Welcome to the March edition of the Userfocus usability and user experience newsletter!
- Message from the Editor
- Steve Jobs on 6 key principles of user experience
- From our archives: 5 reasons why your first user research activity should be a usability test
- What we're reading
- User experience training courses
- User experience quotation of the month
Regular readers will know that I'm fond of a good quotation as I've included one in the newsletter for almost 10 years now. A good quotation can summarise the complex, help you find inspiration and even raise a smile. So this month I decided to write an article based entirely around quotations. I hope you find it inspiring!
A good quotation can be a powerful communication tool. And Steve Jobs, perhaps history’s best design communicator, left us with some profound words. Jobs had an intuitive understanding of great design and user experience as these quotations show. Read the article in full: Steve Jobs on 6 key principles of user experience
A usability test is the wrong research method when you want to discover if there's a real user need for your product; when you want to understand the environment where your system is used; and when you want to find out how people use your product in their daily lives. So why do I almost always recommend a usability test as a team's first user research activity? Read the article in full: 5 reasons why your first user research activity should be a usability test.
Some interesting usability-related articles that got our attention over the last month:
- The 3 signs you’re not doing personas right: you haven’t done ethnographic research; you don’t mention the persona’s goals; and you talk about “Personas” in the plural, without mentioning a primary persona.
- What if you befriended a scammer in Nigeria and offered them paid work as a photo-ethnographer?
- “A Simple Introduction to the Practice of Ethnography and Guide to Ethnographic Fieldnotes”. Looks a little forbidding, but it’s a short read (8 pages) and full of good advice for user researchers.
- 23 Facilitation Tips for Design Sprints: most of these are useful for any facilitation or training session.
- The spine of a Product Wall: The company vision and strategy; product strategy; who we’re building for (personas); what we’re building (roadmap); what’s in research (discovery, design, test); what’s being built; what’s in beta; what’s been released.
- Communicating user research findings in the form of a comic.
- On-the-go debriefing methods to help your team make sense of the research they just observed.
Design ethnography: Take control of customer visits and interviews, May 14-15 2018, London.
This 2-day seminar shows delegates how to get the most from a field visit to a customer location. Find out how to select the right users, when you should observe and when you should ask questions, how to collect observational data and how to analyse it to improve your design. View the full syllabus: Design ethnography: Take control of customer visits and interviews.
Foundation Certificate in User Experience, June 5-7 2018, London.
In this fun and hands-on training course, you'll practice all the key areas of UX — from interviewing your users through to prototyping and usability testing your designs — while you prepare for and take the exam. View the full syllabus: Foundation Certificate in User Experience.
"Good inventors and designers deeply understand their customer. They spend tremendous energy developing that intuition. They study and understand many anecdotes rather than only the averages you’ll find on surveys. They live with the design." — Jeff Bezos.