UX/UI Links, April 2018

Creating products always raises questions along the way.

  • How can we make them more engaging?
  • Are there any straightforward tips to improve them?
  • How can we figure out if they are useful and valuable?
  • How can we help our users embrace changes in our design?
  • Is our test sample size reliable and valid?
  • ... a million more!

If you're interested in the answers to any of these questions, try reading this month's links.

How To Design Emotional Interfaces For Boring Apps

I recently actually paid attention during an airline safety information video for the first time. It was a British Airways collaboration with Comic Relief, and it was genius. Safety information doesn't have to be boring. In fact, it shouldn't be.

Products that help us do unexciting tasks don't have to be humdrum.

Alice Kotlyarenko, Staff Writer at MacPaw explains How To Design Emotional Interfaces For Boring Apps. It's possible using five effective techniques:

  • Gamification
  • Humor
  • Animation
  • Illustration
  • Mascots

Here's everything I've learned from designing 10,000+ UI screens as a lead product designer

Jon Moore is a Senior Design Partner at Innovatemap, co-founder of UX Power Tools, and also a generous writer.

In Here's everything I've learned from designing 10,000+ UI screens as a lead product designer Jon distilled ten maxims to design better products from his years of experience.

Our favorite: "Business and user value usurps EVERYTHING ... If you can deliver value to the user, you will create customers who will drive value to the business."

How to Figure Out if Your Product Actually Solves Problems

There are many facets of the user experience of a product. Seven, according to Peter Morville. We can balance them out in different proportions, but Useful and Valuable should be at the core to guarantee success.

How to Figure Out if Your Product Actually Solves Problems is a project reflection published by Katie Cerar, Product Manager at Shopify Plus. In it, Katie shares the process of a team trying to mitigate risk and ambiguity, to build value and usefulness into a product.

Users Don't Hate Change. They Hate Our Design Choices

Change is neutral by nature. The circumstances in which change happens is what makes it a positive or negative experience.

In Users Don't Hate Change. They Hate Our Design Choices, Jared Spool, Founder of UIE and Co-founder of Center Centre reminds us that we can help users embrace change by following four principles:

  1. Reduce the change to the smallest units possible.
  2. Give users control over when the change affects them.
  3. Show users how the change benefits them.
  4. Respect the users’ existing investment in your design.

Why You Don't Need a Representative Sample in Your User Research

We all struggle with the number and type of participants we should include in our studies. But it doesn't have to be that way.

Usability Expert Jakob Nielsen concluded many years ago that "the best results come from testing no more than five users and running as many small tests as you can afford."

More recently, David Travis, UX Strategist and Researcher at Userfocus challenged this topic and identified four reasons why you don't need a representative sample in your user research. He also shares an antidote for mistakes: iterative design.


There you go!

Five links to get some answers and get a bit better at designing.

Please, leave your favorite articles of this month here in the comments. I'd love to read them!

For more curated content, check our previous posts.

Until next month.

- Jess from The Balsamiq Team


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