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Technology

At the crossroads of chaos and calamity

See how IBM is revitalizing Design in its organization.

“In a 1966 memo to all IBM employees, then-Chairman and CEO Thomas J. Watson, Jr. declared, Good design is good business. At that point in history, IBM used design to demystify technology when computing was new. Almost half a century later, IBM is using great design to create enterprise-class products that people love to use to get their work done. Scaling modern design across a portfolio of thousands of products that serve clients in more than 170 countries is much more than a two-pizza team challenge—and we like it that way.”

(Phil Gilbert a.k.a. @philgilbertsr ~ AIGA Gain conference 2014)

Cascading Style Sheets: Thesis submitted for the degree of Doctor Philosophiœ

Always go to the source to read the real intensions.

“The topic of this thesis is style sheet languages for structured documents on the web. Due to characteristics of the web – including a screen-centric publishing model, a multitude of output devices, uncertain delivery, strong user preferences, and the possibility for later binding between content and style – the hypothesis is that the web calls for different style sheet languages than does traditional electronic publishing. Style sheet languages that were developed and used prior to the web are analyzed and compared with style sheet proposals for the web between 1993-1996. The dissertation describes the design of a web-centric style sheet language known as Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). CSS has several notable features including: cascading, pseudo-classes and pseudo-elements, forward-compatible parsing rules, support for different media types, and a strong emphasis on selectors. Problems in CSS are analyzed, and recommended future research is described.”

(Håkon Wium Lie, 1994-2005)

UX in an Agile process

Examples are great, but in the end we need more abstraction from all of them.

“Originally, the field of usability and interaction design was slow, cumbersome and costly. These were some of the reasons that it was not adopted very fast among practitioners. However, recent years a lot of the methods and techniques have been adapted to better fit the fast moving development processes that are predominant in software companies today. But what do you do when you can’t include users because of NDAs? How do you handle the fierce security demands, that are part of your project? Does your customer really know their users, or do they only think they do? And when you have a deadline, how do you avoid UI slowing your progress? This talk is a case story of how UX was included in the agile development process that resulted in the first Danish mobile bank app: Danske Banks mobile banking app. “

(Janne Jul Jensen a.k.a. @jjjtrifork ~ GOTO Conference 2014)

The five golden rules of responsive web design

Can’t we just call it web design. Tableless web design from a few years ago did disappear just like that. Why not rwd?

“So gone are the days when all a designer used to worry about was the juxtaposition of content, the colours used and the typography styles of their web pages. We are no longer in a world where designers hired simply to ‘colour in’ detailed wireframes in a typical waterfall-style project. We’ve now got to consider so much more. We have to begin to understand how our sites are being built, and the process around prioritising our content to suit the user. And the the only way to truly understand this is to roll our sleeves up and get learning.”

(Daniel Scott ~ eConsultancy)

Establish user experience transformation as a continuous evolution

Sometimes it’s going really fast when a technology giant puts its weight behind it.

“Many enterprises have committed to and invested in large digital transformations; they now need to understand that these transformations are merely the first iteration of a continuous cycle. The most successful enterprises recognize that digital initiatives are never complete – they evolve. (…) Establishing a foundation for continuous UX improvement with an end-to-end governance process and structure across an entire enterprise is critical.”

(Richard Berkman a.k.a. @RichBerk & Marvin Klein a.k.a. @thouxghts ~ IBM Interactive Experience)

Forms: The complete guide

Capturing data online has been a field of design and implementation for many years. Also, designing the best paper forms has been around for more than half a century. A different medium doesn’t necessarily mean different design principles.

“Forms are one of the most important parts of any site or app – they are the most common way for our users to give us the information that we need to help them do what they want to do.”

(Martin Polley a.k.a. @martinpolley ~ Boxes and Arrows)

Expanding the 3Cs framework for the IoT ecosystem: Multi-device experiences can be approached in very diverse ways in a connected world

IoT shaking up the UX design world.

“The Holy Grail lies in making that data actionable for people, preferably in an intelligent and seamless way, so that it actively helps them achieve their goals. Nest is a good example of a product experience that goes that extra mile — from just informing users with its data, to using that data behind the scenes to fuel the product behavior in an adaptive, contextual manner.”

