A design journey
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A design journey
A journey along the creative landscape with stops for UX consumption
Curated by Hans
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Unique Ways to Display Data on Your Site – And Why Beautiful Data is All the Rage | Usability Geek

Unique Ways to Display Data on Your Site – And Why Beautiful Data is All the Rage | Usability Geek | A design journey | Scoop.it
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The 4 Design Assumptions Costing You Money | Usability Geek

The 4 Design Assumptions Costing You Money | Usability Geek | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Assumptions are the designers worst enemies because they make us arrogant. Shouldn't a design know what controls that works for all users, shouldn't a designer know the meaning of symbols, shouldn't a designer know what possible user contexts exists? The answer is simple: NO! There are no quick answers to good design because users are diffrent to each other, technology is constantly changing and expectations are hard to predict. But the formula to happy users is simple, make research, prototype and test the design until all details fall into place.

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Five Principles of Writing for Users | UX Magazine

Five Principles of Writing for Users | UX Magazine | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Designing user interfaces is not only about structure, content and behavior - in the end it's all about meaning. How does the receiver interpret the information? Communicating by design in a multi device landscape is a challenge when both users and contexts are unknown.  Here is an article with a few simple principles of writing for successful user experiences.

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Psychology for UX and Human Experience


Via Terry Patterson
Hans's insight:

When people ask me what I do for a living I usually say something like: "I adapt technology to humans in order to set the stage for satisfying experiences... or in other words I design things that are easy and fun to use". Sounds simple, but humans are unpredictable, more unpredictable than computers, so  I must always make sure my designs emerge from existing needs and desires, and the only way to do this is by understanding the psychology behind the user experience.

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Six Mobile Myths | UX Magazine

Six Mobile Myths | UX Magazine | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Above all, designing for experiences is about understanding the situation of use, We must consider technology, economy, psychology and context among other aspects,. No doubt we are doing a great job defining usable design patterns for varying environments and multiple devices. But the mobile medium is still immature and best practices still need improvements. So lets straight out some question marks about how people actually prefer to use mobile devices and debunk some myths.

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Terry Patterson's curator insight, October 11, 2013 10:55 PM

Excellent article! I especially liked the mention about the intention of the user remains the same whether they use mobile or desktop. I do believe the only differences are context, preferences and expectations. 

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Eye-Catching Mobile App Interfaces with Sleek Gradient Effect

Eye-Catching Mobile App Interfaces with Sleek Gradient Effect | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

When I read this article about gradients in mobile apps I started to think about how much mobile user interface design have evolved. For a long time the web mainly consisted of hyperlinked pages which had to be rendered and displayed when user navigated in the user interface. Lately I've noticed an emerging trend, especially in mobile design. Instead of organizing content in traditional tree-structures there are a flood of new "modern" navigation patterns out there. We can find content off-canvas, pulled in and out from a hierarchy of transperent layers, hidden behind filters or vertically folded beneath list items. I think this kind of "information surface" feels intuitive and the content is always close, like a well organized office where everything can be found in the right box, drawer. shelf or folder. But a mobil UI has limited capacity just like an office, so it crucial from usability point of view to leave some space for the users to walk around.

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Intuitive UI patterns

Intuitive UI patterns | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

At the moment we have several options to interact with technology in tactile ways, where we slide, zoom and fade content in, out and around on the screen. The main advantage of such navigation patterns is that users will not be sent from one position to another and then look for bread crumbs or other clues in order to orient themselves, instead they will actually see and remember how they accessed the content. A subtle animation can definitely enhance the users ability to perceive important feedback. Hence, I think transitions are great UI effects in order to support intuitive experiences in a time when human-computer interaction is getting more physical.

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Data-Driven Design In The Real World | Smashing UX Design

Data-Driven Design In The Real World | Smashing UX Design | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Our online presence is monitored, analyzed and interpreted in order to gain deeper understanding about how we use technology. Many popular web services store data about their visitors and their behavior today, which has become a digital currency containing valuable insights that could lead to increased profits... at least in the right hands. As a UX:er the challenge is to transform data into successful actions, because if it doesn't lead to the right change it's worthless. Here is a useful article explaining the basics of data driven design.

