Tag Archives: usability

Beware of UX Charlatans

Beware of UX Charlatans

The television faith healers of the digital era. The Rise of the Charlatans A lot of companies are becoming more familiar with the terms “UX”, “User Experience”, and “Usability”, and this is great! There’s a growing community of people who are beginning to see this as an essential part of the design process. However, asRead 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

Seeing is not always believing.

Seeing is not always believing.

We have 5 senses (some people claim they have six) and you cannot trust any of them. Cognitive psychologists studying exteroception try to make sense of how we make sense of our senses. The results of some of the experiments conducted are quite remarkable. Give people a perfectly round coin to hold and distort theirRead more

Always Be Testing

Always Be Testing

I recently watched the movie Glengarry Glen Ross (I know, I’m about 20 years late) and although it’s an old movie, the famous message conveyed “Always Be Closing” still holds true. In the field of web design, there’s a similar mantra that we should all follow: Always Be Testing. Usability is defined as the effectiveness, efficiencyRead more

Understanding Defaults and Notifications (or, why I hate my dishwasher) – Part 2

Understanding Defaults and Notifications (or, why I hate my dishwasher) – Part 2

This is part two of a two part series. In part one we went over the guidelines around using defaults and talked about some pitfalls to avoid. You can go back and read it at Understanding Defaults and Notifications (or, why I hate my dishwasher). So, last time we finished talking about my dishwasher’s useRead more

Akendi Goes to the Movies – James Bond

Akendi Goes to the Movies – James Bond

  As we gear up for summer blockbusters, I thought it would be fun to take a look at how usability and user testing is represented in the fictional worlds created on the silver screen.  For this initial post of “Akendi Goes to the Movies” I thought I would start with something that is aRead more

How to not sabotage your own card sort: Tips for success

How to not sabotage your own card sort: Tips for success

Card sorting is a great method of exploring and understanding how users organize and label content.  In our post on Card Sorting, we provided the basics for running a card sort, types of card sorts and things to be cognisant of when facilitating a card sort. Applying what you have learned can be a challengeRead more

Prototyping for Usability Testing – How detailed should you get?

Prototyping for Usability Testing – How detailed should you get?

At Akendi, we’re always usability testing something or the other, be it a live, fully functioning App or a prototype of a product at some stage in the development life cycle.  When testing prototypes, more often than not we find that there is a mismatch between the prototype fidelity and the underlying goals of testing. Read more

IS RESPONSIVE DESIGN GREAT MOBILE DESIGN?

IS RESPONSIVE DESIGN GREAT MOBILE DESIGN?

The first time in your career that you notice things have changed since you started is a pretty exciting milestone.  In a young industry like UX, this doesn’t take long.  The biggest changes I have noticed have been in the mobile space.   Specifically, I can remember a time when designing mobile experiences meant only designingRead more

Less is more… if you collaborate

Less is more… if you collaborate

The smart phone is an octopus in a box. It is a calculator, web browser, instant messaging device, social hub, spirit level, star map, sat nav and more in a handy single mobile package. In addition, you can also still make phone calls with it. All this functionality comes without the user manuals that we would normally expectRead more

UX as a Silver Bullet

UX as a Silver Bullet

At some point, in your early career as a UX designer, it happens: you are working on a project with multiple, even many stakeholders that each put in their “2 cents”, their point of view on button labels, screen flows, screen element placement and color choices. Their seemingly ‘small’ suggestions turn out to be muchRead more

Visual Design for Mobile Banking Apps

Visual Design for Mobile Banking Apps

For years I’ve been taking advantage of doing my personal banking online in the comfort of my own home. It was a transition that was easy to make with the prospect of avoiding long lineups at my local branch along with other inpatient clients trying to get on with the business of day-to-day life. RecentlyRead more

LEAP Motion Controller – User Experience Review

LEAP Motion Controller – User Experience Review

If you’ve ever tried to pinch, squeeze, tap or swipe a non-touch screen, you already understand why the Leap Motion controller was created.   For only $80, this iPod Nano sized device promises to turn any screen into a multi-touch display.  Before its release, countless teaser videos emerged online showing users seamlessly interacting with the deviceRead more

Unboxing Ubi: A Usability Review

Unboxing Ubi: A Usability Review

For most, consumer products are one of the first touch points with the user which occurs at the unboxing.  Like children at Christmas, the user will most likely be eagerly anticipating opening the box, unwrapping the product and start using their new toy.  However, a poor, out-of-the-box experience, will result in user frustration, and theRead more

What Usability Testing Does and Doesn’t Tell You

What Usability Testing Does and Doesn’t Tell You

We at Akendi are increasingly asked to conduct usability tests with digital products in the later stages of product development. This means we come in to test at the stage where the wireframes are already worked out and the client is working on the coding and visual / brand design of the digital product. So,Read more

How to determine if your design is ‘easy to use’

How to determine if your design is ‘easy to use’

Good design depends on whether or not users “get it” and the only way to evaluate if you successfully communicated how the design works is by measuring the product usability. The ISO 9241-11 standard evaluates product usability along three criteria: Effectiveness – sometimes called utility, usefulness, regardless of the label the basic question to answerRead more

Intuitive: A word that isn’t that intuitive

Intuitive: A word that isn’t that intuitive

I recently had a conversation with a client where the topic of drag-and-drop was brought up.  They had been using drag-and-drop in one of their products because they considered it an intuitive way for their customers to interact with their software.  Through the conversation I realized we had stumbled on some common misconceptions around whatRead more