Lately, I’ve been working more and more with teams spread across different cities, countries and timezones. Though there are times when it’s difficult not having everyone in the same room (you know the drill), user experience design can work quite well remotely when you give thought to the tools and methods you are using. Starting with ideation and sketching, I will have a closer look at how the different steps of the ux design process are affected by remote work.
During the past few months, I’ve had a longer commute than usual. This is why I subscribed to a lot of new podcasts. Compared to my experiences from a couple of years ago, podcasting has really evolved. There are a lot of quality podcasts out there – both from traditional publishers and independent podcasters. The following podcasts are my favorites right now.
Today’s awful weather was perfect for rereading 101 Things I Learned In Architecture School. It’s a short book I bought a few years ago for a UX Book Club meeting. Matthew Frederick included a few thoughts particularly interesting for user experience designers:
Some interesting thoughts from 7:16 to 9:02 on how governments communicate with their citizens and how designers could fix it.
There is still horrible government communications. If I look at the text forms. They are just as bad as they were forty years ago. And I could make them a hundred times better in two days. But they don’t realize it’s something that people can do. They go to their advertising agencies, and their advertising agencies aren’t interesting in forms. You know, they do big campaigns. And if they came to me, I would do the form, not the campaign. […]
Two weeks ago, I spoke at World Usability Day in Hannover. Among great talks on flat design, feedback forms and gestural interaction, I had the pleasure to talk about prototyping in cross-device design projects. Unfortunately, I could not go into details of the tools I presented (in German). I would like to take this as a starting point for a series of blog posts.
How can we talk about physics-based UIs and panels and bubbles that can be flung across the screen if we’re sitting around looking at static mocks? (Hint: we can’t.) It’s no secret that many of us on the Facebook Design team are avid users of QuartzComposer, a visual prototyping tool that lets you create hi-fidelity demos that look and feel like exactly what you want the end product to be. We’ve given a few talks on QC in the past, and its presence at Facebook (introduced by Mike Matas a few years back) has changed the way we design. Not only does QC make working with engineers much easier, it’s also incredibly effective at telling the story of a design. When you see a live, polished, interactable demo, you can instantly understand how something is meant to work and feel, in a way that words or long descriptions or wireframes will never be able to achieve. And that leads to better feedback, and better iterations, and ultimately a better end product. When you are working on something for which the interactions matter so greatly—in this case, a gesture-rich, heavily physics-based ui—anything less simply will not do.
“But if I was starting from scratch and trying to decide which one to use today, I’d probably discount Skeleton because Bootstrap and Foundation both provide so many useful extras. Using the provided components is much faster than reinventing the wheel and doing it yourself.
What it really comes down to is this: Can you live with Bootstrap’s style-heavy approach? And will the same framework be used in production? (This may not be your decision to make…) If so, then it’s more work (not for you, but still) to override Bootstrap’s styles to make it look the way you want.”