UX Reality Check: 14 Hard Truths About Users

UX Reality Check: 14 Hard Truths About Users

  • May 27, 2016

It can be hard for designers to take a step back and look at an app or website through users’ eyes. Here’s where to start.

After any amount of time in the design industry, you’ll most certainly hear someone refer to users as “dumb.” People talk about having to “dumb down” interfaces, design for “the lowest common denominator,” and try to make applications “idiot-proof.”

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Why Hiring Usability Experts Can Save Your Bacon, And Bottom Line

Why Hiring Usability Experts Can Save Your Bacon, and Bottom Line

  • April 29, 2016

If you haven’t already incorporated usability into your product design process, you might wonder why it is necessary. After all, it’s certainly possible to release a working, bug-free product without performing any usability work at all. But incorporating user-centered design principles can lead to a much-improved product in several areas. 

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Dragon Front Is A Hearthstone-Like Card Game Built For Virtual Reality

Dragon Front Is a Hearthstone-Like Card Game Built for Virtual Reality

  • March 1, 2016

A game that rethinks the first-person VR approach

Virtual reality has traditionally been about transporting you to new worlds and making you believe you’re really there. It’s the immersion element, known as “presence” in industry lingo, that makes VR feel like magic. So it was refreshing to see Dragon Front, a new VR game in development for the Oculus Rift, take the approach in an entirely different direction. 

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The Climb: The Most Head-Spinning Virtual Reality Experience Yet

The Climb: The Most Head-Spinning Virtual Reality Experience Yet

  • December 30, 2015

Crytek’s new project for the Oculus Rift shows us exactly where VR gaming is going – towards heady and experiential gameplay

Above you, the craggy face of the cliff seems to stretch up endlessly toward the sky, offering perilously few footholds. In the far distance there’s a small village by a beach, bathed in orange sunshine – an exotic idyll. But below you there is … nothing. Nothing but a long deadly drop into the crashing sea far below. Your only option is to keep climbing. 

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The Extra Effort For Great UX

The Extra Effort for Great UX

  • December 7, 2015

One of the best books I’ve ever read on User Experiences is titled “The Elements of User Experience” written by Jesse James Garrett. In the book, he begins by telling the story of a man who wakes up and wonders why his alarm clock never went off. He goes to make coffee, but struggles with the coffeemaker. On his way to work, he stops for gas, but can’t get his credit card to work and has to stand in a long line to pay. When he is finally on his way, he is detoured due to an accident and arrives far later than he ever anticipated. He ends up irritated, sweaty, and lacking a much needed cup of coffee. 

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How To Conduct User Research And Build Features

How to Conduct User Research and Build Features

  • October 5, 2015

“So, Megan, what do you do?”

What a loaded question, geeze. I do lots of things. I run. I eat. I hang out with my 5 rabbits (yeah, they’re awesome). Everyone asks me this question at every networking event, and I still don’t have a succinct, articulate answer. I usually reply with something along the lines of,

“I do user research and product strategy consulting for early stage startups.” 

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How To Fix A Bad User Interface

How to Fix a Bad User Interface

  • September 25, 2015

Hey! This is an excerpt from my book Designing Products People Lovewhich will be published by O’Reilly in December. Learn more about the book and the 20+ product designers from Facebook, Twitter, Slack, etc. who were interviewed about how they work.

Have you ever experienced a user interface that feels lifeless? Have you created a UI that just seems to be missing…something

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Preventing User Errors: Avoiding Unconscious Slips

Preventing User Errors: Avoiding Unconscious Slips

  • August 26, 2015

Summary: Users are often distracted from the task at hand, so prevent unconscious errors by offering suggestions, utilizing constraints, and being flexible.

One of the 10 Usability Heuristics advises that it’s important to communicate errors to users gracefully, actionably, and clearly. However, it’s even better to prevent users from making errors in the first place.

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