It is our responsibility to to have an ironclad rationale to support our design decisions

“We have to arm ourselves with data, research, design patterns, and a clear understanding of our users and our content so our decisions are not made out of fear but out of real, actionable information.  Although our clients may not have articulated reasons for why they want what they want, it is our responsibility to to have an ironclad rationale to support our design decisions.” – Debra Levin Gelman

This quote is from Debra’s article “The Very Narrow Bridge.”

Thanks to @aaroni268 for pointing to this article and quote!

Making a User Experience Strategy Tangible

Making a User Experience Strategy Tangible

User Experience Design begins with the definition of a user experience strategy, or a shared holistic vision for what a product or service will be from the end user’s perspective.  Before a design team can start creating a product or service’s interface and defining specific capabilities, the team needs to evaluate ideas to determine what will meet both user and business goals most effectively.  Defining a user experience strategy up front is critical to making sure that all design decisions map back to a vision that is supported by research and that has defined success criteria.

Read more to understand the elements of a UX strategy, why it’s important to make the strategy tangible, and some techniques to create a tangible UX strategy.

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We need to be collaborators and co-creators with the communities and individuals we are researching

“What has been and always will be true about Design Research is its consideration of people. The future lies not in ignoring needs, but in broadening our horizons. We need to think about more than just insights. We need to be collaborators and co-creators not only with the companies we are designing for, but also the communities and individuals we are researching.” – Tara Mullaney

Tara’s quote summarizes her reflections on IIT’s 2010 Design Research conference in this Core77 article.

(Thanks to Putting People First for linking to this article)

 

Stop pretending content is somebody else’s problem. It’s time to make content matter.

“Until we commit to treating content as a critical asset worthy of strategic planning and meaningful investment, we’ll continue to churn out worthless content in reaction to unmeasured requests… We’ll keep failing to publish useful, usable content that people actually care about.  Stop pretending content is somebody else’s problem. Take up the torch for content strategy. Learn it. Practice it. Promote it. It’s time to make content matter.” – Kristina Halverson

Read more in Kristina’s UIE article “The Discipline of Content Strategy.”

Facebook Privacy Settings Redesign Concept – Part 2

Facebook Privacy Settings Redesign Concept – Part 2


Update: Check out the October 11, 2010 follow-up to this article: “Fortune.com revisits some of my ideas in light of the introduction of Facebook Groups


In Part 1 of this series, I introduced a design project I contributed to for Fortune.com.  Fortune asked several User Experience Designers how they would redesign Facebook’s privacy settings to address recent outcries over privacy concerns on the social networking site.  You can view the final article here. Part 1 focused on the first few phases of the process I went through to define a strategic direction for the redesign.

I identified the two primary privacy problems facing Facebook today as the unwanted public disclosure of information and the difficult management of social networks.  The strategy proposed to address these issues focused around three key themes:

  1. Increase visibility of privacy information by placing it in context of user interactions
  2. Assure users that information they disclose is being disclosed to the intended audience
  3. Improve clarity around privacy settings

This post focuses on the process I went through to progress from many rough ideas to a single refined solution.

  1. Start with Research
  2. Define the Problem
  3. Craft a Strategy
  4. Sketch, Sketch, and Sketch Some More
  5. Narrow Down Ideas and Wireframe
  6. Apply a Visual Design

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Facebook Privacy Settings Redesign Concept – Part 1

Facebook Privacy Settings Redesign Concept – Part 1


Update: Check out the October 11, 2010 follow-up to this article: “Fortune.com revisits some of my ideas in light of the introduction of Facebook Groups


There has been a lot of discussion recently about Facebook and privacy. Users are angry, upset, and concerned that Facebook is exposing their private information without their consent.

JP Mangalindan from Fortune.com recently contacted me and asked me and several other User Experience professionals and designers how we would redesign Facebook’s privacy settings (if you want to jump ahead and see the end result, view his article here).  I then started working on what turned out to be an incredibly challenging design problem.  I quickly learned that creating a safe and secure environment on the popular social network while still accomplishing Facebook’s desire to increase information sharing is easier said than done.

The challenges include needing to thoroughly understand the current privacy concerns, what needs user have to address these concerns, and how to design an interface that not only puts a new face on the current system, but addresses deeper issues with how privacy is integrated into the user experience.

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