My quest for a formula to calculate User Experience started with a little experiment to see if I could calculate cognitive loading time of a design. When talking about loading speed of digital products the focus always seem to be the digital loading time, but we sometimes forget that trying to understand an interface also requires time – cognitive loading time. The more I thought and researched this problem, the more I discovered that loading time – digital and cognitive – might just be a small part of a bigger and more important question: Is it possible to quantify User Experience? (gibbon.co)
27. März 2015
THE RISE OF ANDROID: How a flailing startup became the world's biggest computing platform (Lisa Eadicicco)
In 2004, Andy Rubin made an urgent call to his friend, Steve Perlman. Rubin’s startup, Android, was in trouble, he explained. Rubin didn’t like asking for money again, but the situation was dire. Android, which was creating mobile software for phones, was out of cash, and other investors weren’t biting. Perlman agreed to wire some funds as soon as possible. (businessinsider.com)
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26. März 2015
It’s almost incomprehensible in 2015 to build a website that isn’t responsive. The technique has developed to the point that most designers no longer say, ‘responsive web design,’ we say, ‘web design,’ and mean exactly the same thing. Naturally, opinions differ on how to implement responsive techniques; many sites that claim to be responsive aren’t; most sites that intend to be responsive are only superficially so; there are even a few fixed-width devotees clinging on in the face of all reason. But broadly speaking a responsive approach is the default option for all websites. (webdesignerdepot.com)
While millennia of art, from Greek vases to Italian chapels, have shaped our understanding of what beauty is, the comparatively recent technology behind eye tracking is adding a new dynamic to how we visually perceive the world. More to the point, this exciting new science is helping us better understand — and better design — websites that are both effective and aesthetic. (webdesignerdepot.com)
22. März 2015
We love working with journalists. They love to argue. They crave evidence. And they know how to ship. Every day they ship. You wanna learn how to ship? Work at a newspaper for a year. The great American philosopher Lorne Michaels once said “We don’t go on because we’re ready. We go on because it’s 11:30.” We know he was talking about a TV show, but the same applies to newspapers. The presses start rolling at midnight. It’s not on the front page because it was the most important thing that happened today. It’s on the front page because it was ready by midnight. (medium.com)
19. März 2015
What do information architecture and cognitive psychology have in common? There’s actually a fair deal of common ground between these two disciplines. Firstly, both of them are concerned with mental processes and how to to support those processes. Many working in the field of information architecture tend to have backgrounds in cognitive psychology or some closely related field. Having a background in cognitive psychology certainly supports the information architecture practice, and it is that correlation and support that will be looked into. (easilyeasy.com)
18. März 2015
Collecting data about design is easy in the digital world. We no longer have to conduct in-person experiments to track pedestrians’ behavior in an airport terminal or the movement of eyeballs across a page. New digital technologies allow us to easily measure almost anything, and apps, social media platforms, websites, and email programs come with built-in tools to track data. (boxesandarrows.com)
I spent the better part of 2014 working on two redesigns: one for a major pizza chain, the other for a major bike retailer. The five of us working on the redesigns were excited beyond words—two large-scale sites about two things we loved: pizza and bikes! We all wanted to be heavily involved in every phase of these projects to ensure their success. Along the way, we learned important lessons about how to fine-tune that involvement to arrive at a better outcome. (alistapart.com)
How does the current piece of content you’re creating fit into your content strategy? New content you produce needs to have a goal before you even start writing. Goals for your content benefit both you, the digital content creator, and your audience. Allow me to elaborate with an example from one of my favorite stories, Harry Potter. (copyblogger.com)
15. März 2015
StatusPage.io has been a remote company for the majority of its existence. We started with just Scott in Colorado and myself in North Carolina. About six months after we started, Danny came onboard while living in New Jersey. (statuspage.io)
12. März 2015
One of the great benefits of digital design is that it can be tested and measured. Yet so many aren’t doing that. Partly we can blame the workflow, where the client buys the design from the designer and focuses on aesthetics, not the results. But what if that could be included into our deliverables? What if we provided the designs and helped improve them? I admit it's scary, since the new design might perform worse that the previous one. Then again, what if we improved the design based on the data we gathered and ended up doubling or tripling the conversions? The gains seem to be way bigger than the scars to your ego. (froont.com)
If I lived and worked in San Fransisco, the current “death of the agency” debate may have slightly more poignancy than it does in the UK. San Francisco and the wider Silicon Valley is undoubtedly living through a huge tech bubble, and has been for some time. The slew of new tech businesses quickly hoovered up the local talent, before starting to ship them in from around the country and the rest of the world. This includes dozens of Brits I know who have left these shores for a better life in California. (andybudd.com)
Lean Startup is a methodology designed to get companies to adopt a Build, Measure, Learn product development cycle. This emphasizes that teams quickly build an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) of a new product, measure how it performs, and learn from the experiment. The goal is to quickly go through this cycle to maximize learning and reduce costs in a short amount of time. The end result, ideally, is a more effective and agile company. (kissmetrics.com)
