Reviews: Book Reviews

UXmatters has published 56 articles on the topic Book Reviews.

Top 3 Trending Articles on Book Reviews

  1. Designing Your Life Using Design Thinking

    February 10, 2020

    Cover: Designing Your LifeDesign thinking. It’s probably something you use in your job every day to tackle thorny design problems. But have you ever thought about using it to design your life?

    In their book, Designing Your Life, Bill Burnett and Dave Evans outline a step-by-step process, using design thinking, to help people build lives in which they can find fulfillment and joy. This review highlights some techniques from the book that people have used successfully in achieving their professional and career objectives. To get a complete understanding of the Life Design process, though, you need to read the book. Read More

  2. Book Review: Strategic Writing for UX

    February 24, 2020

    Cover: Strategic Writing for UXSome years ago, I noticed a funny thing happening in the Web-design industry almost overnight: quite a few Web designers had changed their title to UX designer. This seemed to me to be an obvious attempt to cash in on the growing popularity of the term User Experience. Even worse, their seeming to assume that User Experience might merely be a better version of Web design demonstrated their fundamental misunderstanding of what User Experience actually is.

    This trend to append UX to titles has continued. We now have UX librarians—a particularly clumsy construction as I see it. While I accept that information architecture is largely a reapplication of information-science concepts, as far as I can tell, a UX librarian is essentially a UX professional who likely has an MLIS degree and happens to work in a library. Read More

  3. Book Review: Weapons of Math Destruction

    May 18, 2020

    Cover: Weapons of Math DestructionSome have said that we are living in the age of algorithms. Netflix uses an algorithm to recommend videos. Facebook has an algorithm that displays the posts and advertisements you’re most likely to interact with. Google’s algorithm serves different search results to different people, based on prior Web traffic. Amazon’s algorithm makes recommendations for things you might want to buy. Match’s algorithm identifies people with whom you are likely to be romantically compatible. We have smart thermostats that use algorithms to learn user’s climate-control preferences. My 11-year-old son uses an algorithm to solve Rubik’s cubes in under a minute.

    An algorithm is really nothing more than a mathematical model or formula that accepts inputs, applies calculations, and provides output. Cathy O’Neil, the author of Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy, introduces the idea of an algorithm as being similar to making a family dinner, taking into account the various likes, dislikes, and quantities her family needs. Algorithms can be extremely useful in automating and understanding large, complex sets of information—for example, searching for a document on your hard disk. But they can also be harmful, as several articles about YouTube have noted, describing how their algorithm tends to lead viewers down rabbit holes of conspiracy theories, propaganda, and salacious content. Read More

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