Meaning as driver for design decisions.
“But it doesn’t have to be that way. Now the time has come for us—designers, working on digital products—to step up our game and act like real gatekeepers. Instead of unethical practices and cheap tricks to lure people into more and more engagement, we need to do the hard work of designing meaningful products where people can connect, collaborate in a meaningful way, and help each other build a better world. We have a huge responsibility here as designers. It’s up to us how we design these platforms and what social norms we set there. In this article, I will share a few good examples I’ve seen, and I will also share a few stories from my UX company, where we try hard to put more meaningful social features in both our client’s products and our own.”
David Pasztor /davidpasztor ~ Boxes and Arrows ★
How to switch from one mode to another.
“The best experiences result from designers matching the way the computer behaves with the way our users are thinking, feeling, and interacting. This is what user experience design is all about. And yet, because of pressures, competing priorities, and industry trends, interaction modes are often an afterthought.”
Andrew Grimes a.k.a. /apgrimes | @andrew_grimes ~ A List Apart ★
HCI through the microscope.
“Microinteractions convey system status, support error prevention, and communicate brand. They are initiated by a trigger, are single-purpose, and can make the experience engaging.”
Alita Joyce a.k.a. @alitamjoyce ~ Nielsen Norman Group ★
Moving from the physical to the digital domain.
“The rapid development of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies is propelling us toward a world where an ever-increasing amount of our experiences are mediated by digital interactivity. As this trend continues, the task of designing our built environment will be as much about designing the interactive experiences that happen in that space as it will be about form, program, materiality and so on. The fields of interaction design and architecture will become one and the same, and we’ll need to work across disciplines and cultivate new skill sets to design new buildings.”
James Patten ~ DesignIntelligence ★
Perceived behavior of the machine triggers human behavior.
“Keeping animation choreography cohesive from the outset of a project can be challenging, especially for small companies. Without a dedicated motion specialist on the team, it can be difficult to prioritize guidelines and patterns early in the design process. What’s more likely to happen is that animations will be added as the product develops.”
Alla Kholmatova a.k.a. /allakholmatova | @craftui ~ A List Apart ★
Architecture and interaction. And where is information?
“The fields of interaction design (IxD) and architecture are increasingly intertwined . Architecture is to a large extent produced through the use of digital tools, and digital technologies are increasingly integrated with our built environment. However, these integrations themselves certainly have transformative effects. For example, as the drawing of buildings is primarily done with CAD technologies, the practice of sketching and drawing is also changed. The same can be said about computer-enhanced buildings. Through the integration of digital technologies into our built environment, one physical space can be designed to allow for easy reconfigurations of that space so as to serve many different purposes and activities. As such, digital technologies challenge a core idea in architecture—that the physical environment is hard to reconfigure—and further, that since the physical space both allows for and restricts the social space, it is important that architecture consider the design of the physical environment in relation to the social activity it is intended to support.”
Mikael Wiberg a.k.a. /mikael-wiberg ~ ACM Interactions XXXIV.2 ★
Attention, the 21st century human currency.
“The article discusses the need to develop interaction designs that are usable at various levels of attention, providing a continuum to facilitate designer-researcher in applying this notion. This continuum and the design considerations we derive from case studies are relevant when designing interactive systems for everyday routines.”
Saskia Bakker and Karin Niemantsverdriet ~ International Journal of Design 10.2 ★
Brand and design, just one side of the coin. The other is human (including the digital version) and design.
“Your interaction-design decisions have measurable effects on your users’ emotions and how they perceive your brand.”
Kate Meyer ~ Nielsen Norman Group ★
First visual contours of the design, a sketch.
“(…) if we think of design as a sequence of iterative phases that progress towards final production, we are then able to identify an open or fuzzy phase of design. In this we contrast a divergent conceptual design ideation with a more convergent, specific and detailed design phase. We do this as much to contrast the different aims of design at these different phases of the process, as to highlight the kinds of design work involved or tools used at any given stage.”
James Self ~ Core77 ★
Great to have found this newsflash after almost 20 years.
“The notion of making seems to be gaining some traction lately. When I talk to people outside academia about interaction design and new media, making often comes up, with references to physical computing, 3D printing, and Maker Faires, and overtones of grassroots activism and yet another this-changes-everything movement. I note a corresponding increase in the interaction design research discourse—but here, the word is used slightly more broadly to include construction, programming, and other craft-like activities forming part of the core of traditional design practice. That is also the sense in which I will be using the word here.”
Jonas Löwgren a.k.a. /jonaslowgren ~ ACM Interactions Magazine ★
Where’s The Gang of Four?
“That’s what Object Oriented UX is all about—thinking in terms of objects before actions. In my previous article, we learned how to define objects and design a framework based on those objects. This time, we’re exploring how to smoothly transition from big-picture OOUX to interaction design by using a very simple tool: the CTA (‘Call-To-Action’) Inventory.”