(Jenn Webb a.k.a. @JennWebb ~ Radar O’Reilly)

Wearable technology: Designing the fashion of the future

Fashion gets enriched by information technology, therefore information design must be incorporated.

“A lot of people in the mobile industry were surprised that mobile happened as fast as it did. Once the iPhone was released, within two years we saw companies like Motorola and Nokia go from top of the mobile phone world into basically junk stock. And I think a lot of people see wearables as sort of that next big tidal wave. People don’t want what happened in mobile to happen again, so they’re interested in wearables.”

(Laura Kudia a.k.a. @laurakudia ~ Why this way)

Architecture, design, and the connected environment

Great description of the distinction between architecture and design. Like InfoArch and InfoDesign, human cognition and perception.

“(…) user interface design is a context-specific articulation of an underlying information architecture. It is this IA foundation that provides the direct connection to how human end users find value in content and functionality. The articulatory relationship between architecture and design creates consistency of experience across diverse platforms and works to communicate the underlying information model we’ve asked users to adopt. (…) This basic distinction between architecture and design is not a new idea, but in the context of the Internet of Things, it does present architects and designers with a new set of challenges. In order to get a better sense of what has changed in this new context, it’s worth taking a closer look at how the traditional model of IA for the web works.”

(Andy Fitzgerald a.k.a. @andybywire & +Andy Fitzgerald ~ O’Reilly)

Why Her will dominate UI design even more than Minority Report

Movies as a source of inspiration and vision visualization for HCI designers has grown more mature.

“It’s not just that Her, the movie, is focused on people. It also shows us a future where technology is more people-centric. The world Her shows us is one where the technology has receded, or one where we’ve let it recede. It’s a world where the pendulum has swung back the other direction, where a new generation of designers and consumers have accepted that technology isn’t an end in itself – that it’s the real world we’re supposed to be connecting to.”

(Kyle VanHemert a.k.a. @kvanhemert Wired)

Surveying the big screen

And what about wall-size screens or future iTVs?

“(…) by embracing large screens, designers have the opportunity to work within a larger fold, presenting the user with more content simultaneously, lessen scrolling on longer pages, and create a richer, more expansive user experience. And by using the same practices we developed to adapt layouts to smaller screens and identifying some common patterns for large screens, we need not necessarily introduce extra cost or time to our projects.”

(Mike Pick a.k.a. @mikepick ~ A List Apart)

Responsive typography

Online typography, typefaces and fonts get mature, finally.

“With the chaos of different screen sizes and a new generation of web browsers, the design paradigms of layout and typography have shifted away from static layouts and system fonts to dynamic layouts and custom web fonts. But screens have not just changed in size but also in pixel density. In other words: maybe we do not just need responsive layouts, we might also need responsive typefaces.”

(Oliver Reichenstein a.k.a. @iA ~ Fronteers 2013)

Why Moore’s Law doesn’t influence design these days: Less is “Moore”

The end of a long-lasting law. New law will be based upon another perspective of technology: paralellism.

“Technology cycles have been on a tear for decades, with each chip iteration bringing more capabilities at lower prices. But less can be more in tech products-and design is the way to balance that factor.”

(Kevin C. Tofel ~ GigaOm)

Responsive web design: Relying too much on screen size

Hardware form factor only is just for one-dimensional designers.

“As people continue to go online using an ever increasing diversity of devices, responsive Web design has helped teams build amazing sites and apps that adapt their designs to smartphones, desktops, and everything in between. But many of these solutions are relying too much on a single factor to make important design decisions: screen size.”

(Luke Wroblewski a.k.a. @lukew)

Why cards are the future of the Web

Cards and tags, a magic duo. Ask Paul Otlet or Bill Atkinson.

“We are currently witnessing a re-architecture of the web, away from pages and destinations, towards completely personalised experiences built on an aggregation of many individual pieces of content. Content being broken down into individual components and re-aggregated is the result of the rise of mobile technologies, billions of screens of all shapes and sizes, and unprecedented access to data from all kinds of sources through APIs and SDKs. This is driving the web away from many pages of content linked together, towards individual pieces of content aggregated together into one experience.”

(Inside Intercom)