In March of 2011, I joined HP to lead the User Experience and Front-End Development organization for Consumer Travel. My goal? To design products that transform the future of travel. At the time, eleven UX professionals had already been working on the design for one of our travel applications for several months. Unfortunately, I had to throw the entire design away and start from scratch. Why? In addition to other challenges, the team could not articulate an interaction model. Read More
“Most design jargon deals with how to design rather than what to design and why.”—John Arnott
“I prefer design by experts—people who know what they are doing.”—Donald Norman
Interaction design is a blended endeavor of process, methodology, and attitude. Discussions of process and methodology are pervasive in the interaction design milieu and often revolve around a perceived tension between process and methodology and the role of design within this discipline. To be clear, process is the overarching design framework—for example, an iterative, or spiral, process or a sequential, or waterfall, process. Conversely, a methodology is a prescribed design approach such as user-centered design or genius design. Read More
My last column, “Specifying Behavior,” focused on the importance of interaction designers’ taking full responsibility for designing and clearly communicating the behavior of product user interfaces. At the conclusion of the Design Phase for a product release, interaction designers’ provide key design deliverables that play a crucial role in ensuring their solutions to design problems actually get built. These deliverables might take the form of high-fidelity, interactive prototypes; detailed storyboards that show every state of a user interface in sequence; detailed, comprehensive interaction design specifications; or some combination of these. Whatever form they take, producing these interaction design deliverables is a fundamental part of a successful product design process.
In this installment of On Good Behavior, I’ll provide an overview of a product design process, then discuss some indispensable activities that are part of an effective design process, with a particular focus on those activities that are essential for good interaction design. Although this column focuses primarily on activities that are typically the responsibility of interaction designers, this discussion of the product design process applies to all aspects of UX design. Read More