All posts from
March 2012

The Architecture of a Social Business

The Company has a lot to learn and adapt to.

“(…) social media now seems to be touching everything within our organizations. Everything is going social. Whether it’s merely the addition of sharing buttons on content within an existing app, or if it’s a fundamental reworking of a customer support system to be powered by mass community participation instead of trouble tickets, social is infusing our work environment in ways too numerous to count. I now hear from our clients on a regular basis that they are starting to feel ‘surrounded by social.’ Many of them want to regain intellectual control of the changes taking place. They want to know what all the moving parts are and how they are connected. This done, they can then reason and plan about their future social landscape and better support the changes required.”

(Dion Hinchcliffe a.k.a. @dhinchcliffe ~ Dachis Group)

Nine Misconceptions About Statistics And Usability

Misconceptions are sometimes born out of plain ignorance.

“There are many reasons why usability professionals don’t use statistics and I’ve heard most of them. Many of the reasons are based on misconceptions about what you can and can’t do with statistics and the advantage they provide in reducing uncertainly and clarifying our recommendations. Here are nine of the more common misconceptions.”

(Jeff Sauro a.k.a. @MsrUsability ~ Measuring Usability)

UX SIG on Experience-driven design

Experience getting to the heart of innovation.

“This is a User Experience Special Interest Group event by SIGCHI Finland, supported by UXUS research project by TEKES/FIMECC. We have a special guest speaker from Delft University of Technology, Rick Schifferstein, talking about taking an experience as a starting point of designing products. Finnish speakers will accompany Dr. Schifferstein with speeches on experience design.”

(SIGCHI Finland)

Designing Engaging And Enjoyable Long-Form Reading Experiences

The issue of reading-from-a-screen is slowly fading. It’s about time.

“When you have fantastic and original content, ensuring the best possible reading experience is critical to keeping and building your audience. The following practices will help you design your content in a way that improves the experience for readers.”

(Martha Rotter a.k.a. @martharotter ~ Smashing Magazine)

Embedding User Experience Design in large organizations: Issues and recommendations

Large organizations is a different playing field for many UX peeps.

“The consequence of UX not being seen as an essential profitability lever is that it’s rarely adequately represented in the upper echelons of large organizations. It’s mostly seen as an auxiliary function down in the trenches as opposed to a core foundation of the business.”

(Rian van der Merwe a.k.a. @RianVDM)

The business value of content and content strategy

Content marketing in disguise.

“If you don’t yet grasp the value of content and content strategy to your business or organization, then it’s time to learn. If you do get it, then it’s time to step up and start teaching the executive team about the value of content. It’s time to illustrate that without good content to attract and engage potential customers, to educate them about their pains, to convince them to commit to change and to explore your solution, then the phones down the hall in the Sales organization will not be ringing much… or as much as they could be.”

(Jim Woolfrey a.k.a. @informative ~ strategeezy)

Cognition & The Intrinsic User Experience

Knowing some of the inner workings of people, design for transformational experiences is the goal.

“Over the past few years there’s been a lot of discussion around whether an experience can be designed. But it seems like everyone’s just getting hung up on semantics; an experience can be designed, but the user will always have the opportunity to experience it in a unique way. The reason every experience has the potential to be unique to the user is, in part, because cognition is unique to each user.”

(Jordan Julien a.k.a. @thejordanrules ~ UX Magazine)

Writing better link texts

Nano copy design improves holistic UX.

“Linking from your content is important – it builds credibility and improves usability, which combined equals more satisfied readers and hopefully return visits. Finding the right material to link to takes time and effort; effort that is wasted if no one bothers to ‘Click here’.”

(Mich Walkden ~ Mich-communication)

Mobile First: What Does It Mean?

It can mean many things. Depending of who asks.

