Monthly Archives: January 2009

Businesses need to do more than hire designers. They need to be designers.

“For businesses to bottle the kind of experiences that rivet minds and run away with hearts, not just one time but over and over, they’ll need to do more than hire designers. They’ll need to be designers. They’ll need to think like designers, feel like designers, work like designers. The narrow-gauge mindset of the past is insufficient for today’s wicked problems. We can no longer play the music as written. Instead, we have to invent a whole new scale.” - Marty Neumeier

“For businesses to bottle the kind of experiences that rivet minds and run away with hearts, not just one time but over and over, they’ll need to do more than hire designers. They’ll need to be designers. They’ll need to think like designers, feel like designers, work like designers. The narrow-gauge mindset of the past is insufficient for today’s wicked problems. We can no longer play the music as written. Instead, we have to invent a whole new scale.” – Marty Neumeier

Read Marty’s article “Designing the Future of Business” for his thoughts on how design can turn a company into a “powerhouse of nonstop innovation.”

Blaming the user teaches them that the errors are their own

“When we blame the user, we teach them that technology is perfect and that the errors are their own. Because technology is hard to use, we are teaching a generation to be afraid of technology. We are teaching a generation to believe in their own stupidity... It’s not the user’s fault.” - Jono DiCarlo

“When we blame the user, we teach them that technology is perfect and that the errors are their own. Because technology is hard to use, we are teaching a generation to be afraid of technology. We are teaching a generation to believe in their own stupidity… It’s not the user’s fault.” – Jono DiCarlo

Read Jono from Mozilla Labs’ article “These things I believe” for his thoughts on software development and user interface design.

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UX must be an ongoing effort of continually learning about users

“Most [clients] expect experience design to be a discrete activity, solving all their problems with a single functional specification or a single research study. It must be an ongoing effort, a process of continually learning about users, responding to their behaviors, and evolving the product or service.” - Dan Brown

“Most [clients] expect experience design to be a discrete activity, solving all their problems with a single functional specification or a single research study. It must be an ongoing effort, a process of continually learning about users, responding to their behaviors, and evolving the product or service.” – Dan Brown

Dan’s quote is one of many cited by Whitney Hess in her excellent article “10 Most Common Misconceptions About User Experience Design.”

Don’t design for everyone. It’s impossible.

“Don’t design for everyone. It’s impossible. All you end up doing is designing something that makes everyone unhappy.” - Leisa Reichelt

“Don’t design for everyone. It’s impossible. All you end up doing is designing something that makes everyone unhappy.” – Leisa Reichelt

Read Leisa’s article “The general public myth (or, the whole world is not your user)” here.

Why should we all suffer an interface that is unusable?

“If you want to reach the greatest number of users possible, it’s best to write clearly and simply and design your interfaces to be consistent from page to page. For some people, simple usability advice like this is an absolute accessibility need... And anyway, people of all abilities fail tasks that are confusing. Why should we all suffer an interface that proves itself to be unusable?” - Matt May

“If you want to reach the greatest number of users possible, it’s best to write clearly and simply and design your interfaces to be consistent from page to page. For some people, simple usability advice like this is an absolute accessibility need… And anyway, people of all abilities fail tasks that are confusing. Why should we all suffer an interface that proves itself to be unusable?” – Matt May

Read Matt’s article “Accessibility From the Ground Up” from Digital Web Magazine for his thoughts on creating accessible designs.

Focus on what you should be doing, not just what you can

“Technological advances have always been driven more by a mind-set of ‘I can’ than ‘I should’... Technologists love to cram maximum functionality into their products. That’s ‘I can’ thinking, which is driven by peer competition and market forces... But this approach ignores the far more important question of how the consumer will actually use the device... focus on what we should be doing, not just what we can.” - John Maeda

“Technological advances have always been driven more by a mind-set of ‘I can’ than ‘I should’… Technologists love to cram maximum functionality into their products. That’s ‘I can’ thinking, which is driven by peer competition and market forces… But this approach ignores the far more important question of how the consumer will actually use the device… focus on what we should be doing, not just what we can.” – John Maeda

Read John’s “mini manifesto” in this article from Esquire.  Thanks to Experientia for sharing this story.