Posts Taged ux

The Devil is in the (Design) Details

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“Everything is designed.  Few things are designed well.” – Brian Reed

Design is in everything and everything is in design. Think how quickly and powerfully a design experience shapes our opinion of that product, service, brand, organization or outlet, for good or bad. For instance, we know quickly when the logo of a company is bad or plain lousy. And we associate that feeling of disgust with that brand. That’s the power of design. And we are not just talking about logos. It traverses beyond logos to graphics, products, brand, process, interaction and user experience, packaging and services to name a few. One thing is certain that with our exposure to beautifully designed experiences, the design bar has been raised and design-oriented organizations are winning.

Here is an instance of how a small change in the design elements of a mobile app UI can help in creating positive memories.

© Mahuya Ghosh & Pijush Gupta, 2016

This is a clarion call to all individuals and organizations to recognize this new design-driven era and make conscious effort to metamorphose even a humdrum product or service into something more gratifying and more memorable. In the process of bettering your products or service, try to analyze and assess its constituent element; see the elements of their design elements not as a marketing gimmick but as an unpretentious source of competitive advantage. 

We leave you with an example of how seemingly subtle changes like scale or slant can have a profound effect; forcing us to look at things differently. This is the New York City’s new wheelchair symbol.

 

 

 

 

 

May the {design} Force be with you!

 

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Our Book: Mystery to Mastery – Ideation to Productization Playbook

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The Cross Connection: UI / UX

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Three Letter Acronyms (TLA) are here to stay and will make our lives as clichéd as it can be, but it’s the other, often used TLA that is even more confusing. We are referring to the Two Letter Acronym (TLA Again!). Once such “TLA Again” is UI (User Interface) and the other one is UX (User Experience).  Though both are connected and mutually inclusive, they are different. While UI is the space where interactions occurs between humans and a product; UX is how a human perceives something that is visual and has cognitive connotations.

Let’s look at the differences using a very simple example.

 

“User Experience is RELATIVE & CONTEXTUAL” – Mahuya

User Experience is multidisciplinary in the sense that it has been influenced by other disciplines such as graphic design, psychology, research and anthropology.  This of course is not exhaustive. But more often than not, UX is perceived to be just interface design and visual design. Typically, information design comes before interaction design and interaction design comes before visual design.

Let’s see how UX can make a person who prefers cookies with his/her coffee, really smile with delight.

As you can see, the thought process, visual strengths and design principles involved in creating the above product need both a UX Designer and a UI Designer. They all tie in together to create an unforgettable user experience that succeeds in taking a functional product to the next level.

Interestingly, a good UX can exist with a bad UI and vice versa. But it is extremely important to understand the difference between UI and UX as this is where innovation actually gets delivered.

Connecting the Pixels

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“User Experience is about reducing friction for the user to use the product/service and providing contextual information quickly” – Mahuya

1. Avoid use of colors in your wire-frame

Colors can be very powerful yet distracting.  If you must use color, use it wisely.  Focus on the user interaction and overall experience that you want to take feedback on.  Ensure that your discussion is not getting trapped into visual design.

2. Consistency is must

Wire-frames are meant to facilitate your discussion not cause distraction. Therefore, consistency is must.  Ensure consistency in typography, spacing, alignment and icons that you use in the wire-frames.

3. Use Demo Content

Demo content will surely help you tell the story better and also help the users relate to the wire-frame faster – hence, they would be able to provide adequate contextual feedback.

4. Don’t get attached to your wire-frames

Don’t get too emotionally attached to your wires – with rapid ideation, we must be willing to entertain change and pivot often.

5. Don’t be in hurry!

Start wire-framing and validation process early on.  We recommend that you start at least one release ahead so that you have enough data points to decide the best user experience.

There are many in the market but our favourites are the following prototyping and design collaboration tools (they also offer free plans/trials):

People often ask if we must have a huge travel budget to meet users for conducting usability research – well, not always!

Here are some platforms to find remote users and carry out your usability research:

Here’s our favourite UX Research note taking application:

We hope these simple wire-framing practices and easy to use tools help you to design an awesome experience for your product through rapid wire framing.

We would love to hear from you – let us know how it goes!