Using scenarios in design

Recently, I rediscovered Scenarios as a tool in the design process.

If you don’t know scenarios: They are mini-stories with possible users as characters. Take this very short one as an example:

A parent is worried about a ten-year old refusing to drink milk and wants to know if ...

read more ...

Alternatives to face-to-face interviews

The meet-in-real-life, face-to-face interview may be the standard for qualitative user research – but other methods of talking and observing your users are more then just alternatives to it and may have their own unique advantages (and disadvantages).

Our initial use case for online interviews/observation was getting access to remote ...

read more ...

Finding Group Titles in Sticky Notes Clustering

Affinity Diagram with several levels of groupings in a hierarchy
Affinity Diagram with several levels of groupings in a hierarchy

Grouping sticky notes aka affinity diagramming is a method for analyzing comments, ideas, quotes, observations etc. (aka qualitative data) by clustering similar data (which is on sticky notes) and giving these clusters of data a summarizing title.

I noted that ...

read more ...

Illusions of Cognitive Illusions

Cognitive Illusions, common patterns of »irrational thinking« should be overcome: There are books that tell you about these errors and how to avoid them and you can also get an infographic with a list of these, warning you in bright colors. However, it seems that some research on biases may ...

read more ...

Why do beginners rely so heavily on tutorials?

»I'm always amazed at how beginning coders rely so heavily on tutorials. If your library doesn't have a tutorial, it doesn't exist.«
Nolan Lawson/ ‏@nolanlawson (link to tweet)

Indeed: From my own experience it is nearly impossible to learn a library (or programming language or mathematical method ...

read more ...

Reactive Views and the needed JavaScript Toolchain

Reactive Views are the big thing in the Applications-with-JavaScript field. Applications-with-JavaScript are mostly slightly more interactive Web pages. The basic idea is that, when you change the underlying data (Let’s say a username), the library figures out how to update what you see on the screen.

The big player ...

read more ...

Writing Links

Writing good text to appear as a link is admittedly not the most exciting topic. But if you do it right, you can avoid hassle for the user and improve accessibility.

Let’s start with an anti-pattern: The »click here« link. I use it myself. But it is a bad ...

read more ...