pages

    Jeffrey Zeldman
    5 Oct 2014 | 10:04 am
    SLEPT much of yesterday. Slept till 1 PM today. Whatever this bug is I’ve got, it lets me work and care for my child during the week, then flattens me all weekend. Fortunately my daughter can amuse herself for hours, as I could at her age. I hope she will not be as lonely as I was. Am.
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    Max Design

  • Links for light reading (23/10/14)

    22 Oct 2014 | 1:59 pm
    CSS Axiomatic CSS and Lobotomized Owls A Complete Guide to Flexbox Web Animation Infographics: A Map of the Best Animation Libraries for JavaScript and CSS3 plus Performance Tips CSS Post-Processing With Pleeease Grid by Example = simple usage examples for the CSS3 Grid Layout Module Responsive Responsive Images: The Ultimate Guide HTML5 Indie web building blocks Google and HTML/CSS Code Quality Intro to the HTML5 Speech Synthesis API General Code Responsibly It’s Time to Enable Two-Step Authentication on Everything. Here’s How. awesome-wpo = A curated list of Web Performance…
  • Links for light reading (16/10/14)

    15 Oct 2014 | 4:35 pm
    CSS CSS: It was twenty years ago today — an interview with Håkon Wium Lie Cascading HTML style sheets — a proposal Replacing Radio Buttons Without Replacing Radio Buttons Flexy Boxes – flexbox playground and code generator CSS, DRY, and Code Optimization Invert Colors Using CSS Responsive Wayfinding For The Mobile Web Working with Atomic Design (slidedeck) Including CSS in Jekyll imgix.js – Your toolbox for truly responsive images HTML5 To Picturefill, or not to Picturefill Polyfills and products SASS Contextual heading sizes with Sass 4 Sass Features You May Not Have…
  • Links for light reading (10/10/14)

    8 Oct 2014 | 12:29 pm
    General Sit the test 20 More Docs and Guides for Front-End Developers WebPlate Framework Responsive The Next Big Thing In Responsive Design Froont – responsive tool CSS Spacing elements CSS Performance Tooling CSS shapes in email 16 CSS3 Selectors You Should Know CSS URL Rewriter Animating Images With CSS Keyframes Flat UI colors SASS Managing Color Values with Sass Top 5 Sass mistakes UX When users leave the search box empty… Collaborative User Testing: Less Bias, Better Research UX Companion Accessibility Notes on fixing incorrect table structure using ARIA PDF accessibility…
  • Links for light reading (1/10/14)

    1 Oct 2014 | 1:56 am
    Responsive And You Thought Responsive Text Was Just a Fad? Size Matters: Balancing Line Length And Font Size In Responsive Web Design CSS Creating a Collection of CSS3 Animated Pre-loaders Better font-face with Font Load Events How the iPhone has evolved in pure CSS On Declaration Sorting in CSS Material Design for Bootstrap SASS Using Sass with Jekyll Beware of Selector Nesting in Sass Accessibility 3 types of relationships and what they mean for accessibility Vestibular Issues in Parallax Design JavaScript Midnight JS async vs defer attributes 10 Useful Fullscreen Background jQuery Plugins…
  • Links for light reading (24/9/14)

    24 Sep 2014 | 1:14 am
    General exercism – The devil is in the details The magical command line CSS Introducing CCSS (Component CSS) Getting Started with CSS Shapes CSS Audits: Taking Stock of Your Code HTML Pup – a command line tool for processing HTML Don’t use picture (most of the time) SASS Join the Sass revolution Accessibility Accessible HTML video as a background 8 Steps to Creating Accessible Video Text alternatives for images with captions The form field validation trick they don’t want you to know JavaScript fake-identity Preparing for ECMAScript 6: New Array Methods ParticleGround…
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    Putting people firstPutting people first

  • Should more banks acquire UX design firms?

    25 Oct 2014 | 7:57 am
    Underscoring the importance of a great customer experience, Capital One has acquired the San Francisco-based design and user experience firm, Adaptive Path. Is this a testing of the waters by a historically innovative financial institution … or the beginning of an industry trend? Joel Oxman, VP Business Development of Extractable [a digital strategy and user-experience design agency in San Francisco that specializes in helping Financial Services clients succeed online], explores the matter in more detail. “Why is the financial services industry so slow to respond? The hesitation…
  • Report outlines future of UK social design research

    25 Oct 2014 | 7:36 am
    Social Design Futures: HEI Research and the AHRC By Armstrong, Leah, Jocelyn Bailey, Guy Julier, Lucy Kimbell University of Brighton and Victoria and Albert Museum October 2014, 84 pages The UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) has just published a report exploring social design research in the UK. The report scrutinises the future of social design research at a time when its relevance is growing rapidly as a result of policy shifts towards more open government structures and increased visibility of strategic design thinking and social innovation, and a wider context of…
  • Experientia president to speak at User Friendly 2014 in China

    25 Oct 2014 | 7:09 am
    Experientia president Michele Visciola is one of the keynote speakers at User Friendly 2014, the annual user experience conference of UXPA China, to be held in Wuxi, China, 13 to 16 November. The theme of the 11th conference is the “new era of the experience economy,” thus underlining the importance of transferring UX concepts and practices to industries and fields, and of shifting R&D from a manufacturing-oriented focus to a service-oriented one. Other keynote speakers are Rong Tao, president of UXPA China and Chief Experience Officer, Ping An Financial Technology Co., Ltd;…
  • Hospitable Hospice, Redesigning Care for Tomorrow

