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Interviews

50 years ago today the word ‘hypertext’ was introduced

Half a century is not that long for paradigm shifts in human history.

“On August 24, 1965 Ted Nelson used the word ‘hypertext’ (which he coined) in a paper he presented at the Association for Computing Machinery. I was able to interview him earlier this month about the event and his early thoughts on the future of computing. It is hard to know where to start when writing an introduction for Ted Nelson because his interests and accomplishments have spanned so many areas across six decades.”

(Byron Reese ~ GigaOm) ~ courtesy of erikhartman

Service Design: Creating delightful cross-channel experiences

The holistic design view on digital and physical is taking hold.

“Service design seems to go by an increasing array of names: Customer Experience, Cross-Channel UX, or even just ‘design thinking’. In most cases, these terms describe a holistic approach to your users’ and customers’ needs, no matter where or when they’re interacting with your product or service. In traditionally siloed organizations, it can be no small task to ensure that you are providing the best possible service. Communication is at the heart of service design and Marc Stickdorn knows the core of it is getting everyone on the same page. He says that the importance of this lies in the fact that customer experiences sometimes aren’t tangible – a user or customer could be experiencing an internal event. It’s important to understand how different customers come in contact with the design.”

(Sean Carmichael ~ User Interface Engineering)

Information architecture’s role in UX design

Fortunately, no more discussions on information design versus information architecture. We’ve come from far away.

Jorge Arango discusses the state of IA and the importance of designers’ understanding of context and perspective – “Information architecture has always been an important part of user experience design, though not always acknowledged as such. With the emergence of social, IoT, and mobile, we have watched IA taking on a more dominant role in product development.”

(Mary Treseler a.k.a. @marytreseler ~ O’Reilly Radar)

Designers can do anything

Articulating the new role and opportunity of designers in the digital and physical world of now and beyond.

Jon Kolko: “The switch to an empathy focus is actually really easy. You need to watch behavior, so that means actually watching people do things. We talk about watching people work, play, and live because sometimes the things they do are actually not that utility driven.”

(Nick Lombardi a.k.a. @NickLombardi482 ~ O’Reilly Radar)

Deciphering data through design

That’s why the byline of this stream is ‘Understanding by Design’.

“Understanding problems are common when trying to visualize data. Designing a layout to effectively communicate complex or even simple data can be a challenge. If the visualization isn’t immediately apparent to a user, it requires a level of understanding to get the most out of their experience. (…) In this podcast with Jared Spool, Stephen outlines what he calls the 7 Problems of Understanding. These range from problems of comprehension to problems of discovery and more. Each of these problems is usually brought about by a design or display decision. Looking further at these issues, simple changes can greatly increase the experience for users.”

(Stephen Anderson a.k.a. @stephenanderson ~ User Interface Engineering)

Service design thinking

Next-up, interaction design thinking, visual design thinking and information design thinking. Design thinking in all of its incarnations.

“In the realm of user experience, disciplines and titles can take on different meanings. Determining buzzword jargon from actual, useful distinctions and processes is sometimes a bit tricky. The term Service Design has been with us for a while now. Some see it as just plain, good UX.”

(Marc Stickdorn a.k.a. @MrStickdorn ~ User Interface Engineering)

Designing mobile usability

Mobile usability, the same as paper usability or usability of applications. What’s all the difference? The principles are the same, the instantiations not.

“In this interview Jakob Nielsen, explains the rules of mobile usability. He outlines how to create seamless experiences and why designers are plagued with featuritis. He then goes onto explain the reciprocity principle and the importance of user-centred design.”

(Dorm Room Tycoon)

An extended interview with John Maeda, Design Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers

Always a treat to read John Maeda speak about design, Design and De$ign. Even though it’s briefly in this interview.

“Technology has matured. We don’t buy things because they have better technology; we buy them because they’re better designed. People in technology generally don’t understand what design is. I think there’s an opportunity and responsibility for designers to play a larger role in economic development and leadership. I call it moving from lowercase design to capital D Design to dollar sign De$ign. It’s going to be important for design to take a larger role in the technology economy.”

(Tina Essmaker a.k.a. @tinaessmaker ~ The Great Discontent)

Controlling the pace of UX with content strategy

Content and interaction, a perfect match for the UX of apps?

Interview with Margot Bloomstein ~ “In some scenarios, getting a user to convert or react to a call to action is the desired outcome. It means your design and experience work. But if users are coming to and then quickly leaving your site, what are they really experiencing? If they don’t take the time to explore and discover they may not have any loyalty to you or the experience. And if you’re dealing in complex decisions, you want your users to take the time they need to fully understand and commit to their choice.”

(Sean Carmichael ~ UIE Brain Sparks)

It’s not enough to change the light bulbs: A conversation with Brenda Laurel

Brenda presents a holistic view of technology, humans and the planet Earth.

“I see us developing technologies and design practices that reduce cognitive distance for people who use them. I hope that we will continue to create alternatives to the trivial pursuits currently favored by the marketplace. (…) Technology is an extrusion of the human spirit.”

(Julia Moisand Egea ~ Adaptive Path)

A conversation with Dan Klyn: Richard Saul Wurman & IA for UXers

Standing on the shoulders of giants gives a perfect view of the future.

“Initially I went back to 1976. That’s a fairly well-known time when Wurman introduced the idea of the architecture of information at this conference that he was the chairman of in Philadelphia but then going further back from there the artifacts become increasingly more difficult to get your hands on and yet the payload for how it could influence how we do our work today gets richer and richer.”

(Patrick Quattlebaum a.k.a. @ptquattlebaum ~ Adaptive Path)

Interview with content strategy author Ann Rockley

Getting your hands dirty with markup for real.

“Content strategists should realize that XML isn’t scary and it is really powerful for doing cool things with your content. In the ‘olden days’ when we first began creating Web-based content we used to have to use HTML codes to tag the content, now you create content in web forms or Word and rarely, if ever, have to think about the HTML codes. The same is true of XML, you don’t have to use codes to create content, there are lots of tools that ‘hide’ the XML tags. However, XML is much smarter than HTML. HTML tags describe the formatting structure of the content, XML defines the semantic structure of the content. For example, we can define that some content is a teaser and then have the system handle it differently when published to the Web, mobile, or even print.”

(Words+Pictures=Web)

“The music is not in the piano”

One of the giants on whom’s shoulders we stand.

Interview with computing pioneer Alan Kay ~ “One way to think of all of these organizations is to realize that if they require a charismatic leader who will shoot people in the knees when needed, then the corporate organization and process is a failure. It means no group can come up with a good decision and make it stick just because it is a good idea. All the companies I’ve worked for have this deep problem of devolving to something like the hunting and gathering cultures of 100,000 years ago. If businesses could find a way to invent “agriculture” we could put the world back together and all would prosper.”

(David Greelish ~ Techland)