Thoughts on listening to users

The root of all usability problems

Inception Fold

When we design websites, we create participatory fictions – imaginary worlds that we invite users to engage in. When the user is unable to successfully engage that fiction, it is because of “imaginative resistance,” the underlying cause of all usability problems.

Chasing after aha! moments

Image of hanging lightbulbs in a dark space

Imagination vs. practicality. They may seem like they are at odds with one another; however, if designers can navigate between these two poles, they might be able to optimize their ability to produce creative insights and amazingly useful products.

5 reasons you should say farewell to focus groups

A number of years ago, British Airways needed to find out what customers wanted. They were adding mini refrigerators to first class seating sections so passengers could help themselves to a snack during long overnight flights, and needed to find out exactly what kind of snacks their passengers would be interested in. So they put together a few focus groups…

Experts or the Crowd: Who has the UX advice you need?

In 2004, James Surowiecki gave a name to the truth and accuracy of the aggregated many: “the wisdom of crowds.” It’s the idea, basically, that the collected knowledge of a large number of people tends to be remarkably correct. So when it comes to UX, who can tell you more – the experts, or the crowd? The answer may not be as clear-cut as you think.

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