    19 Oct 2014 | 2:41 am
    Design for good death Hospitable Hospice, Redesigning Care for Tomorrow An IDEA 2014 Award winner research project Free download: issuu, pdf Existing healthcare systems can make the end-of-life experience more frustrating and undignified. The Lien Foundation and ACM Foundation (Singapore) in collaboration with fuelfor design consultants have published an experience design handbook, pdf). Its aim is to raise the universal standard of hospices, the service providers of end-of-life care. Hospices suffer a poor image. They deserve to be better understood by society, to become a welcomed part of…
  • Event: Why the world needs anthropologists

    19 Oct 2014 | 2:12 am
    An upcoming event is encouraging anthropologists to “come out of their ivory towers” and work more closely with their colleagues in the field, in order to bridge the gap between “pure” and “applied” anthropology. The international symposium “Why the world needs anthropologists” (Facebook page) will be held on 5 December 2014 in Padua, Italy. Experientia president Michele Visciola will be one of three speakers at the free symposium. He will reflect on the conference aim of erasing the boundaries between “pure” and “applied” anthropology, and presenting…
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  • October #UX newsletter out soon!

    24 Oct 2014 | 3:33 am
    Coming soon to an inbox near you: the October edition of our UX newsletter. If you're not a subscriber yet, please sign-up now. ...and, while you're at it, why not subscribe to our blog's RSS feed too?
  • Mapillary

    24 Oct 2014 | 3:27 am
    Mapillary lets you construct Street View-like panoramas from your own photos and integrate them into OpenStreetmap: [via prosthetic knowledge]
  • Drone Racing Star Wars Style

    24 Oct 2014 | 3:12 am
    As prosthetic knowledge says, this was bound to happen... [via]
  • Dangerous Popsicles

    23 Oct 2014 | 2:10 pm
    Dangerous Popsicles explore the "aesthetics of user-unfriendliness". They are "a collection of weird shaped popsicles inspired by cacti and life-threatening viruses".
  • Aposematic Jacket

    23 Oct 2014 | 2:04 pm
    Created by Shinseungback Kimyonghun, Aposematic Jacket is "a wearable computer for self-defence". When the wearer pushes a button upon facing a threat, it "records the scene in 360 degrees and sends the images to the Web":
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  • iPhone 6 Speed Test

    24 Oct 2014 | 9:23 am
    This speed test between the iPhone 6, the Galaxy S5, and the HTC One (M8) shows Apple’s newest handset roundly beating the others. I don’t usually link to this kind of technical content because I don’t have a ton of value to add on these topics. I’m also relatively unfamiliar with speed measurement techniques; this… Advertise on
  • This Is Not a Conspiracy Theory

    23 Oct 2014 | 5:34 pm
    A new series from Kirby Ferguson, the prolific video essayist behind the fantastic series “Everything Is a Remix.” Released episodically as new installments are completed, “This Is Not a Conspiracy Theory” examines “the quest to understand the hidden forces shaping our lives.” The first episode is free, but a US$15 subscription is required to view… Advertise on
  • Thomas Dagg’s Star Wars Series

    23 Oct 2014 | 3:16 pm
    Heretically, I always roll my eyes a bit when grown adults express their excessive affection for the “Star Wars” franchise. I like the original trilogy fine, but I just find my generation’s preoccupation with it to be a little absurd, especially when articulated as elaborate homages on the Internet. Nevertheless, once in a while, a… Advertise on
  • Postscript for Ben Bradlee of The Washington Post

    22 Oct 2014 | 3:46 pm
    David Remnick’s eulogy for the great Ben Bradlee, the former executive editor of The Washington Post who oversaw its Pentagon Papers and Watergate chapters, and who died Tuesday at ninety-three, is an aptly magnificent remembrance for a magnificent titan of the last century. It’s short but it’s full of pithy, illuminating anecdotes about Bradlee as… Advertise on
  • Aerial Bold

    22 Oct 2014 | 9:12 am
    This Kickstarter project aims to create “the first map and typeface of the earth” from satellite imagery that happens to form familiar letterforms. If funded, project creators Benedikt Groß and Joey Lee intend to create a set of computer vision-driven tools and a database that will automatically identify characters—much more ambitious than I had assumed.… Advertise on
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    UsabilityBlog » UsabilityBlog

  • Required Reading – The End Of Apps As We Know Them

    24 Oct 2014 | 9:35 am
    My colleague, former Microsoftie and Sage-ite Steve Cover, posted a link to a thought provoking article on Titled “The End Of Apps As We Know Them“, it claims that designers and developers need to focus more on designing apps as systems that interact with other applications and OS’es, and less as stand-alone destinations. It’s basically an argument for focusing on workflow, which as a UX designer and researcher makes me very happy. Some of the implications of their claims are almost mind-blowing. Here’s just one. From the article: “Responsive…
  • 2003 Called…It Wants Its Error Message Back

    17 Oct 2014 | 6:38 am
    File this under “anti-pattern”… here’s an error message I received from a web application when I clicked on something after I exceeded the automatic log out timer but the page didn’t refresh. Obviously this message is ugly and rude, but what else is happening here? Here’s a quick tally: 1. Dev-speak. Most of the message is clearly written for debugging purposes. Why show this to the end users, who in this case are students, instructors, and instructional designers? 2. Who’s the audience? While most of the content is directed at developers and QA…
  • Required Reading – Hunting Unicorns

    15 Oct 2014 | 6:51 am
    My colleague and friend Patrick Neeman just posted a great presentation about the skillsets and competencies of effective UX practitioners. Why it’s required reading: 1. Patrick frames the problem: that is, there’s no single entry point or path into a UX career. Consequently, practitioners who identify as “UX practitioners” have wildly different skillsets and competencies. 2. He provides a very useful visual model of user experience competencies, and shows how the different sub-specialties map to the model. 3. He explicitly identifies the soft skills necessary to be an…
  • eBay Made Me Think…But Not In A Good Way

