The field of user experience is rife with terms that lack a mutually agreed-upon meaning. Even the name of the field itself can vary depending on the communicator and the audience. Are we User Experience (UX)? Design Research? Human-Centered Design? Are all of these the same thing?
Often, this lack of clarity on terms leads to debates even among UX professionals about the meanings of certain terms and their appropriate use. Is user experience still the right term if it doesn’t involve a digital component? Where do you stand on the term design thinking? Which term is preferable: human-centered design or user-centered design? Does it matter?
As User Experience develops and gains industry awareness and acceptance across domains, we’ll inevitably engage in more terminology debates. Read More
This is an excerpt from Victor Lombardi’s book Why We Fail: Real Stories and Practical Lessons from Experience Design Failures. 2013, Rosenfeld Media.
Chapter 10: Avoid Failure
Although there is no secret formula for creating successful customer experiences, what I can offer you is a method to help you avoid failure while you search for successful designs. These recommendations counter the [following] deficiencies: …
We’re all vulnerable to psychological biases that make it difficult to accept errors and share information about problems.
Contemporary digital products and services engage us in more complex ways, and because our reasons for using them are multifaceted, our experiences of them are emotional and subjective. They are experiential products, so testing product performance alone is insufficient to avoid failure. Read More
Testing social media is difficult. We are not testing micro interactions, but macro, or global, behaviors. These can be extremely hard to observe—either by using qualitative methods to assess the commentary of individuals or groups or by tracking clicks. When testing social media, we are assessing social influence and motivation, which are much more elusive.
Understanding these types of behaviors won’t let you determine things like the perfect placement of your shopping basket icon. However, it can be invaluable when determining the right timing for providing choices such as content or action buttons. The monitoring of macro behaviors is quantitative in nature, and the data represents broad trends—what people do en masse, not individually. Nevertheless, it is the sum of many people’s behavior that is important rather than the behavior of individuals. Studying societal behaviors requires a different way of thinking—macro thinking—rather than the micro thinking that is characteristic of studying the behaviors of individuals. Read More