Sunday, 26 February 2012

How style & design impact usability

A nice piece that summarises the key areas of style and design that impact on a website or application's ease of use.

Microsoft's approach to personas

A quite long and detailed piece from the Microsoft Journal for Developers. It's not techie, although the focus is on interface design rather than websites.

7 questions to ask of your personas

David Travis sets seven questions for you to ask of your personas. A great way to review your work and make sure you're on the right track.

Strategic content management & CMS selection

A great article by Jonathan Kahn for A List Apart, in which he discusses the problems in CMS design that arise from not thinking enough about the nature of the content or the skills, processes and time of website editors.

The risks in redesign

An interesting little article about how lots of companies approach website redesign. It's about e-commerce websites, but a lot of this resonates with university web publishing too.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

FAQ usability guidelines

A great article on how to get the best out of Frequently Asked Questions. Author Stephen Gracey is pretty up front about the fact that he doesn't like them (a man after my own heart) but his article is pretty balanced and well referenced.

Saturday, 18 February 2012

UX practitioner skills set

A really interesting piece from David Travis who reflects on what he feels it takes to be a successful user experience consultant. Most of us will never be (and possibly don't want to be) a UX consultant, but I think this article is useful for the budding amateur and the jack-of-all-trades.

Search patterns podcasts

A couple of really interesting conversations about trends in searching and navigation behaviour. One of the interviewees is Peter Morville, co-author of the seminal Information Architecture for the WWW (otherwise known as the Polar Bear Book).

Effective scenarios for personas

Persona expert Kim Goodwin talks about scenarios - the stories we place our personas in. To effectively make use of personas, we need to be able to get stakeholders to engage with them. And the best way to do that is to tell stories.

Web forms questions podcast

Jared Spool interviews forms expert Luke Wroblewski covering a load of common questions about what makes forms easier or harder to use. It's a follow up to a paid seminar, but even without seeing this, there's a lot of good advice for anyone creating web forms.

User experience search engine

UX Pond is a great idea - a search engine that only trawls websites related to usability and user experience. As their blurb says - "Why search the ocean when the answer's in the pond?"