    17 Mar 2014 | 8:46 am
    [Note: this is a repost from the old UsabilityBlog. I'm just moving some "greatest hits" over to the new site.] Disclaimer: I am a user and fan of eBay. Just check out my profile – I’m a long time buyer/seller. When it comes to user experience, they do lots of things right. Here’s one thing they did wrong: They provided half-hearted, linkless “help” in the form of “to do x, go to [place A] or [place B]“, without including links to those locations. This is a no-brainer and should’ve been coded ages ago. As a result, I had to hunt around for a small but still-annoying…
  • Don’t Make Me Register First

    14 Mar 2014 | 7:59 am
    It’s 2014. Does anyone running an ecommerce site really think it’s a good idea to make people register for an account before allowing them to shop? I mean c’mon, any e-tailer with a lick of sense knows about lazy registration and guest-only checkout, right? Not this company. Here’s how I found this gem: while wasting time on Facebook I noticed an ad for mid-century furniture and (gasp) actually /clicked/ on an ad. First time I can remember doing that. And you know why I did? Because we’re actually shopping for furniture right now and we like mid-century stuff.
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    Veerle's blog

  • Interieur 2014

    Veerle Pieters
    24 Oct 2014 | 4:32 am
    On Tuesday I took a little road trip to something I always look forward to. It’s a biannual event that takes place at the Kortrijk Xpo. You could say it’s our 'Milan design week'. 24rd Biennale Kortrijk really has become the center of design thanks to the Biennale Interieur. This year marks the 24th edition since it all started in 1968. It’s 10 days with 40.000m² of design across 6 halls from 300 selected brands. There is also a side track (that premiered in 2012) that runs in the city center on the Buda island where you can find the Budalab, Ventura Interieur platform and the expo…
  • Jo Stool

    Veerle Pieters
    17 Oct 2014 | 6:43 am
    Lovely wooden chair with crossed j-shaped legs.
  • Metropol Kurier

    Veerle Pieters
    14 Oct 2014 | 1:54 am
    Illustration for 10 years of Metropol Kurier based in Basel. Bellissimo!via Riccardo Guasco
  • Citizens 3638

    Veerle Pieters
    14 Oct 2014 | 1:50 am
    Album Anatomy is an exploration in the art of reduction.via Album Anatomy
  • GoBicycle - Connect

    Veerle Pieters
    14 Oct 2014 | 1:41 am
    Keep it simple and make it awesome.via Warvick Kay
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    UIE Brain Sparks

  • UIEtips: Hiring a UX Pro – 4 Techniques from Smart Teams

    Jared Spool
    22 Oct 2014 | 10:45 am
    In this week’s UIEtips, we reprint an article. In it, I share ideas on how to hire the best UX professional. I also make the case that hiring the right person is the most important factor to a UX team’s success. Here’s an excerpt from the article: Hiring is not a natural process. It needs to be designed, just like any experience. In our research, we learned that most teams amble into the hiring process by copying actions from others or by inventing wacky steps. Read the article: Hiring a UX Pro – 4 Techniques from Smart Teams. How do you get the most out of your UX hiring process?
  • Designing Interactions Between Devices, a November 6 Virtual Seminar

    Adam Churchill
    22 Oct 2014 | 6:40 am
    Join us on November 6 when Josh Clark presents, Designing Interactions Between Devices. There’s untapped magic in the gaps between gadgets. Businesses lose money in those gaps between gadgets, and customers lose patience. Instead, imagine moving effortlessly from device to device without interruption, throwing content from one to another, or shaking a transaction from your phone to your laptop. The technology we need to build tomorrow’s interactions is already here in our pockets, handbags, and living rooms. Tear down device silos Enable magical interactions between devices…
  • Aviva Rosenstein – Working with UX in an Agile Environment

    Sean Carmichael
    16 Oct 2014 | 11:46 am
    [ Transcript Available ] Integrating UX into an Agile workflow has historically been a bit of a challenge. This could be due to a general lack of communication with the development team, or not feeling like the proper time or value is given to UX within the organization. Through her research, Aviva Rosenstein discovered that many problems people were having are commonplace. Additionally, she found that others had actually already worked out solutions to some of these. In her virtual seminar, Making UX Work with Agile Scrum Teams, Aviva discusses the position of UX on Agile teams and some of…
  • UIEtips: Embracing the Medium

    Jared Spool
    16 Oct 2014 | 11:15 am
    In this week’s UIEtips, we reprint an article. In it, Richard Rutter discusses the web and its role as a medium. Richard argues that we should consider the fact that a user can shape their experience as a strength rather than a weakness. Here’s an excerpt from the article: The wonderful thing about the web is that it takes many forms and those forms can be shaped by the reader to his or her benefit. That is a strength not a weakness; a feature not a bug. The control which print designers have – and so often desire when they transition to the web – is a limitation of the…
  • Mobile Research Techniques: Beyond the Basics, Our October 23rd Virtual Seminar

    Adam Churchill
    10 Oct 2014 | 12:28 pm
    Studying mobile use in context can be tricky. Some desktop research strategies translate easily to mobile, but if you want to capture the way people really use mobile devices, you’re gonna need a bigger toolbox. Cyd Harrell has the insider’s scoop on how to design and execute mobile research that gets you the most usable data for your money—in the lab or out in the field. Sign up for Cyd’s seminar now. Conduct mobile research in the lab Do mobile research in the field Deepen your research with long-term studies Choose and use participants—for optimal results Can’t join us…
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    90 Percent of Everything - by Harry Brignull

  • UX Brighton 2014: 10% off!