Sophia Voychehovski a.k.a. /sophiav | @sophiavux ~ A List Apart ★
Or how to integrate computation into interaction design.
“In this paper, we show the power of working explicitly with temporal form in designing computational things. We give a nuanced account of what temporal form is in interaction design, and we look at related work synthesizing what we already know of the temporal concerns in interaction design and HCI. In the second part we present a design experiment through which we explore the experiential qualities of a set of 11 simple temporal forms by letting a series of expert designers reflect upon them. We borrow a framework from Boorstin’s film theory in which he distinguishes between the voyeuristic, the vicarious, and the visceral experience. We show how to use rhythms, complexity, gentle or forceful behavior, etc., to create experiences of ‘being alive’, being entertained, or being something that we empathize with. We end the paper by arguing how the temporal form in computational things enables richer experiences than static objects do.”
Anna Vallgårda, Morten Winther, Nina Mørch, and Edit E. Vizer ~ International Journal of Design Vol. 9(3) Dec. 2015 ★
Moment-of-truth, the tiny versions.
“Mobile devices have changed our lives in many more ways than we can realize. They are just part of us now, and we have lost sight of how we behaved before. As user experience designers, we also have to play the part of anthropologists: well, a little. We need to understand our target users’ culture. In these fast-paced times, it can be hard to get time to stop, stand back, and look at what’s going on in the big picture. However, that’s the point: given that smartphones alone have changed life so much, it might take some effort to stop peering into their screens and see what’s happened to us as a species!”
Muriel Garreta Domingo a.k.a. /murielgd ~ Interaction Design Foundation ★
It seems hard to design for interaction when technology is evolving very rapidly. Unless you approach the problem in a more abstract fashion.
“Interaction design is a label for a field of research and for a practice. When we design interactive tools and gadgets we do interaction design. But what is it that we’re designing? And is this practice changing? Let me reflect on this a little bit.”
Mikael Wiberg a.k.a. /mikael-wiberg ~ ACM Interactions ★
Allways thought wayfinding had more in common with navigation and information architecture. Features (a.k.a. code) and data (a.k.a. content) perspectives differ.
“Wayfinding is the process of planning and making journeys through spaces; wayfinding design companies develop systems to help make this planning and journey-making easier. These systems come in all shapes and sizes, and can cover area naming, signage design, cartography, defining route networks and installing new landmarks to give an area more character.”
(Matt Cooper-Wright ak.a. @matt_speaks ~ Medium) ★
As a matter of exception, a tool item in an interesting context.
“There is an old adage that says ‘Use the right tool for the job’. However, with technology and User Experience Design, knowing which tools to use can be a bit nuanced. Often there are many tools for the job, all of which have their strengths and weakness. I’ve been thinking about a recently popular tool, Sketch, and where it fits into our practice of Enterprise UX Design.”
(Jaron Frasier a.k.a. @frason ~ Designmap) courtesy of @BaardAard ★
From words to stories, even in interactions.
“The words you choose, and how you put them together, will greatly influence your product’s overall message – and we’ll explain how using some words of our own. Below we’ll show you why words are the base of interaction design and how to know the context of the copy.”
(Jerry Cao a.k.a. @jerrycao_uxpin ~ Sitepoint) ★
Beside design thinking, we now have architectural thinking as well.
“Architecture is the classic, established approach to the design of our built environment. For hundreds of years, architects have focused on the design of our physical surroundings to define the frames for our lives. In doing so, architecture has established itself as the tradition of working with the material and artificial aspects of our physical surroundings to support the social and cultural aspects of our lives. With this as its primary focus, architecture as a discipline and a practice shares several characteristics with interaction design. Architecture is people-centered yet design-oriented; it deals with the intersection of human factors and artificial matters—that is, the material, designed aspects of our everyday lives.”
(Mikael Wiberg ~ ACM Interaction Magazine March/April 2015) ★
Nifty examples of digital behavior and user interaction.
“These two little words are being used a lot in the design sphere these days. But what truly is interaction design? And what makes you an interaction designer? Here, we’ll answer both of those questions and offer a showcase of some great interaction design work. (…) Users expect interactive experiences on modern websites. There is no way around it. In order to keep current and keep users coming back, having such interaction is necessary. Having someone on your team who is responsible for managing, creating and monitoring these interactions is equally important. You will need an interaction designer.”
(Carrie Cousins a.k.a. @carriecousins ~ Designmodo) ★
Re-usable components, elements and patterns, the Holy Grail on UX Design.
“Imagine a website with a beautiful, enticing, full-screen image, where a transparent button leads to pages of well constructed, adaptive content. The navigation functions perfectly across devices, switching from a horizontal to a mobile menu at just the right times. Unfortunately a large portion of the potential audience lives in Africa, and won’t have the bandwidth to use it. Does that mean our best practices failed us? No, it means that an experience is made up of more than the sum of its parts.”
(Brendon Cornwell a.k.a. @bcornwell ~ The UX Booth)