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Seeing the Elephant: Defragmenting User Research

Seeing the Elephant: Defragmenting User Research | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Not long ago I watched the movie Now you see me, which was entertaining enough to keep me awake after a long day at work. One sentence got stuck after I turned off the screen: "The closer you look, the less you see". It applies very well to a creative process in my opinion, diving into details before understanding the big picture will often result in fragments of good design instead of complete coherent experiences. The larger a project is, the more important it is to put a little extra effort into the synthesis so ALL research data will be interpreted and analyzed before parceling the insights in order to communicate a comprehensive picture. In other words: don't miss the elephant in the room.

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Evil by Design? How Interaction Design Can Lead Us into Temptation

Evil by Design? How Interaction Design Can Lead Us into Temptation | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Good design is based on psychology and behavioral science in order to anticipate and set the stage for desired user experiences. As a result, good designers will also posses the power to make people march to their beat by implementing persuasive design principles. So I think UX:ers have a responsibility, I call it honest design, to design things that people truly want to use, not tempt people to use things they actually don't want.

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Pros and Cons of Flat Design

Pros and Cons of Flat Design | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Should I design flat or should I not, that's a difficult question I have to ask myself when I'm working on new interfaces. It's trendy with flat design but it lacks personality. It's easy to read flat design but it looks over sized on large screens. It's touchscreen friendly to use flat design but it's difficult to know where to touch. The pros and cons are many, here is an article trying to make it easier to comprehend so we can make the right decision.

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Five Steps to Storytelling with Data

Five Steps to Storytelling with Data | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via Mario K. Sakata, Michael Allenberg
Hans's insight:

Finally the math courses included in my engineering education are going to pay for the effort :) Many digital applications are depending on large flows of data that must be visualized in one way or another, and more data leads to more advanced algorithms in order to do it. No matter how much calculus I have studied, most of the raw data circulating the web will be impossible to interpret without being tranformed into a more user friendly format. Consequently designers must accept the challenge to reduce complexity and make the enormous amount of information cosumable for human beings, so why not tell it like stories, becuase that's something we are all familiar with.

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Michael Allenberg's curator insight, August 14, 2013 8:16 AM

Data interpretation is the skill to develop in the coming years... It is not simply how to read data (or Big Data) that matters, but effectively prioritizing and communicating abstractions into consumables that benefit and guide end-users.

Mike Donahue's curator insight, August 15, 2013 9:03 AM

Good content is content you comprehend.

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Typography in Mobile Design: Important Aspects and Examples

Typography in Mobile Design: Important Aspects and Examples | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

The ways we have been communicating by typography have adapted to the development of new media. We painted in sand, carved in stones, wrote in ink, typed on typewriters, printed book, wrote digital texts, published them on Internet, and now we must make our words embrace the multi screen landscape. When the mobile revolution started both formats and rendering of web pages was a complete UX disaster. Seriously, who could read the cluttered, 5 column Internet version of the favorite news magazine on a 2" screen. Luckily the medium matured since then and we have plenty of opportunities to present web pages beautifully on mobile devices, large HD displays, better Internet access, responsive web technology and increased knowledge. Consequently the web is now full of big typography with high contrast, a lot of space and easy to read fonts in crystal clear resolutions.

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Three Uses for Analytics in User-Experience Practice

Three Uses for Analytics in User-Experience Practice | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

In order to make the most of analytics data, UX design must integrate this data where it can add value. Understanding how users are actually using a website is the first step on the road to improvement.

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How to design for maximum traction

How to design for maximum traction | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

The average visitor spends only a few seconds on the landing page before taking the decision to stay or not. Consequently it's important to make a good impression and attract users at first glance. But getting peoples' attention is not enough in order to reach a conversion, thereafter the challenge is to 1 present a value proposition, 2 use clear call-to-actions, 3 remove all traction and 4 gain trust.