    Harry Brignull
    30 Sep 2014 | 2:49 am
    Good news everyone – I’ve secured a 10% off discount code for UX Brighton 2014. Enter “90percent” at the checkout. This code works for all ticket types – if you use it now you’ll get an early bird ticket for £116.10+vat (Standard price is £149+vat). Maybe I’ll see you there? Buy your ticket now ›
  • Some Dark Patterns now illegal in UK – interview with Heather Burns

    Harry Brignull
    26 Aug 2014 | 2:51 am
    In this article I interview Heather Burns, author of The Web Designer’s Guide to the Consumer Rights Directive. So, which dark patterns are now illegal in the UK? The EU’s new consumer rights law bans certain dark patterns related to e-commerce across Europe. The “sneak into basket” pattern is now illegal. Full stop, end of story. You cannot create a situation where additional items and services are added by default. No more having to manually remove insurance from your basket when purchasing plane tickets. Hidden costs are now illegal, whether that’s an undeclared…
  • So you want to be a UX freelancer?

    Harry Brignull
    25 Jul 2014 | 3:15 am
    People sometimes ask me for advice about getting into User Experience freelancing. Is it enjoyable? Is it worth it? Is it good money? The fact is, the answer to all these things entirely depends on you and the way you choose to run your business. Let me explain… Are you experienced? To be a UX practitioner as an employee, you only need to be good at UX. To do it as a freelancer, you need more skills. Most importantly, you also need to be able to cope with difficult business situations without panicking. What do you do when a client tries to get you do work you don’t agree with? How do you…
  • User Experience and Jobs To be Done

    Harry Brignull
    25 May 2014 | 4:42 am
    In the field of UX, we’re all pretty familiar with the concept of behavioural personas, but not everyone is aware of the parallels between this and Clayton Christensen’s “Jobs To Be Done” theory which became famous in his 1997 book The Innovator’s Dilemma. He explains it quite nicely in this Press Publish interview: Here I am. I have characteristics that slot me into demographic segments. I just turned 60. I’m 6 feet 8. We just sent our youngest daughter off to Columbia. I have all kinds of characteristics. But none of these characteristics or attributes have yet caused me…
  • Create your own Mac-based usability testing lab with viewing room

    Harry Brignull
    17 Jan 2014 | 5:07 am
    I’m currently consulting at The Telegraph where I’ve set up a new usability testing lab for the UX team here (by the way, they’re hiring at the moment). It’s a nice, simple lab set-up and I thought I’d share the details with you. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution to usability testing labs. The UX team at The Telegraph is Mac-based, which puts Techsmith’s Morae out of the question. Telestream’s Wirecast would be a decent Mac alternative, but it was really unreliable on the MacBooks I tested it on, putting it out of the picture. After some…
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  • Program for K-5

    9 Oct 2014 | 10:12 am now has an elementary school program (Kindergarden - 5th grade), and Code Studio for the program looks like its modeled after the free MIT Scratch app, a visual tool that we used with our first son to introduce computer science fundamentals a few years ago. Good stuff.
  • Aral Balkan: “I, Simulation"

    29 Sep 2014 | 11:25 am
    Aral Balkan’s “I, Simulation” talk about the current state of privacy and freedom in software and services is one the best presentations I’ve watched this year. Balkan talks about business models that focus on user data, and what that can mean to your "privacy." Watch the talk below, given at Open Exchange in Munich, Germany. The information you hand over using service providers like Facebook (think also Messenger, Whatsapp, Instagram) and Google (think also Gmail, Hangouts, Android Devices, Drive, Nest, Dropcam, and Fiber) is already being used to create simulations of you, and he…
  • Dedesign the Web 2

    26 Sep 2014 | 11:32 am
    Head to Dedesign the Web and play name that website using wireframes. Courtesy of Designation.
  • Des Traynor: Product Strategy is About Saying No

    24 Sep 2014 | 10:03 am
    The devil runs UX workshops for idle hands, and he comes up with bad features. This is Des Traynor's lightning talk at Business of Software in 2013. He did an extended version of this in 2014, but the pecha kucha version gets to the heart of the topic.
  • AniJS: Declarative handling library for CSS animations

    5 Sep 2014 | 8:38 am
    AniJS is a library for CSS animations that allows you to write simple statements for handling animation as key/value pairs in html data attributes. It feels very close to writing natural language statements, in a format that is a bit more familiar in code than writing sentences. A simple example contains IF, ON, DO, and TO pairs and would look like this: <input id="name" type="text" data-anijs="if: focus, do: wobble, to: p"> Really nice and an easy technique for prototyping. Check it out.
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    The UX Booth

  • Designing for Dyslexia (Part 1)

    Andrew Zusman
    21 Oct 2014 | 6:30 am
    There are fifty-two cards in a standard deck of cards, and we are tasked with putting them in order, whatever that might mean to us. We might choose to simply place the cards into two piles: blacks and reds, and leave it at that. Alternatively, we could separate these two piles into two further piles: hearts and diamonds for the red cards, and spades and clubs for the black cards. Adding another layer of complexity, it is possible to arrange each of these four piles into numerical order from ace to king. If this deck of cards were handed to a random person, the expectation is that the user…
  • The UX Booth Newsletter

