Get up to speed on principles and practices for designing trustworthy technology
Designers are urgently needed to help build products and services people trust. Here’s how design professionals are starting to embrace security.
Visual design makes for compelling software; learn about color and how to choose a persuasive color scheme.
This list of questions about the security features of software can help UX professionals collaborate with security experts.
Thinking of design as not only a product but a process can help complex products stay secure as they evolve.
Here are tips for UX copywriting to explain how your technology works and reduce the need for additional user support.
Rather than view feature requests as a set of highly-divergent signals, it can help to try and group requests based on the underlying need that they speak to.
I was in Darmstadt for Privacy and Security Week last week to present Simply Secure's work on ethics in user research at HotPETS. You can check out the paper and slides on GitHub. Resources for ethical research In 2015, we did a field study that we named Straight Talk: New Yorkers on Mobile Messaging and Implications for Privacy. We have since used it as a case study to demonstrate how to work with study participants.
If you're new to UX design, wireframing is a powerful tool to understand how users experience your software. People with technical backgrounds benefit from wireframing because it forces them to take a step back from their coding mentality. Rather than focusing on the technical architecture, wireframing exposes the user-experience structure: how the user moves from one screen to another. Example wireframes taken from GoodUI.org. Both show the same content organized with two different structures, but the left wireframe is better because it discloses choices rather than keeping them hidden.
This post is part of a series explaining our publicly available resources for user research. The previous installment covered how to write screeners to recruit participants. This week, we discuss how to get model releases to share photos from user studies. One approach among manyAt Simply Secure, we strive to balance study participants' privacy with building empathy in an audience of developers, policymakers, and designers by sharing study photos and stories.
Great user experiences are born through the hard work of professionals with a variety of skills. As illustrated by the UX unicorn we've seen before, there's a lot that goes into what we call "design" or "usability.
A screener is a questionnaire that helps researchers recruit the most appropriate participants for their user study research. Here is an example we used for our mobile messaging study in NYC. Blue Ridge Labs handled the recruiting. Most of this screener's questions are a standard part of how they work with potential participants. Our questions, in red, focus on messaging and attitudes towards privacy. Additional questions about VPN use, email, and getting online were for our Fellow Gus Andrews's research.
Naming software is hard because the name needs to convey a lot of meaning about what the program does to an unfamiliar audience, and do it all using only a word or short phrase. You want something memorable and easy to say – which becomes more complex when designing with a global audience in mind. Android's recently-announced competition to name the latest operating system has been met with skepticism. The accompanying parody video pokes fun at naming as an unskilled and silly exercise.
Chatbots, or conversational programs that simulate interactive human speech patterns, are a hot topic in UX right now. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently claimed that “bots are the new apps”, and that they are the interface of the future for tasks like ordering food and booking transportation. In San Francisco, tech elites use a multitude of oft-parodied services like Wag to find dog walkers and Rinse to have their laundry done.
When you're putting your heart and soul into designing, building, or improving a piece of software, tuning in to feedback from users can sometimes get you down. Imagine waking up one morning and finding your project is being mentioned on Twitter in a slew of messages like these: Thanks Snapchat. Your app officially sucks. — Michael (@michaellorelei) April 21, 2016 The Facebook app sucks — em (@emma0wczarzak) April 19, 2016 You know, the YouTube app really kind of sucks.
Your team has reached the stage where you need to hire a professional designer. Maybe you want to finally get a great-looking logo, make a website that doesn't look like it was designed in 1996, or create a really compelling video for your Kickstarter campaign. In any case, you know that it might be tricky to express what you're looking for – especially if you come from a technical background and aren't used to dealing with folks who work in pixels.
Last week Gus and I gave a talk at Shmoocon in DC. The focus was on helping technologists who don't have experience in human-centered design processes conduct basic research to improve their existing open-source tools. We covered four basic steps that we believe even small or volunteer teams can take: Agree on your target users Do an expert review of your UX to identify (& fix) low-hanging fruit Interview real users Build a model of your users and their needs Smooth the path for user feedback Iterate until you get it right Overall the talk was well received, with a few choice quotes making their way onto Twitter.
Sketching storyboards – cartoon-like drawings showing how people use technology – is a way to get more, high-quality ideas for product design. Sketches are useful for taking notes during a discussion and for getting a team on the same page. Fine art drawing is difficult for many, but anyone can master the basics of sketching storyboards – even without drawing skills. You don't need to be artistic, just follow these simple steps.
Our research on New Yorkers’ use of mobile messaging offers actionable insights into how to design secure communication tools for a mass audience.
Last week Google unveiled a new logo as part of an updated brand identity. Professional typographic designers were swift to react. Tobias Frere-Jones, designer of Interstate and other widely-used fonts, said "I really hope this 'e' does not become a thing." Beyond professional designers, the New Yorker's Sarah Larson complained Google "took something we trusted and filed off its dignity." The Google logo reaches the level of cultural commentary in a general interest magazine because its use is so widespread.