“Many companies caught on to the mobile-first trend awhile back. Google surfaced their mobile-first strategy in 2010. As you’ve probably guessed from the name of this approach to site design, mobile first means designing an online experience for mobile before designing it for the desktop Web-or any other device. In the past, when users’ focus was on the desktop Web, mobile design was an afterthought. But today, more people are using their mobile devices for online shopping and social networking than ever before, and most companies are designing for mobile. Mobile first requires a new approach to planning, UX design, and development that puts handheld devices at the forefront of both strategy and implementation. The digital landscape has changed, and companies have realized that consumers are now accessing more content on their mobile devices than anywhere else.”

(Riley Graham a.k.a. @lrileygraham ~ UXmatters)

How to assess the maturity of your information architecture

We have models for maturity levels of usability, UX, CX and IA. Next up IxD, CS and what-have-you.

“These UX design practice verticals were the product of an IA exercise that charted the primary activities of eight unique forms of practice that play out in any comprehensive UX design project-large or small. Information architecture is one of those practices. It’s possible to arrange the following six tiers of the IA practice vertical-which together make up the primary areas of interest of information architecture-in a way that permits the quick evaluation of a site’s IA maturity.”

(Nathaniel Davis a.k.a. @iatheory ~ UXmatters)

Integrative Thinking, Feeling, and Being

A little more reflective thinking on design.

“(…) integrative thinking and design thinking hold a lot of promise. But will these methods lead us to the effective solutions our corporate and community sponsors require, and the authentic connections with customers we hope to create? And will we realize a future of design that includes the increased impact we seek? I believe the answer is ‘Yes, yes, and…’ Yes, these methods can be effective. Yes, they can drive impact. And they could drive more impact if we apply the behaviors that they require to ourselves and not just to external problems and research subjects. It’s not sufficient to think different, we must be different by demonstrating compassion, curiosity, openness, a comfort with ambiguity, and an unconditional positive regard for our experiences with one another.”

(Tonya Peck ~ Design Management Institute)

The Key To A Unified Brand: A Consistent UI

Marketing, brands and business discovering HCI rapidly. A little late, but still…

“The end user doesn’t care how your company is structured. Customers view brands as a unified entity, and they expect that brand’s value to be delivered across all channels with an equal degree of integrity. The good news is that the digital landscape is forcing all of us to re-think how we work. The bad news is that we’re trying to crawl out of a work style that was better designed for Ford’s assembly line than for digital ecosystem consistency.”

(Peyton Lindley ~ Fast Company Co.Design)

Why User Experience Is Different From Consumer Experience

CX or/versus/and UX? It’s in the air. Consumer of customer, that’s (still) the question.

“Forrester recently released a report on the rise of the Chief Customer Officer. The emergence of a C-level role with authority over customers’ interactions has caused much hand-wringing within the UX community. It’s like the job (we think) we’re made for has been stolen from us.”

(Greg Laugero a.k.a. @prodctstrategy ~ Johnny Holland Magazine) ~ courtesy of schilletje

How To Manufacture Desire

After objects of desire, we get services of desire?

“I created the desire engine in order to help others understand what is at the heart of habit-forming technology. It highlights common patterns I observed in my career in the video gaming and online advertising industries. While the desire engine is generic enough for a broad explanation of habit formation, I’ll focus on applications in consumer Internet for this post.”

(Nir Eyal ~ TechCrunch)

Yes there is

‘There is such a thing as…’ versus ‘There is no such thing as…’

“(…) I mostly walk away with the idea that the author just doesn’t understand content strategy. It is the lack of content strategy that helps promote the silo-fication of content creation, in which the silo with the strongest voice prevails, however disconnected from the customer’s needs and culture that voice might be.”

(Jim Woolfrey a.k.a. @informative ~ strategeezy)

What Does Digital Analytics Have in Common with Content Strategy, InfoArch and UX?

Another take on the same event.

“Not many would dispute that organizations need a Web strategy to be successful. When it comes to execution, operational governance is considered the key to getting the organization to act on the strategy. Governance takes the strategy and makes it real through alignment of roles, responsibilities, management policies and budget decisions.”

(Web Analytics Management)