    Jon Phillips
    16 Oct 2014 | 7:22 pm
    Each week we wrap up our articles and best finds from across the web. We would love to have the chance to share that with you. Please enter your email below to subscribe. Subscribe Subscriber Goodies We put together a few freebies for our subscribers. In your first email you’ll receive the following: 15% off any Rosenfeld Media purchase 25% off any printed Smashing Book 15% off any UXPin plan 3 free months of InVisionApp’s Starter Plan Past Newsletter
  • Web 2.0, Web 3.0, and the Internet of Things

    Kim Morrow
    14 Oct 2014 | 6:30 am
    The internet has become an integrated, seamless, and often invisible part of our everyday lives. Some see this connection as a way to a brighter future, while others have trepidations. The only thing that seems certain is that the Internet is changing rapidly, the laws surrounding the Internet are changing even faster, and it’s all we can do to try and keep up. Changes in style, design, and interactions across the web have big implications for users, but even bigger implications for us as creators. While we often highlight the importance of connecting our design to the big picture goal,…
  • Privacy

    Matthew Kammerer
    12 Oct 2014 | 6:55 am
    This privacy policy discloses the privacy practices for UX Booth ( This privacy policy applies solely to information collected by this web site. It will notify you of the following: What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the web site, how it is used and with whom it may be shared. What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information. Information Collection, Use, and Sharing We are the sole owners of…
  • Putting the “Twingle” in Information Architecture

    UX Booth
    7 Oct 2014 | 6:30 am
    The “polar bear book” is considered by many to be the information architecture bible. Officially titled “Information Architecture for the World Wide Web,” but nicknamed for its cover image, the book covers everything from navigation to metadata, aesthetics to technical issues. Now, 16 years after his famous book came out, author Peter Morville is making waves with a fresh look at IA in his new book: Intertwingled. We’re very excited to have an opportunity to interview Peter about his new book, as well as his perspective on the field of information architecture in general. What’s…
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    UX Movement

  • Why You Should Remove Orphans from Your Body Text

    21 Oct 2014 | 10:34 am
    Did you know that the way your body text wraps can affect how users read it? Orphans are short lines that appear at the end of a paragraph. You should remove them from your body text because they affect the readability and aesthetics of a web page.When users read lines of body text, they build up a reading rhythm. Orphans interrupt the user’s reading rhythm and cause an awkward ending. The shortness of the last line makes finishing the paragraph feel abrupt. You can even hear how disjointed an orphan sounds by reading the paragraph aloud. A good paragraph should flow from beginning to…
  • Dash: Build Custom Dashboards with Your Personal Data

    14 Oct 2014 | 6:01 am
    Tired of opening new tabs and logging into different accounts to get all the information you need? Having all your personal data on a dashboard would make it less frustrating. You’d be able to view all your information at a glance on one screen.Dash gives you the power to build your own dashboards with the data you choose. Add widgets from popular web services or custom data sources to your dashboard and get real-time updates. No more opening a bunch of tabs or logging into different accounts to get the information you need.Share your dashboards with others or keep it private. If you have a…
  • 10 Ways to Build Trust on Your Landing Page

    Julia Rozwens
    7 Oct 2014 | 6:09 am
    Imagine walking into a small and crowded store full of junk. A shop clerk hassles you into buying something you don’t want. If this happened, you’d leave fast and look for another store. You automatically lose trust when others pressure you to make fast decisions in a hostile environment. The web is no different.The web is full of people offering services and products. Users need to first trust you in order for them to even consider buying your product or service. The list below shows 10 popular ways to add credibility and build trust on your landing page. Combine a few of them or use…
  • CodeinWP: Turn Your Design into a WordPress Theme

    30 Sep 2014 | 9:43 am
    [This sponsored post helps support UX Movement. Thank you for reading.]What most designers do best is design. Coding the design is a different story. When clients hire someone to design their website, they expect to get a product that not only works, but is easy-to-use. Handing them a Photoshop design file (PSD) isn’t going to cut it.What your client needs is a WordPress theme of your design. WordPress is the easiest content management system to use. Clients who aren’t tech-savvy can update and edit their site without your help. But without a WordPress developer, you lose the opportunity…
  • How to Avoid Client Headache as a Freelance Designer

    17 Sep 2014 | 9:19 am
    Managing clients is a big part of freelancing. Many freelance designers have their own way of working with clients. But a lot of them do it in a way that works against them. Here are a few things I do differently that allows me to work with clients without headache.What to Include in the ContractBefore you begin working on a project, you should make it clear to the client that they’re responsible for responding to you. Sometimes you will deal with clients who give you radio silence. The legal contract you give them to sign should allow you to end the project if the client fails to respond…
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    Project6 Design: Bay Area UI Design Firm

  • Winning Streak Continues: Project6 Design Wins Three More Awards

    21 Oct 2014 | 11:22 am
    web_awards_2014.png San Francisco Bay Area website design and development firm, Project6 Design, has received three Standard of Excellence awards in the 2014 WebAwards competition. The designs recognized in the Web Marketing Association’s annual competition were The Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation, Biscoff, and DeLeon Realty websites -- three diverse categories of industry that highlight the award-winning design firm’s ability to create exceptional work that appeals to all audiences.The WebAwards honor those who challenge the boundaries of design and set higher standards for internet…
  • Project6 Design Wins Two 2014 Communicator Awards For Excellence In Website Design and Development

    29 May 2014 | 12:11 pm
    pdf_logo_colour2.gif San Francisco Bay Area graphic design firm, Project6 Design, is proud to announce that they have won two new honors from the 20th Annual Communicator Awards in the Charitable Organizations/non-profit and Food & Beverage website categories. The new website created for the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation was presented with a Silver Communicator Award of Distinction. Additionally, they won another Silver Communicator Award of Distinction for the web design and development work with Biscoff Bakeries.The Communicator Awards honors work that transcends innovation and…
  • Project6 Design Wins Innovation and Visual Design Award for Food & Beverage Responsive Website

