Archive for the 'Interfaces' Category

Sep 13 2013

Axure Workshop Recap

Update 9/13: Added link to recording.


Last night, Oscar Yépez taught a great introduction to Axure! We downloaded our own copy of Axure onto our laptops and learned how to create an interactive wireframe of an iPhone app. This included how to add objects, images, and actions to make the wireframe come alive. Also, Oscar showed how to effectively create wireframes through the use of master objects and dynamic panels.

For those of you who couldn’t make it, here is the link to the recording!

If you attended the workshop, we are looking for feedback for those who participated. Feel free to leave a comment on the blog or the Facebook page on what you thought of the workshop!

Special thanks to Oscar for providing HFIDers with a new UX skill!


Oscar shows HFIDers how to create an action in a wireframe

Oscar shows HFIDers how to create an action in a wireframe

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May 09 2013

Apple’s 6 Simple Rules for Designing Apps

Published by under Gadgets,Interfaces

“Among iOS developers, the day that you finally submit your app for Apple’s approval can be a tense one. Even when you’ve seemingly followed the guidelines, polished the code and passed every field test, Apple can still reject your app for almost any reason.” Learn more at Mashable.

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Apr 25 2013

Developing Tools to Create Semantic Web Content

“The Semantic Web is a movement that aims to add value and utility to online information by structuring data in a way that both computers and humans can understand. The goal: computer systems that can understand and infer meaning – for instance, a computer system that knows the difference between an “organ” that is a musical instrument, and an “organ” that lives inside your body. Services like Siri, Wolfram Alpha, and Knowledge Graph have shown us what it’s like to consume content on the Semantic Web. But what if your business wants to create Semantic Web content?” View the full article on The Globe and Mail.

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Apr 23 2013

Combining In-Person and Remote Research

“In-person user research has been around the longest, and is still widely used as a great way to gather feedback on websites, advertisements, or software. In-person research usually involves letting users perform tasks on a computer while asking them questions, observing their behaviors and body language, or having them think out loud. Additional hardware can be used, such as eye tracking devices.” See the full story at UX Magazine.

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Apr 18 2013

6 Key Questions for International UX Research

“Are you worried about how customers in other countries will react to your product or service? Not really sure who your international customers even are, or what they want and need? To find out, it might be time to pop outside the domestic market and conduct an international user research study.” Read the full article at UX Magazine.

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Apr 16 2013

Responsive Design: Content to Development

“The concept of responsive design—the practice of creating digital experiences that adapt to seamlessly deliver content suited to the device context of the user’s operating system, screen size, or orientation—has been around for quite some time. For a variety of reasons, more companies are now giving responsive design serious consideration. The implications of moving to a responsive approach of creating adaptable designs can seem overwhelming, but the benefits can be significant.” Read the complete article at UX Magazine.

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Mar 14 2013

Ditch Traditional Wireframes

Published by under Interfaces

Wireframes have played an increasingly leading role in the modern Web development process. They provide a simple way of validating user interface and layout and are cheaper and faster to produce than a final visual comp. However, most of the methods and techniques used to create them are far from being efficient, contradicting the principles and values that made wireframing useful in first place. – Read more about it at UX Magazine

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Feb 26 2013

Design Patterns: When Breaking The Rules Is OK

Published by under Interfaces,New Students

“In 1977, the architect Christopher Alexander cowrote a book named A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction, introducing the concept of pattern language as “a structured method of describing good design practices within a field of expertise.” The goal of the book was to give ordinary people — not just architects and governments — a blueprint for improving their own towns and communities.” Read the full article at Smashing Magazine.

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Feb 21 2013

Ultimate List of Online Content Readability Tests

Published by under Interfaces,Psychology

“While the CIA’s The World Factbook may put the literacy rate of most highly developed nations at 99%—where those age 15 and older can read and write—that doesn’t account for how many can read and write well, or even comfortably. In the United States, one out of seven people have trouble reading anything more challenging than a single sentence, much less a string of them or a series of paragraphs. And in the United Kingdom, one in six struggles with literacy.” View the entire article at Raven Tools.

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Feb 19 2013

Google’s Project Glass: Inside The Prototyping

“At Google X, the company’s now-not-so-top-secret R&D lab, engineers and neuroscientists and artificial-intelligence experts dream up a future without the pressure of market deadlines: driverless cars, robots, space elevators. But for lead product manager Steve Lee, his X pursuits are anything but an exercise in the fantastical: Project Glass, the futuristic eyeware he’s developing with an interactive heads-up display, might just hit market in the near future alongside products like Gmail and Android.” Read the full story on Fast Co. Design.