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Clicking Fast and Slow | UI Engagement

Clicking Fast and Slow | UI Engagement | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

According to studies in psychology humans have two cognitive systems, a more intuitive one that is good at recognizing patterns and a slower one that is more engaging and requires more mental effort. Usually people are trying to find enough clues to make decisions as fast as possible with the least mental effort. By dealing with digital interfaces users continuously evolves patterns in order to interact more efficiently. We look for likes to validate YouTube clips, we look at numbers of reviews before buying products online and we filter all fake download buttons when we try to download files in order to recognize the real one. This interesting article describes how fast and slow thinking can be considered in web design in order to help user navigate through the seemingly endless amount of noise out there.

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Smart Transitions In User Experience Design

Smart Transitions In User Experience Design | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via Mario K. Sakata
Hans's insight:

The web is a place overcrowded by content and different patterns to navigate. At the same time we use smaller screens more often. Consequently, I think it's essential to make the users feel in control.  But how? Transitions are important components of good interaction design since every change of state might have an impact on the user experience.. Implementing transitions wisely will not only give users valuable feedback about the consequences of their actions, it will also stimulate the procedual memory and improve the learnability. Here is a useful article with examples of best practice.

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Jean-Luc Le Moal's curator insight, November 6, 2013 8:45 AM

De l'importance des bibliothèques Javascript dans les nouveaux projets UX

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Beyond Usable | Mapping Emotion to Experience

Hans's insight:

Genuine design experiences are based on something more than functionality, something more than reliability and something more than usability. People actually expect to feel something when they interact with technology, they want satisfaction. So how do we know what design decisions that will trigger desired emotions?

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Business Value Coach's curator insight, October 17, 2013 9:58 AM

In klantbeleving draait alles om emoties!

Armony Hren's curator insight, October 30, 2013 9:59 AM

Yet another post reinforcing the importance of Emotional Design in the holistic Experience!

RDV Weekly's curator insight, February 7, 2014 4:26 PM

One accepted principle of UX is how emotion is quintessentially mapped to most if not all we do.

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The Tangible Web: Thoughts on Designing for Touchscreens

The Tangible Web: Thoughts on Designing for Touchscreens | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via gonzodesign
Hans's insight:

Touchscreen technology and gesture based user interfaces definitely changed the way we interact with digital content. Today we can experience the web as a partly tangible medium.with less abstraction and more intuition. And I like it! Humans have developed motor skills to deal with the physical world, we move, we swipe and we tap to modify our environment. So of course we should adapt UI designs to the mental models mother nature implemented in us and deliver truly intuitive experiences as a result.

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gonzodesign's curator insight, September 23, 2013 4:12 PM

Touchscreens and the mobile web just made designers’ lives a lot more complicated, BUT it’ll be our creativity and ingenuity that sets the standards of the next generation of touchscreen and gesture-driven user interfaces.

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Making Usability Findings Actionable

Making Usability Findings Actionable | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

As a UX:er I try to motivate important design decisions based on user opinions. I do user research, design prototypes and perform test sessions to unveil critical insights. Initially the problem is to plan the design process so it allows the required level of user involvment, then the real challenge is to parcel and communicate all the valuable insights and truly impact the final implementation.

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Terry Patterson's curator insight, September 18, 2013 9:20 PM

If you follow the Nielsen Norman Group you know that you will find what you're looking for in terms of best practices in the field. This article describes everything you need to know about usability reports right in the first paragraph. Unfortunately in practice I have seen small teams ignore the reporting step of even informal usability findings. In a way, I am convinced that it depends largely on the team's dynamic and design culture whether or not this step is formal enough to allow a usability practitioner to do his job well. How formal is your team's usability testing process?

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10 design concepts every developer should know

10 design concepts every developer should know | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via Brian Yanish - MarketingHits.com
Hans's insight:

This article delivers some very useful points to consider during every design project. I agree with the author, design is more than what you see at first glance, design satisfies user needs, design supports functional specifications, design builds a strucure that is easy to navigate, design makes information flow smoothly and design evokes emotions. It's all about maintaining the perspective and understanding why the problems need to be solved from the beginning - because someone actually needs it. So don't forget who someone is and what someone wants.