    Christine M.
    23 Jan 2014 | 12:44 pm
    pixel-award-bay-area-news.png San Francisco Bay Area graphic design firm Project6 Design won the Pixel Award competition’s Food & Beverage category for the design and development of the Biscoff website.Pixel Award judges look for a creative and technical blend of impeccable graphic design, artistry, technological expertise, and a powerful, stimulating user experience. This year, for the 8th Annual Pixel Awards, they selected applications and sites against the following criteria:Innovation – The app or site must bring something new to the table, break barriers.Content – All the…
  • Project6 Design Launches Interactive Website Feature for the California HealthCare Foundation

    Christine M.
    20 Dec 2013 | 4:12 pm
    chcf_lean_teaser_230x140.jpg Project6 Design, a San Francisco Bay Area graphic design firm, launched an interactive feature for the “Lean” health care management model on the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) website.The health care industry is sitting up and taking notice of the Lean process: an approach that leverages the talents and skills of those closest to a health care problem to help fix it. CHCF wanted to present the stories and successes of the Lean model and its integration into hospitals in a fresh, engaging online format.Project6 concepted a feature that follows the…
  • Six Smart Tips for Website Success

    Christine M.
    26 Nov 2013 | 2:34 pm
    project6_logo_transparent.png Want a website that works a bit harder? Consider these six simple pieces of practical wisdom from award-winning design agency Project6 Design that apply across all industries—from B2B and high tech, to educational institutions, government, and non-profit.1. Step into your users’ shoes.When was the last time you asked your constituents what they wanted from your website? Try it: create a focus group. Hear what they want from your brand, your product, your services, and your website. Excellent website design will strike an engaging balance between what visitors…
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    Baymard Institute

  • Form Usability: The Pitfalls of Inline Accordion and Tab Designs

    Jamie Appleseed
    20 Oct 2014 | 10:03 pm
    During our e-commerce research studies, particularly on checkout usability, we’ve found that tab-style and inline accordion form layouts can inadvertently confuse users, or even flat out violate their expectations. The issue arises when users can’t figure out which form fields will be submitted – whether it is only the fields in the currently active inline accordion or tab “sheet”, or whether the collapsed “sheets” will be submitted as well. In this article we’ll dive into the observations from our test sessions, highlight the issues and design…
  • Fixing Bugs – the Next 'Big Thing' in E-Commerce?

    Jamie Appleseed
    6 Oct 2014 | 10:24 pm
    Technical errors can obviously be highly problematic as they can prevent the user from proceeding. Here Amazon is asking the user to fix a problem that isn’t there. Bugs can be pure poison to e-commerce sites. Layout bugs and flawed interactive features not only leaves a poor impression on users but can in some cases even lead them to think the site has been hacked. Page errors and site maintenance are even more disruptive as they can outright prevent users from proceeding. During our usability studies we repeatedly get to observe just how impatient and unforgiving users are of such…
  • Form Usability: Validations vs Warnings

    Jamie Appleseed
    22 Sep 2014 | 11:34 pm
    There’s a major difference between form validations and warnings. Form validations enforce a set of rules and won’t allow the user to proceed, while warnings alert the user about possible problems but will allow them to proceed. While e-commerce sites would do well in adopting both strategies, it’s unfortunately few that make use of warnings (our checkout benchmark study found that 64% don’t have ‘address warnings’), and similarly regrettable we often observe sites enforcing overly restrictive form validations that completely block a (small) sub-group from…
  • Faceted Sorting - A New Method for Sorting Search Results

    Jamie Appleseed
    1 Sep 2014 | 11:26 pm
    This is the sixth in a series of articles on e-commerce search that draw on findings from our recent search usability report and benchmark. Trying to sort site-wide search results on most e-commerce sites typically end up a mess, with irrelevant search results being propelled to the top of the list as users sort by price, customer ratings, etc – something that left the test subjects bewildered during our latest usability study on e-commerce search. This is because sorting search results by attributes based on anything other than relevance very often cause low-quality results moving to the…
  • External Article: The Current State of E-Commerce Search

    Baymard Institute
    18 Aug 2014 | 5:14 am
    On-site search pages of top grossing US e-commerce sites – you can find all 50 usability evaluations in our e-commerce search benchmark database. In today’s article, we’ll go over 7 guidelines from the E-Commerce Search Usability report. The article is published as a guest post at Smashing Magazine and explores 7 key aspects of the user’s on-site search experience in an e-commerce context. The article also includes an analysis of the current state of e-commerce search based in-depth usability reviews of 50 top e-commerce sites: The Current State of E-Commerce Search…
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    The UX Bookmark

  • Colour Contrast Analyser

    Abhay Rautela
    2 Oct 2014 | 1:03 am
    The Colour Contrast Analyser (CCA) helps you determine the legibility of text and the contrast of visual elements, such as graphical controls and visual indicators. This tool provides two useful core functionalities: It provides a pass/fail assessment against Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 color contrast success criteria. It simulates certain visual conditions such as including dichromatic color-blindness and cataracts, to demonstrate how your web content appears to people with less than 20/20 vision. The CCA is available for Windows and Mac, and in multiple languages…
  • Flat vs. Deep Website Hierarchies

    Abhay Rautela
    23 Sep 2014 | 10:01 pm
    Information can be organized in either flat or deep hierarchies; both have their advantages and pitfalls. Should your website’s hierarchy be flat or deep? Like most design questions, there’s no single right answer, and going too far to either extreme will backfire. Flat hierarchies tend to work well if you have distinct, recognizable categories, because people don’t have to click through as many levels. When users know what they want, simply get out of the way and let them find it. But there are exceptions to every rule. In some situations, there are simply too many…
  • An Optimized The UX Bookmark Experience across Desktop, Mobile & Tablet