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Feb 12 2013

Why are Contextual Inquiries so Difficult?

“Contextual inquiries require a difficult balance between traditional interviewing and ethnographic observation. The name contextual inquiry is foreign to most people outside the field of user experience, and people don’t understand what this approach involves, leading to a lot of misconceptions. In this article, I’ll discuss the most common problems you’ll face when conducting contextual inquiries and how to solve them.” Read the full piece at UXmatters.

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Jan 10 2013

Design for All: Accessibility in Service Design

“At its core, accessible design is transformative, flexible, intuitive and customizable, making lives better and tasks easier—core design principles, no matter the audience. While it’s not always easy to understand what accessibility means, there are simple steps that designers can take to start thinking with accessibility in mind.” Read the full article on UX Magazine.

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Jan 08 2013

The Human Body as the Object of Service

“The service design challenges when the human body is the object of service are significant. One particular challenge is the diversity of customers’ contexts and mindsets. The service goal for an airline is getting you to your destination. But as a designer, you cannot assume that the reason someone is traveling is for a vacation at Disney World, a boring business meeting, or a funeral for a close friend. In healthcare and, specifically, for hospitals, the body is the service focus.” View the complete story at UXmatters.

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Jan 03 2013

First Forays Into Responsive Web Development

Published by under Interfaces,Resources

“The general consensus now seems to be “mobile first.” I agree. Starting with a single(ish)-column mobile website is the easiest way to get your CSS off to a great start. However, we use an external design agency, so the time and cost of a new mobile-first design was not feasible. It was left to the front-end developer to translate the existing design onto screens of smaller dimensions.” Read the full article at Smashing Magazine.

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Dec 06 2012

The Two-Click Rule

“Over the past few years we’ve noticed a pattern on the corporate websites we’ve worked on:

  • Most of the visitors enter through search or referrals. By most I mean 80% to 90%.
  • Most visitors will see three or fewer pages. In other words, they will click (or tap) twice.
  • Less than 10% of visitors will see the home page, and fewer will start there.

We’ve started calling this the two-click (or tap) rule: Most people will enter in the middle of your site, click (or tap) twice, then leave. Unlike the three-click rule there’s at least some evidence for it.

The two-click rule has important implications for how we think about content and information architecture for corporate websites.”

Read the full article on nForm.

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Nov 29 2012

The Gutenberg Diagram, Z-Pattern, and F-Pattern

“Several layout patterns are often recommended to take advantage of how people scan or read through a design. [Three] of the more common are the Gutenberg [D]iagram, the [Z-P]attern layout, and the [F-P]attern layout.

Each offers advice for where to place important information, but…these patterns are often misunderstood and followed without thought to what they really describe.

[Let’s] walk through the what and why of each pattern and then offer something else that gives you as a designer more control over where your viewer’s eye moves across your design.”

Read the full article on Van SEO Design.

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Nov 15 2012

The Extinction of the Scrollbar

“Since the early days of GUIs, the scrollbar has provided a way for users to navigate around an object that’s too large to fit within a window. However, over the past few years, users have been given other ways to scroll: mice with scrollwheels, laptop trackpads with scrolling capabilities, and a new set of gestures for mobile devices and tablets. With this reduction of the role of scrollbars, it’s important for designers to be conscious of the scrollbar’s benefits and drawbacks, and to know how to replace it with other elements that have similar benefits.”

Read the full article on UX Magazine.

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Nov 13 2012

New Design Practices for Touch-free Interactions

“Touch interaction has become practically ubiquitous in developed markets, and that has changed users’ expectations and the way UX practitioners think about human–computer interaction (HCI). Now, touch-free gestures and Natural Language Interaction (NLI) are bleeding into the computing mainstream the way touch did years ago. These will again disrupt UX, from the heuristics that guide us, to our design patterns and deliverables.” Read the full article on UX Magazine.

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Nov 08 2012

7 Basic Best Practices for Buttons

“Buttons are hardly newfangled or glamorous; they’re just an ordinary, every-day element of interaction design. Despite this, because buttons are a vital element in creating a smooth conversational flow in Web, form, and survey experiences, it’s worth paying attention to these basic best practices for buttons.” Read the full article on UXmatters.

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Oct 23 2012

Responsive Web Design: 50 Examples and Tips

Responsive web design the concept of developing a site in a manner that helps the layout to adapt according to the user’s computer screen resolution. More precisely, the concept allows for an advanced four-column layout of 1292 pixels wide on a 1025 pixel width screen, that auto-simplifies into two columns and suitably resolves on a smartphone or tablet screen. Read the full article.

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