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Showing posts from 2014

Where is My Ultra High Definition Digital Sound?

I keep reading about new technologies coming out and hearing about the wearbales innovation. Seems like Silicon Valley is trying very hard to break into some new markets, and they're pushing into some unfamiliar territory to get there. Yesterday I was reading about apps that will tell if the person you're speaking to on your smartphone, is lying. Yup. I suppose there's some benefits to technology like that but here's why it's being developed.... to sell you more stuff. It's more Big Brother  advertising crap.

What about just improving the good old stuff we know everybody loves and will buy? Where is my ultra high definition sound? Better than a CD, over the internet?

This seems like a multi-billion dollar challenge, that is technically and commercially obtainable. The data storage is there, the marketplaces are there, god knows the cloud is there, and the consumers are there - what's missing is the high definition sound! All that takes is some more technolog…

Usability Part 2 - How To Do It

In my last post, Don't Fear The User Part 1 - Empowering Software Development With Usability Techniques, we talked about what usability is. The practice of making software easy to use. And that you accomplish this by listening to your target end user. Incidentally there is a great post on Good Experience today where Mark Hurst mentions his tweet:

Before you get customers involved, first you should probably check if the boss can handle bad news.

This is important because before you try to do usability work your boss needs to be on board. If you're boss is fearful and can't handle bad news then it might be a futile effort. Instead usability should be empowering. It will resolve problems and can help an organization meet its goals.  Now I'm going to elaborate on how to do it.

Step 1: Who is The End User? User Experience Designers when we go to work, we do this thing called "User Centered Design". And all this means is we try to focus on The End User when we'r…

Don't Fear The User Part 1 - Empowering Software Development With Usability Techniques

Usability is the practice of making things easy to use Usability is the practice of making products, especially software, easy to use.  If you can think of some frustrating website that just didn't work, or even a bad customer service experience, you understand how important usability is.

The whole world needs usability. Here we are just talking about the intersection where humans and computers meet - software. Since software is exploding, the industry needs user centered design more than ever. As consumers we need our smart phones and apps to be easy to use. But professionals probably need more usability than consumers... just so they can do their jobs. And sadly, way too many B to B applications and enterprise software are unwieldy and difficult to use.

There is a way to fix software so it's easy to use. Incorporating usability techniques into your development process accomplishes two things. #1 it allows you to focus on the goal of making your product work as best it ca…

Being an Adult, Saying Goodbye to Contracting

You may think that being a professional Web Product Designer right now is a great job, and it is. You may think that being a pro UX Unicorn AND working for yourself as an independent contractor is an ideal situation, and it can be. You might assume that it's wonderful to work from home, though the best part is simply not having to commute. Some people might covet my connectedness, truthfully, it's an expensive curse. The "Ideal" really falls apart when confronted with the reality...

Since 2011 all I wanted was to get off the merry-go-round of freelance work. You might think that having over nineteen years of web experience it would be easy to land a good gig, but I think this hurt me. In Baltimore where I live, depending on who I spoke to it was assumed I was either overqualified (aka expensive), or just too old. I had job leads that didn't manifest. It seemed like every recruiter was playing me (or just bad). I tried to work with a few start-up companies who re…