    Abhay Rautela
    2 Sep 2014 | 6:06 am
    The UX Bookmark has always looked great on the desktop. And now, it’s going to look equally great on the mobile and tablet. For getting this done, I had to learn how to create responsive sites and did it, just as I enthusiastically took the task of making WordPress act as a custom CMS for The UX Bookmark many years ago. Know that I am not a developer so I am pretty happy with all of it. With that said, go ahead and enjoy accessing The UX Bookmark from any device. Feedback is welcome. The next step is for me to optimize The UX Bookmark for wide screens. By the way, I notice that the site…
  • DSIA Portal of Information Architecture

    Abhay Rautela
    31 Aug 2014 | 9:58 pm
    The DSIA Portal of Information Architecture provides a public body of knowledge that offers educational and technical content to the general public, business stakeholders, information architects, as well as user experience design practitioners whose responsibilities include or must consider the organizational function of information architecture. DSIA portal of Information Architecture
  • Google Maps Design Secrets Revealed

    Abhay Rautela
    12 Aug 2014 | 4:39 am
    Google Maps launched in 2005 and it was a revolution: you could go to your desktop browser, click and drag a map with a mouse and watch it render smoothly and quickly. Before then, you usually had to click arrows at the edge of a map in order to pan it, and wait for it to load. Google Maps’ ‘fishbone’ zoom controls predominated the map; after all, screen resolutions were small, and double-clicking the map would re-centre it rather than zoom into it. Beside the map, a column of suggested searches and instructions took over one third of the screen’s width. Oh, and it…
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    UserZoom zooming in on the customer experience

  • 7 Reasons for Working with a Mobile Usability Testing Software

    21 Oct 2014 | 2:49 pm
    Why should you use a remote research tool for conducting mobile studies? Even if you are a user experience (UX) researcher who has done only a couple of mobile studies, you can attest to the challenges of creating, executing, analyzing and reporting them. The complicated tasks of screen recording, behavioral and gestural data gathering as well as capturing quantitative metrics are exacerbated by the small screen and restricted space of movement. Capturing mobile research data requires having sophisticated recording software that comes in the way of users freely using the mobile device. After…
  • 4 Questions answered about Online Usability Testing

    21 Oct 2014 | 11:45 am
    Over the past few years, many customers have asked us to share more information and insight into how Online Usability Testing works. To those of you who already are experts in what we’re about to discuss, this article may not teach you much that you don’t already know, but to those of you who are new to this type of research, please read on as it will give you a new perspective on where the User Experience is headed next. 1. What is Online Usability Testing? One of the most common types of online usability studies is a ‘task-based online study’. In an online, task-based study,…
  • Experience UserZoom’s Newly Redesigned Web & Mobile Site

    20 Oct 2014 | 9:08 am
    We have some exciting news to share! We recently redesigned our website. In order for a redesign to be highly effective, it must stem from the understanding of what works for users and what doesn’t. It’s only natural that an organization’s needs change over time and users’ needs do, too. Within this redesign, our aim was to respond to these needs and create a simpler, more pleasant experience on our web and mobile site. Going beyond just creating a new look & feel, Some highlights include: An all-in-one, worry-free solution to manage UX Within our new site learn…
  • The Importance of Knowing the User Intent When Conducting Behavior Analysis

    15 Oct 2014 | 11:45 am
        When trying to understand customers’ behaviors on a website, it’s necessary to know what their intent is. Why are customers coming to the site?  What are they trying to do? Web analytics solutions, such as Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics, will provide statistics on web traffic including number of visitors, page views, bounce rates, where visitors are going etc., but not the purpose for the visit.  Other tools, such as Clicktale or Crazy Egg, provide visual information with recordings of mouse movements, heatmaps of where visitors are clicking or scroll maps, but again…
  • Conducting True Intent Studies to Manage Online Customer Experience

    15 Oct 2014 | 11:41 am
    Have you ever wondered what people do when they visit your site? Are they accomplishing what they came for? Did they have a positive experience while they were there? Would they recommend your site to a friend or colleague? Managing the Customer Experience is the top priority for most companies. If you’re a CX Professional, you know that one of the most effective ways to do this is by engaging with the customer, giving them a voice and collecting as much structured feedback as possible. In fact, you are probably aware that your visitors are a great, if not the greatest, source for ideas.
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    My take on UX research and design

  • Psychology of online shopping: Men vs Women

    25 Oct 2014 | 2:28 am
    Have you ever wondered if there’s a difference between how men and women shop online? What can you do to persuade each sex to buy from your website? This infographic by Minewhat showcases 18 strategies you can use to persuade both men and women to buy from you.
  • Infographic: 2015 E-commerce Opportunities

    24 Oct 2014 | 5:08 am
  • Christmas 2014: Key Shopping Dates (US)

    23 Oct 2014 | 2:26 am
    9 weeks until christmas day! Yes christmas 2014 will be here before you know it! Have you predicted what your biggest shopping days will be online, offline and per platform? Well, if you haven’t, get a cup of warm cocoa and have a look at last years key shopping dates for the US… Liked this? Have a look at Keep It Usable’s 2015 e-commerce opportunities infographic
  • Future cancer detection using an iPhone

