Thoughts on listening to users

UI fail from the UI gurus

Here’s a user interface failure courtesy of Apple: Note that the window cannot be expanded (why?). So how exactly are we supposed to know what the “Convert Selected Simplified C…” refers to? I’m not sure why any dialog windows are designed to be unexpandable – what’s the point of this constraint? I guess on the bright side, very very few people understand or use the Services menu anyway. But when.. Read More

What leads to Why

Earlier we wrote about the difference between quantitative usability measurements, which answer the question: What are users doing? and qualitative measurements (for example, as provided by TryMyUi), which answer Why are they doing what they are doing? In this article Jeff Sauro provides a good example.

3 facets defining the user experience

At TryMyUI we review a lot of user testing videos. In these narrated videos the tester verbalizes her thoughts as she performs the tasks in the usability test. In this free-form mode, we are actually getting information that points to 3 characteristics that affect the user experience.

More on the ideal user

When most people think of performing usability testing, they think of using novices to see if the website is apparent to someone with very little experience. However, having now reviewed several hundred user tests done by both novice and experienced internet users, we’ve realized that both yield interesting information. The novice user is interesting because they don’t have a predictable model in their minds, so it’s illuminating to see how.. Read More

Looking for the ideal usability tester…

Let’s assume we’re about to embark on a user experience study and want to solicit the opinions of a handful of users, be it for a moderated or unmoderated study. How should we decide what users to pick and listen to? Would any person off the street work, or are there key criteria we should pay attention to?