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UI and Capability | UX Design

UI and Capability | UX Design | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via Terry Patterson
Hans's insight:

A successful user interface should always support the capabilities first. Start with the users in mind, identify their needs, define the requirements and design a UI that makes it as easy as possible for the user to achieve their goals. So before building the bridge, figure out where it should take you and then make sure to give people a helping hand when they want to cross it.

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Terry Patterson's curator insight, September 3, 2013 9:58 AM

This is another fantastic example of design thinking with the user in mind. This author separates clearly the function of the design and the graphic interface, although they are both connected at a deep level, in early interations it may be unnecessary to spend a lot of time "styling".  The capabilities focus should be the main concern and once that is tested by real users, everything else in the design follows. Versioning is important and so is listening and observing the user itneraction with the product early and often to guide the design. 

Hans's comment, September 3, 2013 1:38 PM
Great article! I like the idea of putting capabilities first, and of course capabilities should be based on user needs, before adding the style.
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Get out of the Lab and into the Real World | UX Magazine

Get out of the Lab and into the Real World | UX Magazine | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Designing for people should always involve research with real users in realistic situations. It's comfortable to slide down in the office chair, analyze remotely produced user data, simulate context of use and apply best practice, but it will probably not unveil a complete image of the user needs. A lab can never simulate how people actually live their lives. Instead I think observing people in their common environments is the first step to design usable products, because if we don't understand the problem how can we solve it? Ultimately, as a user experience designer, my problems are the problems the users have.

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Terry Patterson's comment, August 29, 2013 7:20 PM
Yes, yes and yes! Although the remote sessions are sometimes the options that you have for any number of reasons, nothing beats observing the real interactions in context.
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Getting More Out of Your UX Team | EffectiveUI

Getting More Out of Your UX Team | EffectiveUI | A design journey | Scoop.it

Via Terry Patterson
Hans's insight:

Defining UX is a challenge even for a UX designer because there are no golden rules regarding responsibilities, deliverables or alignments with other departments. UXers are like chameleons trying to blend in with marketers as well as developers while speaking all languages in a company. UX is the last piece of the puzzle that completes the overall picture, and therefore my belief is that adaptation is more essential than standards. A successful UX team will become a complete animal with well defined and measurable outcomes that are aligned with the other departments if it just has enough time and space to evolve.

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Terry Patterson's curator insight, August 28, 2013 1:47 PM

I've been hearing this a lot from many organizations: "Our UX efforts need more alignment" - and although I agree with this statement, I don't necessarily agree with having exclusive alignment to any specific functional area in an organization, such as Marketing or Communications and External Relations. The UX function and goal should be aligned with the core of the organization itself and its strategic goals. UX leaders in organizations should have firm ties with top executive leaders in order to guide the direction of any product that is produced to serve the needs of the organization's customers. 

Terry Patterson's comment, September 3, 2013 10:24 AM
I really like some of those key words that you used: adaptation, definition, measurement. What is very true about what you say is the organizational alignment of UX teams does depend on the type of organization and also the type of product. A UX team could be central of a company focused on delivering digital products, and the same type of team could be secondary [and work with marketing or be part of marketing] when the company focuses on other type of service or physical product.
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Making the Most of Ethnographic Research | UX Magazine

Making the Most of Ethnographic Research | UX Magazine | A design journey | Scoop.it
Hans's insight:

Ethnographic research is an essential phase in the creative process since this is the moment when user needs and wants will set the foundation for crucial design decisions. On the other hand, theory is not always working in practice, so in my opinion the best way to make the most out of ethnography is to make broad studies with many participants and loose requirements as outcome. Because, hopefully this will lead designers in the right direction, but leave space for evolutionary development in an iterative testing phase where actual users have the opportunity to contribute with important input to the decision makers.

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