Talking down a hostage-taker requires extraordinary empathy and close attention to communication patterns. Bryan McClain and Demetrius Madrigal of ActiveComm Labs show us how we can apply these skills when conducting user research.
Using appropriate fidelity for the situation
Fred Beecher categorizes prototypes along two dimensions of fidelity –visual and functional — and explains how to choose the right kind of prototype that answers the right questions.
A Look at How Bolt|Peters Researched Usability for Spore
Video game research is mostly focus groups and controlled lab play. For EA’s Spore, Bolt|Peters set out to do better by letting the users play the game in a natural environment, without interference from other players, researchers, or arbitrary tasks.
You’ve already learned how to use QTUT to reduce usability study prep time. Now, in part two of his article, Paul Nuschke describes how to expedite usability test sessions, and analysis & reporting.
Sometimes we need to take a step back to ensure that our motivations are in the right place. It can be easy to forget that, when people participate in our studies, they are our partners. Dana Chisnell has taken the time to examine these attitudes and help us understand how to avoid falling into such traps.
Leverage Code as a Design and Specification Platform
Looking for another way of realizing your design deliverables? XHTML are easy to code, can double as specifications, and create constraints that increase design effectiveness.
Completing usability testing in a short amount of time is a challenge that consultancies and development teams often face. In the first part of a two-part series, Paul Nuschke describes how to cut time out of the preparation leading up to a study. Part two will discuss how to run the study and analyze the findings.
Bring Your Wireframes to Life
Alexa Andrzejewski shares her quick yet powerful way for translating static screen designs (from wireframes to visual comps) into interactive prototypes using Flash. Only fairly basic ActionScript knowledge required.
Clients don’t know a thing about their users, and designers think that if they like it, everyone will. Sound familiar? Daniel Lafreniere’s 30-minute “extreme user research” plan comes to the rescue for those of us facing this exact situation. With this practical method, you can generate loads of useful data that will have a real impact on design, thus making the website more effective and profitable.
An Interview With Indi Young
Indi Young talks about the power of the mental model and how it can grow over time and help your organization avoid strategic blindspots. The story includes an excerpt of her new book, and B&A readers are elegible for a discount.