8. März 2015
A few years ago, Matt Hall, the 39-year-old co-creator of the enormously successful Crossy Road, was a struggling, unprofitable video games developer living on an Australian sheep farm owned by his parents, chasing a dream of success that had come true for some friends but eluded him. (polygon.com)
It has been a pleasure to see our associate Sebastian Deterding’s thinking evolve through his presentations over the years. It has been a treat to read every new deck and to follow his reasoning in detail. You can also trace a very distinct line about games, user experience, psychology and ethics that has become more pronounced over time. Recently Sebastian published “Magic Wonder Pixie Dust”, a presentation which serves as our main reference when designing for motivation. This one comes in at 204 slides and it touches on everything you need to know to do this. I’ll go through it taking the engagement loop slide as a guide (below and 101 in the presentation) and talk about how we apply it as a design method in our day-to-day consulting work. (whatsthehubbub.nl)
Y Combinator's Kevin Hale teaches the 5 laws every software designer should know about interface design. He'll walk you through the experiments used to discover them and visualize the math in ways that makes it easy to see how to apply them in your day to day design work. (platzi.com)
7. März 2015
6. März 2015
Why the industry must drop its obsession with the 9 to 5 office job to retain talented women (Lisa Unwin)
Ahead of this year's International Women's Day, Lisa Unwin, founder of She's Back, asks why marketing departments and creative businesses are failing to make their working practices family friendly. Look around any marketing department and you will see a plethora of very capable young women. Move to the executive level and it's a different story: the vast majority of agency executives, senior creative directors and marketing directors are men. (brandrepublic)
When discussing a pattern-based design workflow, one knee-jerk reaction I hear from visual designers is that a design system will stifle creativity, leaving everything looking homogeneous and bland. I think there is some validity to this concern, and this sentiment can’t simply be chalked up to failed-artist designers who always want to ignore constraints and paint outside the lines. (bradfrost.com)
5. März 2015
What is email marketing? Is it simply sending emails (either batched or triggered), or does email marketing involve something much more than that? A few years ago, I coined the term “Holistic Email Marketing,” which I feel describes a more comprehensive approach for email marketers to take. I came up with this term in response to the typical situation in which an email marketer is focused on a company’s email marketing program that consists of only designing, writing, optimizing, and sending emails. (kissmetrics.com)
How often should you post to your social media accounts? For many marketers, this question is tough. Here’s why: Social media is a very flexible and fluid part of your marketing strategy. It’s not easy to draw the line between how much you could be posting and how much you should be posting. (hubspot.com)
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4. März 2015
The Jewish Torah teaches that the Creator created our world through ten utterances–for example, “let there be light.” The Jewish mystical tradition explains that these utterances correspond with ten stages in the process of creation. Every creative process in the world ultimately follows this progression, because it is really a part of the continual unfolding of the world itself, in which we are co-creators. (boxesandarrows.com)
A surprising thing happened during a recent brainstorming session I led for a retail client. We were supposed to be coming up with ideas for improving the company’s customer experiences, but the head of operations could not think of a single new customer service idea to explore. And the development leader failed to identify any new ideas for store layout or building features. And the merchandising vice president had difficulty understanding why “product” was one of the categories we were discussing. (hbr.org)
The greatest customer focused companies have come a long way since the time of classic LEAN approach to create customer value – luckily for us customers. “The original core idea behind LEAN is to maximize customer value while minimizing waste. Simply put, LEAN means creating more value for customers with fewer resources. A LEAN organization understands customer value and focuses its key processes to continuously increase it. The ultimate goal is to provide perfect value to the customer through a perfect value creation process that has zero waste” – quote LEAN Enterprise Institute. (linkedin.com)
3. März 2015
User experience professionals often complain that design teams fail to take action on the findings from user research. But researchers need to shoulder some of the blame: research reports are often too wordy, arrive too late and fail to engage teams with the data. Dressed-down personas, customer journey maps, photo-ethnographies, affinity diagramming, screenshot forensics and hallway evangelism provide 6 alternatives. (userfocus.co.uk)
I’m a huge advocate of making informed decisions. This belief permeates both my personal and professional life, helping to arm myself with the knowledge to choose the best course of action in situations where my knowledge is limited. On a personal level, this could be as simple as cross-referencing a movie recommendation from Netflix with the average score it holds on IMDB. Anything less than a 7/10 and I keep looking. (despreneur.com)
1. März 2015
The Apple Watch—set to launch in early 2015—is already having a dramatic impact on the watch industry, where executives are now rushing to figure out their smart watch strategy. Credit Suisse published a lengthy, in-depth report on the Swiss watch industry (pdf) in October 2013—well before Apple’s project was unveiled, but early enough that smart watches and fitness bands were coming into the picture. While some of the facts and figures aren’t the most recent, they’re useful as background about an age-old industry that is about to experience an entirely new form of competition. (qz.com)