Tag Archives: Interaction Design Principles

It’s True: Users Don’t Know What They Want

It’s True: Users Don’t Know What They Want

Users don’t know what they want; this is a fact of user research. Of course, it would be great to be able to ask users “How would you design this?” or “Where would you place this call to action?” or “What do you want to see in this design?” and get beautifully articulated answers thatRead more

Design easy-to-learn systems based on what users know

Design easy-to-learn systems based on what users know

Recently when discussing success metrics for a new design with a client, they indicated that they wanted it to be so simple that their grandmother could walk up and start using it. There are two issues with that kind of statement. First, their grandmother is not one of their users, so why would we everRead more

The Ludicrously Missed Opportunities

The Ludicrously Missed Opportunities

Working in UX has taught me one thing: Never underestimate a user’s will to take shortcuts then question why something doesn’t work. So, what makes sense and how can we avoid this? It makes sense to talk to and, most importantly, listen to a user to find out their needs (and wants, wishes and desires.) ItRead more

Exploring the Design Principle of Hope

Exploring the Design Principle of Hope

This is a time of year when I have extra and renewed hope.  It’s a very happy time for me and my family where we share a sense of hopefulness and cheer. I know we’re among the very fortunate to have this hope along with a holiday to celebrate it, so what does this haveRead more

Is Your Interaction Full of DUST?

Is Your Interaction Full of DUST?

When you are continuously evaluating your product it is easy to keep your product feeling fresh. However, if you are not able to refresh your design on a yearly basis, you need to be more strategic about when to update the design.  Which raises the question;  How do you know when it is time toRead more

Who Are You and What is Your Story?

Who Are You and What is Your Story?

Every website should tell a story in some form or another. Its design should reflect who you are and what you want to tell your users. Your story can be very literal or metaphorical, it all depends on what you have to say. People naturally communicate by telling stories and the ways in which we communicate informationRead more

THE IPAD PRO – A VERY CONFUSED DEVICE

THE IPAD PRO – A VERY CONFUSED DEVICE

So being a bit of an (massive) Apple fan-girl, I was unbelievably excited when the new iPad Pro arrived in our office at the end of last week. There’s something about that simple white box and imagery that just calls to you and tells you that greatness lies within. I was a bit late whenRead more

What do Tamagotchis, Furbies, and Smoke Alarms All Have in Common?

What do Tamagotchis, Furbies, and Smoke Alarms All Have in Common?

The Tamagotchi As a young child in the 90’s with no dog, I desperately wanted a Tamagotchi. Desperately. The pocket-sized virtual pet promised all the love and companionship that I had been missing out on. Everyone in my class seemed to have one and they looked so fun. So, I put it at the topRead more

Exercise Commitment and Longevity: Will the UX of a fitness tracker really make you more active?

Exercise Commitment and Longevity: Will the UX of a fitness tracker really make you more active?

I want to love and embrace fitness trackers. I really do. I’m active AND I love data. Yet despite doing a thorough fitness tracker competitive analysis, my steps go untracked. I flash back to my mom bringing me back-to-school shopping where I would gleefully pick out an agenda in addition to a variety of colouredRead more

Trust Me, Visual Design Matters

Trust Me, Visual Design Matters

A look at how sharing-economy giants, Uber and Airbnb, differ in their approach to garnering trust through messaging and visual design. We’re hearing it in the news more and more, the sharing economy is growing and despite consistent pushback from governments and industries, the advantages and level of demand are keeping tech disruptors such asRead more

Stepping Into Their world – How Improvisation Helps Us Become Better Designers

Stepping Into Their world – How Improvisation Helps Us Become Better Designers

A few years back I ran a workshop at a summer camp for high school students on the topic of user centered design (UCD), which probably doesn’t sound as fun as the workshop where they made ice cream with nitroglycerin. A large portion of the workshop was taken up by an activity where groups ofRead more

What’s your sign?  Designing for the experienced user.

What’s your sign? Designing for the experienced user.

Have you ever faced this signage dilemma?  Amazing, isn’t it?  I know which way to turn for everyone else’s room but my own.* And yet, strangely, I have actually had this happen to be more than once.  Am I missing something?  Or am I less experienced with hotel stays?  Do frequent users of hotels navigateRead more

Trust them; they thought about you – and your money.

Trust them; they thought about you – and your money.

New York City sees over 50 million visitors annually, with numbers rising each year.  This is a huge number and an important one to consider when designing the MTA subway card machine. The MTA card machine needs to be extremely intuitive for new users, as well as time pressed New Yorkers. A bit of historyRead more

Ethnography Experience Mapping and IoT

Ethnography Experience Mapping and IoT

In a couple of weeks Akendi, along with our partners, will be hosting IoT613, in Ottawa.  IoT613 will be a gathering of those interested in designing and coding for IoT as well as the infrastructure, and social aspects of this technology. IoT, aka The Internet of Things, aka The Internet of Everything is a widely used,Read more

Stop “Improving” My Bathrooms

Stop “Improving” My Bathrooms

If the goal of technology is to make our lives easier, then why am I trapped outside of a bathroom by a fancy electronic door lock, unable to enter the password even when I know what it is? The large black screen stares at me in silent judgement as I repeatedly press my finger intoRead more

Drop-downs, Radio buttons, Checkboxes… Oh My!

Drop-downs, Radio buttons, Checkboxes… Oh My!

When creating forms, interaction designers are often faced with having to select a GUI element that dictates the interaction of option selection.  Of course, we all have rules of thumb that we follow but often these choices are also governed by the overall design goals and components of the interface.  Nonetheless there are some considerationsRead more

Making Things Un-Usable (For Some)

Making Things Un-Usable (For Some)

At the hospital where Dr. Henri J. Breault worked in Windsor, Canada, a parent rushing in with a poisoned child was a daily occurrence. Medical teams would hurry to pump the child’s stomach before it was too late, but they didn’t always have enough time. These poisonings were caused by children getting access to pillRead more

Not All Errors Are the Same

Not All Errors Are the Same

While driving the other day I tried to switch the radio station using the controls on my steering wheel.  Instead, I accidentally redialed a friend.  Depending on the mode, the controls that are used to control the radio stations are the same controls that are used to control the phone.  It wasn’t a big deal,Read more