Posts Tagged ‘Interaction Design’

Usability is dead…

Friday, June 19th, 2009



On Wednesday (17 June), I attended the SIGCHI Interaction Design Day at Copenhagen’s ITU. It’s an impressive building and apt to host an event about technology and our interaction with it.


I also did a talk about Usability and user centred design and how user experience is always key in what we make.


You can see the presentation on SlideShare here and I will be writing an article about it published next week. I have placed the notes here



Thursday, February 19th, 2009



‘Everyware will call itself by different names, appear differently from one context to another and will almost always wear the appealing masks of safety and convenience.’ – Adam Greenfield


Adam Greenfield‘s book is a thorough examination of ubiquitous computing. As a user experience professional, he writes with the insights of a practitioner. This gives us a book that will be invaluable, as the UX community grapples with the challenges of this concept.


What Greenfield is eager to make us aware of is the lack of a design language, or agreed design standards to build interfaces that will allow users to interact with ‘everyware’ (his term for inexpensive devices that have been integrated into everyday objects and activities).Managing information in the environment of ubicomp is challenging.


Building interfaces that relate to physical objects involves designing systems that relate the mechanics of the device to the user through an illustrative user interface.


When building these systems we have to think beyond just laying out the choices, we have to think about the way the systems work in the real world and show this on screen. We must be aware of the technology in use and what is next in terms of future applications.


Paper Swans and Play-Doh

Sunday, January 25th, 2009



Analog In, Digital Out: Brendan Dawes on Interaction Design

There have been several events where one speaker really shone out from  the rest, and this alongside the more celebrated thought leaders in the UX field. His delivery can best be described as entertaining, humorous story-telling. As the title of the post suggests, he has a different approach to illustrate the importance of interaction design.


His book has been out since 2006 but despite the arrival of the iPhone and Wii his observations are just as important today. Brendan Dawes’ book, ‘Analog In, Digital Out‘ is an important work to this domain for many reasons.


IA convergence and emergence

Monday, May 5th, 2008


Andrew Hinton (Inkblurt) –

Ok a bizarre word to start off with. That grabbed the attention and yes, the talk covered links. But it was more about an explanation of IA, and as Hinton stated, ‘moving the conversation about it forward’.

From the start Hinton mentions emergent theory and I think that’s a very good place to start. If you look at the practice of Information Architecture it is very much in an emergence. It is only as old as web design itself.


Yahoo! Pattern Library is open for all

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008


yahoo   All this talk of recession and the web is currently awash with generosity. After my favourable words about the BBC who gave us a view of their new design language, Yahoo! have decided to go one better and provide their entire pattern library and developer tools for free.

Very kind and of course there is a monetary side to it but the new site is live here and during the day long workshop they gave at the IA Summit 2008 the complete set was given away on a memory key.


Designing Web Navigation

Thursday, March 27th, 2008



James Kalbach succeeds in bringing together the fundamental components that determine great, and not-so-great, user interfaces. The UI itself must always be respected and the author illustrates exactly why in the journey the book takes us on.

What the book does is show how this can be achieved, from the past, notably from the present and into the future. The illustrations are in colour (critically important for any design book) and give clarity to the text’s important insights. (more…)

Concept models explained – Dan Brown from EightShapes at IXDA

Saturday, February 23rd, 2008


Dan Brown at IXDA The most popular post on this blog is about concept models and recently Dan Brown talked at the IXDA conference on the subject. He effectively walks through the chapter of his book, giving an in-depth talk on what they are and why you should use them. Its 37 minutes but well worth it, here.
I have used concept models for a year on 7 large projects and I personally think they are the most valuable design deliverable. Basically its because all other steps in designing a site fall out from this in-depth analysis.

Some interesting points of note from the talk were about collaboration and buy-in, which are so key to the success of any project.

Dan Brown - Eightshapes


Persuasion Architecture – getting the ROI on IA

Monday, February 18th, 2008


persuasion   Persuasion Architecture has been around for years, Bryan Eisenberg (and his brother Jeffrey) founded the term and has been successfully establishing it as a concept and a measurable process. However, in a recent post, he states that after 7 years we still must be aware of usability and optimising the user experience. Regardless of the passage of time, sites still struggle to be successful. (more…)