Userfocus Usability Newsletter, December 2016

Welcome to the Christmas edition of the Userfocus usability and user experience newsletter!

Message from the Editor

If you're looking around for some Christmas reading, then this month's newsletter is for you. It's a veritable linkfest! There's a new article on books that every UX practitioner should read but this one comes with a twist: the books are all non-UX books. There's an article from our archive on personas and a summary of the articles we published last year, all alongside other stuff we've been reading on user experience across the web.

When guests come to visit on Christmas Day, nothing says you care like whipping out your laptop and spending time on the Internet, so I hope you find it useful!

I hope you have a great Christmas and a productive new year.

David Travis

Non-UX books that every UX practitioner should read

In this article, Philip Hodgson, David Travis and Todd Zazelenchuk share their shortlists of non-UX books for those working in UX… an intentional twist on the usual lists that recommend books about user research and user experience design. So don’t be surprised to find that The Design of Everyday Things, among other classics, is not in this list. No disrespect. No oversight. Simply a different list for you to consider. Read the article in full: Non-UX books that every UX practitioner should read

From our archives: Are personas past their prime?

Personas get a mixed reception from design teams, with some questioning their value. A typical criticism is that persona descriptions are superficially elegant but they lack substance. Another criticism is that persona descriptions are too 'final', and hard to update with new data. Adopting a lightweight persona description, such as the 2½D sketch, addresses these issues while retaining the strengths of traditional personas. Read the article in full: Are personas past their prime?.

Review of the year

Here's a list of the articles we published in 2016 that you may have missed.

I hope you stay with us for another 12 months of wittering!

What we’re reading

Some interesting usability-related articles that got our attention over the last month:

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Upcoming user experience training courses

Foundation Certificate in User Experience, Feb 28-Mar 2 2017, London.

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.

User Experience quotation of the month

"We spend a lot of time designing the bridge, but not enough time thinking about the people who are crossing it." — Prabhjot Singh.

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