Why investment in Design is the only way to ‘Win’ in education

It used to be called educational technology or instructional design, but design for learning experiences might now be a better label.

“Design describes the quality of an experience as it relates to aesthetics, emotions, pleasure, usability, and cognition. We typically think of design as a forgivable attribute, and we overlook products or services that are hard to use, confusing, demanding, degrading, and downright ugly as long as that payoff is still delivered. The payoff of rapid air travel is so great that we’ll forgive uncomfortable (and potentially physically dangerous) seats, loud noise, an unpredictable cabin climate, long lines, poor service, and so-on. These are design attributes. We can design better experiential qualities for air travel, fixing the seats, the line, and the service, but why would a company bother with the expense if consumers are singly motivated by the payoff?”

(Jon Kolko a.k.a. @jkolko ~ UX Magazine)

UX for healthcare: What you need to know before you start

Patient, customer, user, employee, student, citizen. All human actors in specific contexts with their (digital) experiences.

“Healthcare is a new hot topic in software development, which means that user experience designers are getting more requests for designing and conducting research for medical applications. Working on something that will help patients manage a chronic disease, administer the correct dose of medication, or communicate more effectively with their healthcare provider can be very rewarding. However, there are many unique issues to be aware of before starting the design and development of a medical application or device.”

(Amy Willis ~ User Experience Magazine 14.3)

UX maturity model: From usable to delightful

I don’t think most organizations have two decades to reach the highest level. As Jakob once suggested.

“The output of a UXMM assessment is a numeric score between 0 and 100. Higher scores indicate greater UX quality of the product. A minimum required benchmark score is also generated based on the context of the application. The actual score is compared with the benchmark score to determine if the application passes or fails that assessment level. The benchmark score is calculated through a benchmarking exercise based on a predefined questionnaire to be filled for the application that is being assessed.”

(Prachi Sakhardande a.k.a. @sugarprachi and Rajiv Thanawala ~ User Experience Magazine 14.3)

The man who envisioned the internet before computers, without computers

Alex’ book really works as a catalyst for our giant Paul Otlet.

“But then there’s the story of Paul Otlet. Born long enough ago that he lived in an imperial Belgium, the problems Otlet, a visionary and entrepreneur, hacked away on are the same we deal with today: nationalism, war, and information overload. The solutions Otlet worked for also resonate today, perhaps nowhere more surprisingly than the means by which you’re reading this very article.”

(Ben Richmond a.k.a. a_ben_richmond ~ Motherboard)

The aggregate nature of service design

You can’t design your way out of the bits holistically.

“Service design is singularly centered on the human experience. We call it the end-to-end journey, but the service itself is something that is a collection of all the journeys that can be taken through it. The service that you design on top of is a big picture. Holistic is the word we use, but what does that even mean, and how do you look at something holistically and then approach it holistically?”

(Erik Flowers a.k.a. @Erik_UX ~ Hello Erik)

Search is not enough: Synergy between navigation and search

I would call it the difference between the algorithms and the synapses.

“When websites prioritize search over navigation, users must invest cognitive effort to create queries and to deal with the weak implementations of site search. (…) Site search is vital and can save the day for those users who have well defined goals and a good understanding of the information space in which they are searching. However, if you’re considering pushing search on your site at the expense of navigation, think again. Navigation serves important functions: it shows people what they can find on the site, and teaches them about the structure of the search space. Using the navigation categories is often faster and easier for users than generating a good search query. Plus, many times site search does not work well or requires users to have a good understanding of its limitations.”

(Raluca Budiu ~ Nielsen Norman Group)

Defining user experience strategy

Different ways to define UX strategy with canvas or blueprint. A new #DTDT is born. We had a ‘There is no such thing as…’ before.

“UX strategy isn’t the blueprint, canvas, or definition you use. UX strategy is about the conversations you have and the alignment you achieve. As you start hacking your own approach to UX strategy, it’s good to remember two key elements: change and context.”

(Austin Govella a.k.a. @austingovella ~ AGUX)

Service blueprints: Laying the foundation

From journey to blueprint to touchpoint.

“With this post, we examine one of the primary tools of service design: the service blueprint. Today’s products and services are delivered through systems of touchpoints that cross channels and blend both digital and human interactions. The service blueprint is a diagram that allows designers to look beyond the product and pixels to examine the systems that bring a customer’s experience to life.”

(Lauren Chapman Ruiz a.k.a. @lchapmanruiz ~ ACM Interactions)

Designing for services and long-term innovation

Services and design, a happy marriage.

“You may not believe in reincarnation, but Shelley Evenson has had three lives. She’s been an academic, consultant, and an interaction design guru. Prior to joining Fjord, she was a Research Manager in Design and User Experience at Facebook and a Principal User Experience Designer and Manager for Microsoft. She was also an Associate Professor in the School of Design at Carnegie Mellon University. Throughout these lives, she’s had two strong love affairs: one with education and the other with technology.”

(Shelley Evenson ~ Lean UX NYC)

How to create great UX documents

‘Document’ is so much better than ‘deliverable’ as a label. UX documents are information objects and need to be designed as such: comprehensive, attractive and understandable.

“Like all good usability professionals I’m sure that you’ve previously carried out usability testing on a design, or perhaps watched usability testing sessions taking place. But have you ever usability tested a document? Why not? In the same way that usability testing will give an indication of how usable and appropriate a design is, it can also do the same for a document.”

(Neil Turner a.k.a. @neilturnerux ~ UX for the masses)

Breaking up with the user in user experience strategy?

And all this because business has discovered experience as a significant and distinctive feature. Next, they’ll have to discover design.

“(…) many of the people attending CX conferences and subscribing to CX publications aren’t necessarily practitioners, but businesspeople whose organizations have, in some way, given them experience-related responsibilities and who must purchase consulting services to fulfill them. If we badge ourselves as strategists of any stripe in the field of experience, these are the people we need to be talking to.”

(Ronnie Battista ~ UXmatters)

Reuse is a good tactic but a poor strategy

Reuse was the holy grail of code, now of content.

“(…) reusing text where you would have been writing substantially the same text anyway is clearly the right thing to do. But taking all the various ways in which you might express an important idea and combining them into one expression is a bad idea. Your idea will have more impact and more reach if it is expressed in different ways and in different media for different audiences, different purposes, and different occasions.”

(Mark Baker a.k.a. @mbakeranalecta ~ Every Page Is Page One)

What is a card?

My C5 design law of cards: Cards contain content chunks and code.

“(…) when we talk about cards in digital products, it’s important to understand that there are actually two, interrelated concepts at work that some people conflate as one. I’ll use some grossly simplified language to label them as cards as presentation and cards as third-party content. (…) A card is a single unit of content or functionality, presented in a concise visual package. More advanced cards use that form to surface content or functionality from other apps, and allow users to interact with that content or functionality directly in the context of where a user encounters the card.”

(Khoi Vinh a.k.a. @khoi ~ Subtraction)