Welcome to the August edition of the Userfocus usability and user experience newsletter!
- Message from the Editor
- Going Beyond the Obvious
- From our archives: 7 myths about paper prototyping
- What we're reading
- Upcoming user experience training courses
- User experience quotation of the month
If you had an hour to solve a problem, how would you spend your time?
Albert Einstein once famously said that he would spend the first 55 minutes defining the problem before spending 5 minutes on the solution. In contrast, I think that many product teams would spend all their time generating solutions — before checking if it's even a problem for users.
One of the best ways to ensure you do effective research is to first define the research question properly. So I'm pleased that Philip Hodgson has written an article on this very topic for this month's newsletter. I hope you find it useful.
In which we go on safari, stop at a red light, meet a zoologist, and discover four classic questions that can help us design better user research. Read the article in full: Going Beyond the Obvious.
Paper prototyping is probably the best tool we have to design great user experiences. It allows you to involve users early in the design process, shows you how people will use your system before you've written any code, and supports iterative design. So why are some design teams still resistant to using it? Here are 7 objections I've heard to paper prototyping and why each one is mistaken. Read the article in full: 7 myths about paper prototyping.
Some interesting usability-related articles that got our attention over the last month:
- A set of flashcards for people who want to practice their knowledge of User Experience terminology and jargon.
- The Usability Test Moderator's Flowchart.
- Thorough review of form design guidelines based on eye tracking data.
- 10 interview questions you should ask before joining a new company.
- Notes on experimentation from Richard Feynman. Worth reading if you run UX or Lean experiments.
- Peek Inside a Facebook Design Critique.
- This month's entry in "World's Worst Error Message" competition.
- The "artificial waiting" pattern: construct a facade of thoughtful work, even though the computer is done.
Foundation Certificate in User Experience, Jan 24-26 2017, London.
Our September dates quickly sold out, so we've scheduled another course. Gain the BCS Foundation Certificate in User Experience in this fun and hands-on training course. You'll practice in all the key areas of UX — from interviewing your users through to prototyping and usability testing your designs — while you prepare for and take the exam.
More information about this training course: Foundation Certificate in User Experience.
"Pay attention to what users do, not what they say." — Jakob Nielsen.
Hungry for more?
Foundation Certificate in UX
Gain hands-on practice in all the key areas of UX while you prepare for the BCS Foundation Certificate in User Experience. More details
Every month, we share an in-depth article on user experience with over 10,000 newsletter readers. Want in? Sign up now and download a free guide to usability test moderation.