And beyond technology as well. All through design.
"Over the last few years, the popularity of UX has grown by leaps and bounds. Companies have come to realize the importance of offering engaging experiences to their users, lest they risk losing them to competitors that have invested time and money into improving their product and service experiences. An interesting side effect of this enhanced focus on UX is that it has helped make users more sophisticated. This, however, can be a double-edged sword; as users become more sophisticated their expectations also increase, and UX professionals must find new ways to meet these elevated expectations. One way to achieve this is to extend the experience beyond the device."
Still wondering what the usability engineer actually does. Nielsen term, usability engineering.
"Usability Engineers may be great designers or maybe crap designers but as long as they include objective design rationale for their proposed solutions they will always be helpful."
Channel, platform, or touchpoint? I'm getting all confused with the new cross-lingo.
"Mobile is not a channel because I don't believe that consumers are making a distinction between their mobile and their fixed Internet experiences - from a consumer perspective, it's the same Internet accessed through different devices. (...) Let's stop talking about mobile as a separate channel and start designing digital experiences that incorporate mobile the way it obviously needs to be done."
Content (the stuff formerly known as information) has always been my reason to go to the WWW.
InfoDesign WebGem #6,400 - "At the forefront of this shift is the re-emergence of original, quality content and the surge in brands acting as publishers. Add to this changing landscape a redefining of journalism, shaped by social media, and the latest disruption in the broadcast industry, and media analysts see an industry that is both exciting and unsettling."
Reads like blowing the last post on UX design. Or is it IA?
"It's been seven years since I took that first step into IA, and, sadly, it seems that the practice of understanding and prioritizing information before designing the interface has been abandoned. And because of that, we are facing a huge problem in the world of UX, which is, simply put, that we are devolving."
The idea remains: UX is an organizational challenge, not a design one.
"Let's presume for the moment that interaction design can be perfected and delivered to your organization in a tidy, shiny bundle of brilliance. Have you now got a magic talisman that will protect you from competition and summon market share? Of course not. Design is just the beginning."
It looks scientific, but it's not.
"Three approaches to better design: each has its uses, but the costs, benefits, and risks differ dramatically."
Everything that pleases the eye.
"To scholars and practitioners in the field of HCI at the early 1990's, the idea that aesthetics matter in information technology sounded heretic. Two decades later, in the early 2010s, this thought has conquered a solid place in both academia and industry."
Philip Johnson-Laird's mental model being there for decades (since 1983). Finally entering CS.
"(...) when a mental model can be produced, it can be extremely useful for planning, maintaining and governing content over time."
The spacial metaphor of information environments (a.k.a. architecture) is strong. Even within mobile apps.
"This article is about the tiniest of details that goes into creating the main centerpiece of your digital product - the construction of the elements of your navigation. This is the most important aid you can possibly give to your users as they are constantly seeking a reason to walk out on you."
Disclosure: I work at Informaat (The Netherlands).
"Digital strategy touches every fiber of your operation. We firmly believe that it takes a systematic approach that's woven into your organizational fabric to deliver compelling customer experiences - an approach comprising a recurring cycle of ideation, design, development and evaluation (...) The Design Factory is a methodical, structured design capability that comprises people, processes and tools. It infuses your organization with the creativity, agility and efficiency to successfully execute your digital strategy - from conceiving innovative solutions through to using robust and scalable approaches for design and specification."
Disclosure: I work at Informaat (The Netherlands).
Industrialize Processes In Support Of A Digital Customer Experience Strategy - "To consistently meet or exceed customers' expectations, firms must take a systematic approach to digital customer experience management. In conducting in-depth interviews with 16 business professionals, Forrester found that several of these companies had adopted some best practices for digital design that delivered improvements in customer experience - leading to improved business results through increased revenues, improved loyalty, greater customer engagement, and reduced costs. However, no organization had a mature, systematic approach to consistently differentiate through superior digital customer experience. For firms to turn their digital customer experience into a sustainable source of competitive advantage, they must define a digital customer experience strategy and introduce robust tools and repeatable methodologies to support it."
Old wisdom: What people say is (often) not what they think.
"(...) get your participants to think aloud, but encourage comments that illuminate the problem space - because that's what usability testing is all about."
Besides DTDT and "There is no such thing as...", we also have "(...) can't be designed" as a recurring theme.
"User experience has been getting a lot of attention these days, but many businesses are confused about the actual meaning of it. In my opinion, it can be defined as the summation of different considerations i.e. defining the information structure, enabling the users to manipulate the data/information, and communicate the different possibilities to the users."
Comments more interesting than post.
"I wrote a piece a while back that there was a "war" of sorts going on between (among?) information achitects (who frequently came out of the library science, writing, or HCI fields), usability experts, and "designers," and by that, I mean makers of pretty pictures and high concepts (frequently designers who came out of a classic design-for-print-ads field). Judging by the posts I've seen on this forum, the job listings (and requirements) in the general field, and, oddly enough, feedback I've gotten from users, "information architects" have lost the field and retired - IMHO to the detriment of the discipline. (And I'm talking here about websites and web apps, kiosks, smart phones, etc., not hand-held devices and products or things like menu structuring for DVD players or car audio systems.)"
Design thinking is thinking about conducting the business. For some...
"Design thinking seems to be all the rage in business and entrepreneurship circles, but the momentum has been building for over 13 years. (...) The beauty of design thinking is that it works best under conditions of uncertainty-when you really don't know where to start. It's a methodology that is very messy in practice but does allow for a systematic approach to creating new opportunities. In my opinion, every entrepreneur is a designer."
The more you chunk it, the better is gets. Up to a certain level of granularity.
"Adaptive content lets you automatically provide your content anytime, anywhere, and on any device. Adaptive content is limited only by your design decisions, the functionality of the device being used, and the intelligence of your content."
The other is the most significant subject in your professional live.
"When we interact with web and intranet teams, we find many struggling to move beyond conceptual-level discussions on information organization. Hours on end are spent on discussing the meaning of "metadata", "controlled vocabulary" and "taxonomy" without any strategic understanding of how everything fits together. Being so bogged down at this level they fail to look beyond to the main reason for their pursuit—organizing information for others (the end users) so that they can find the information easily."
Justice will be done to those with universal ideas and visions.
"Decades before the creation of the World Wide Web, Paul Otlet and Henri La Fontaine envisaged a paper archival system of the world's information. They built a giant international documentation centre called Mundaneum, with the goal of preserving peace by assembling knowledge and making it accessible to the entire world. For us at Google, this mission sounds familiar."
(Google | Official blog)
A professional identity is not something you get instantly. You have to work for it and grow.
"(...) we can make ourselves part of the solution. The first step in doing so is to take a minute, stop and think. We need to, at a minimum, take the time to understand human capabilities. That is really what user research is all about."
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."
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."
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."
And mostly, it's not the flow of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi.
"Smooth-flow task performance makes application use pleasurable. But disruptions are all too common due to crinkly design or creaking implementation."
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."
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."
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."
Getting more and more towards the direction of virtual, computational documents a.k.a. content.
"(...) to expand on the discussion around responsive design specifically, demonstrating why we need a foundation of content types, micro-structures, and business rules if we want to keep priority, relationships, and meaning intact."
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."
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)
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."
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."
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."
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."
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."
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."
'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."
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."