I'm always curious how new research processes begin and then scale up inside existing organizations. How are responsibilites developed and then how are they delegated? How does research get integrated into the larger body, both at insight and operating levels? How do you keep things cohesive, or if they need to fracture, how do you decide what the fault lines are? How do you build the scaffolding for a holistic practice?
In this interview, Olende (currently of Zapier), gives some really interesting insights into how he scopes and structures research in the orgs he's worked in. He describes breaking things rearch "30,000 ft," "10,000 ft," and "ground-level" scopes, to create a holistic picture of a product's place in the market and what it needs to execute. He's also got some great analogies about the difference between research ops and research craft and how to know if it's the kind of work you want to take on (and figure out if your org is in a space where dedicated ops work needs to happen).
Of all the disciplines that fall within user experience design, writing often gets the short end of the stick. Especially on small, fast-moving product teams, we tend to focus on the navigation, interactions, and visual design, but often overlook the importance of the actual words that make up our products. This leaves us vulnerable to applying esoteric industry-specific terminology, using complex language that isn’t accessible to low-literacy users, or missing an opportunity to bring a brand’s personality into the product experience.
At MojoTech, the ability to write well is one of the skill’s we look for in folks who apply to our team, since our small teams require us designers to write the majority of the microcopy for our products. This recent article from Bakken & Bæck is a helpful overview of the importance of UX writing, and provides a number of practical resources you can use to level-up your own writing.
You might've seen this making the rounds on twitter this week, but if you haven't you definitely should check it out. domevents.dev is a neat little playground for, you guessed it, DOM events. I think a lot of people are exposed to DOM events early on in their web dev career, the are one of the fulcrums of interactions in the browser after all. But, many might only be scratching the surface of whats possible with them. This tool helps you understand and visualize whats actually happening when you 'click' on a button, its fun to play around with and theres also an accompanying course on egghead.io. Worth checking out for sure!
Imagine if you could go to a website, type some text, maybe paste a gif, hit publish, and instantly make a webpage about whatever your want.
Many tools do something like that. But this little gem, mmm.page, really gets quick expressiveness right. It’s a website builder for responsive, collage-like websites— allowing you to overlap text, images, GIFs, YouTube videos, etc. It’s really easy to use. And it’s fun! By stripping out some of the usual web constraints, it allows you to indulge in playful exploration. As a bonus, it’s got that mad Geocities energy.
I recently purchased the ADAM bass pedal by Darkglass Electronics. I don’t have any complaints at all with the device itself. It’s an absolute beast, and looks gorgeous. The problems that I have are with the UI of their desktop app and how it impacts the overall UX.
The app is used to interact with your pedal to further dial-in customizations, and configure or load additional presets. I was disappointed because the UI was completely different and as a result the UX was also totally new. I now needed to learn how to use my pedal in yet another way… Everything fell “flat” (pun 110% intended).
This is a case where skeuomorphism would shine. What made and makes skeuomorphism work is the connection to the real world physical things we interact with. The learning curve is reduced and we can get on with the real work. Darkglass is pushing out updates often which is great, but one area they should revisit is the UI. Competitors like Neural DSP have put a lot of work into their plugins to feel more like the real world things we interact with as musicians. I hope to see them tie the experience together a bit more in the future and bring a slick skeuomorphic UI into the mix.
Tobias Van Schneider had this post from a year ago which was nice to read, and I share similar feelings.