    18 Oct 2014 | 5:50 am
  • What your smartphone says about you

    7 Oct 2014 | 9:02 am
    Here are some fun insights into what your smartphone says about you. After reading this, I think my next phone will be an iPhone! Source And just when you think things couldn’t get worse… sorry fellow Android users, it seems the world thinks we’re alcoholic chavs! Source Note: Under-weight and over-weight refers to the statistics and potential bias based on respondent type, not body size. Disclaimer: This post is a bit of fun. I’m an Android user and definitely not a chav! :p
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    user experience design, ux and usability blog - keepitusable

  • Infographic: 2015 E-commerce Opportunities

    23 Oct 2014 | 2:53 am
    Source: Statistics from the e-commerce expo October 2014 day 1 and day 2.
  • More fascinating e-commerce insights for 2015! Expo day 2

    8 Oct 2014 | 11:46 pm
    Following our hugely popular write-up of the e-commerce expo day 1, here’s what happened on day 2. It’s even better, with fantastic insights on how to be successful in e-commerce in 2015, with advice from Paypal, Maplin and leading successful entrepreneurs! The future of payments now Rob Harper, Paypal Mobile payments are growing rapidly. More and more consumers are using their mobile to purchase. It means they’re buying on their terms and on their device. However, £1.5bn was lost to uk commerce in the last year! Why? Payment friction is one of the leading reasons why…
  • Fascinating insights: E-commerce expo day 1

    4 Oct 2014 | 5:46 am
    This week we attended the London e-commerce expo to discover the latest statistics, technology and importantly, what’s predicted to be big in 2015. Here’s our write-up of the sessions we attended on day 1 (day 2 to come soon). What’s very clear is that mobile will be massive in 2015! New technology enabling more advanced tracking of customers offline and online will also pave the way for advanced data, customer engagement and retargeting across channels (more of this in our next blog post: day 2). Driving Sales in a connected world Tracy Yaverbaun, Facebook Mobile was a…
  • The future of e-commerce: Generation Z

    1 Oct 2014 | 12:05 am
    The next up and coming wave of consumers are called generation Z. Born between the mid 1990s and 2010, these young people have been brought up with the internet and social networks. They are ‘Digital Natives’ and as a marketer or product owner you will need to approach this generation of consumer very differently. So, let’s learn more about them… Who are Generation Z? Right now they are aged between 4 and 19 years old. They currently make up more than a quarter of the US population and this is still growing. They spend nearly every waking hour online. 46% are…
  • Keep It Usable beat hundreds of entrants to the DADI awards

    21 Jul 2014 | 3:57 am
    We’re excited to announce that we’ve made it as a finalist in the DADI Awards Usability category for our redesign of Katy Thomson of The Drum told us: We received over 550 entries this year so getting through to this stage really is a huge achievement. Your work has impressed the panel! You should be very proud of you and your team’s hard work. For those of you who may be unfamiliar with KOOTH, it’s the UKs most successful online mental health platform for young people. provides online counselling to 10,000 young people with potentially…
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    All About CAD Conversion

  • The Advantages and Uses of BIM

    Diane Mitol
    20 Oct 2014 | 2:51 pm
    The Advantages and Uses of BIM BIM has many advantages over traditional CAD design methods and represents a completely different approach to building design and documentation.  Since CAD essentially automates the traditional “paper & pencil” process, CAD drawings are created as stand-alone documents, and design changes need to be followed up and implemented manually on each CAD drawing. BIM (Building Information Modeling) applications enable the buildings to be “built” in a virtual environment with all data stored in the central building model, enabling design…
  • Manual vs. Automated Raster to Vector Conversion

    17 Oct 2014 | 11:38 am
    Manual Vs Automated Raster to Vector Conversion Raster and Vectors are two formats of data structures used for storing engineering data. All major CAD software are developed primarily using these data structures. Based on the usage of the data the engineering drawings are stored either as raster images or vector data. Engineering drawings which are to be frequently updated or any changes to be made then it is stored in vector format. If no changes are required and the engineering data is just to be stored then the data is stored in raster format. A raster image is majorly used for viewing…
  • How to Preserve Old Books and Delicate Historic Materials

    Diane Mitol
    1 Oct 2014 | 12:22 pm
    How to Preserve Old Books and Delicate Historic Materials It is important to recognize just how fragile these types of paper-based records really are.  Many books and historical documents that were created after the 1830’s and before the 1980’s were created on paper made from wood pulp and alum-rosin sizing.  This combination resulted in acidic conditions that accelerated the deterioration of paper.  Paper made earlier than the 1830’s was made from rags, which has a better survival rate than the acidic wood pulp mixture used for the 150 years when many…
  • CAD CAM Design Using 3D Models

    Diane Mitol
    18 Sep 2014 | 3:04 pm
    CAD CAM Design Using 3D Models CAD CAM technology is used to design and to manufacture products.  While the CAD software is confined to design only, CAD CAM software not only designs, but also programs CNC manufacturing processes.   Today, the CAD design portion is often done using 3D models and assemblies.  3D models let designers try the design out virtually in order to ensure that it works before the CNC machine is programmed to create the initial prototype.  Being able to test designs in a virtual environment prior to building the first prototype saves both the…
  • Do You Need Raster to Vector Conversion?

    Diane Mitol
    10 Sep 2014 | 12:56 pm
    Do You Need Raster to Vector Conversion? Eight Questions to Ask Those of us who are in the business of CAD conversion regularly use terms like raster to vector conversion, or the shortened form, R2V.  But it was brought to my attention last week, that if you’re not in the CAD conversion business, you might not even know what raster to vector conversion is, or why you might need it.  So, we’ve compiled a list of eight questions that you can ask to determine if you need raster to vector conversion.  But, before we get to the eight questions, let’s define just…
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