Interaction Design

Interaction design

I began my journey in Interaction design not too long ago, and I’m not a good blogger. But, I’m so excited about my work that I want to share it with the whole world.

Interaction design is not something that you come out of blue and say “This is how you should do.” Rather it’s about understanding  your Users, who is the king “how they do it? What do they want? How easy can it be made for the end users?” And incorporating those understandings in a  scientific method and applying all the principles of experience design into the design,  to make it work.

I KNOW… It’s not an easy task! Let me help you to go step by step.

I will share some information for you to get started on interaction design, read blogs at uxmag.com or ixda.org or uxbooth.com or any interaction design bloggers whom you prefer, keep updating yourself with what’s happening in the market and about current trends or read about how other companies are going at it; Ex. HFR+D(us), LUMA, Maya Design, HFI International, zurb or cooper etc,

One of the effective ways of creating interaction design is to  understand your stakeholders needs, research  the top competitors’ products/design in the market and understand what, how and whys of their design. Once you understand why the top design is in top position, there is nothing that can stop you from sketching that cool User interface that will give a enhanced experience to your end users… cheers!

STILL DON”T GET IT?

I will give a quick understanding of interaction design.
According to “Interaction design best practices” book by Jerry Cao – Interaction design can be broken down into 5 dimensions. They are words, visuals, objects/space, time, and behaviour.
Words are interactions.
Visuals and objects/space are what users interact with.
Time is what users interact within.
And finally, behaviour is how users and the interface act and react.

interaction design

ALWAYS KEEP IN MIND:

Interaction is the essence of all user experiences. It is the conversation between your product and your user, and if the conversation is boring, your user will leave and talk to someone more interesting.

5 Pillars of user design:

Not exactly the pillars which you have in mind. These 5 pillars are foundations of a good design, it’s not your job study and apply all this, but to become a good interaction designer it’s essential to keep this in mind.

Goal-driven Design
while you might not be the person who’s conducting the user research (especially if there’s a UX researcher or UX designer around), you still need to know how to apply the results.

Usability
In many ways, usability is the bare minimum of interaction design. If your audience can’t use your product, they certainly won’t desire it.

Affordances & Signifiers
the concept of affordances is that a function should speak for itself, and suggest its own use (i.e., a road affords walking). Signifiers are what hint at the affordance (i.e., the road’s flat surface signals you to walk with your feet).

Learnability
In an ideal world, a user would remember every function after only a single use, but we do not live in idealism. The reality is that familiarity and intuition must be consciously designed into the interface.

Feedback & Response Time
Feedback is the heart of interaction. If user interaction is a conversation between your user and the product, then your product better participate in a friendly, interesting, and helpful manner.

Now you have understood what  is needs to be that great Interaction designer … Cheers! For all young and amateur interaction designers who are out there! I will race you till the end.”
ITS ON!!!

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Empathy

Empathy

In my journey of over 2 decades of working across the globe and in diverse areas of businesses addressing Human Centered Design, User Experience, Usability and pure research, one thing that struck a strong chord is – EMPATHY!

The journey of ‘EMPATHY’ is both inwards and outwards, inwards within your group, teams and organizations; outwards, towards your customers and their end users.
Inwards, so that being empathetic towards each other’s skills, you get to play your part where it is necessary, rather than ‘know-it-all’ which often fails, that’s why we have a team, right :)-

It is important to sensitize and be sensitive towards each other in the team.
In any project, all have a singular focus to make something successful and more usable, either new or towards improving the old, for which we need differential UX, research, design, production & development expertise to make that happen- Empathy inwards empowers and makes the journey fun too!

Outwards, the user is the ruler (king or queen), being empathetic towards the test participant, the test metrics and attention to every little detail, go a long way in a successful outcome. Empathy is at a role play from the sketch, to the workflows of a product or system, to the research protocols, prototypes, design, packaging, installation, buying experiences, support, and so on.

If your test script requires putting your end user to daunting preparatory tasks before actually testing or getting any feedback, you are most likely preparing to fail. E.g. a test required a 60+ year old participant to open a vacuum packed bottle with bare hands while reading a thick mini manual with very tiny text (and without glasses), all the tests results were drastic and obviously so!

In a test instance recently, my colleagues smeared the spectacle glasses with wax to blur the vision and test an app for older people who were required to use the app wearing glasses. In yet another research for a public touch-phone kiosk experience usability testing, the team actually tested the MVP prototype in extreme cold and high windchill conditions to go through the experience of using the device with and without gloves – to know what it be like to go though the touch experience in such weather and complete the tasks. It is important to step out of the offices and meeting rooms and get into the environment of the users, the actual roles and go through the experience journey of your users – that’s empathy too!
All along the journey of all innovations, it is about designing something to solve a particular problem, without empathy that’s almost going to be a ‘no-go’ business model- Empathy Empowers!

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Ethnographic Study

Ethnography Study

Today, we would like to share our understanding and the way we go about conducting Ethnographic research at Human Factors Research + Design Let’s understand what Ethnography is? Ethnography is derived from a geek word. Ethnos means People or a nation. Graphy means I write. Hence we can say Ethnography is a study of people and cultures. Ethnography study is designed to explore cultural circumstances where the researchers observe people or culture from subject of study perspective.

An ethnographic understanding is developed through close exploration of several sources of data. Using these data sources as a foundation, the ethnographer relies on a cultural frame of analysis

Now that we have understood what ethnography study is let’s understand how it is done.

Collecting Data/Information for ethnography study are meant to record people’s ordinary activities and meanings in naturally occurring scenarios. The goal of ethnography study is to collect information in a way where researcher puts less personal thoughts on the data.

Interviews are often taped using recording mediums while also taking notes so that nothing can be missed out and availing all information later for 100% understanding and analysis. Secondary research and document analysis are also used to provide deep insight into the research topic.

Ethnographic Study

In order to make the information collection and interpretation transparent, Ethnography researchers often try to be reflexive. Reflexivity refers to the researcher’s goal to explore the perspectives in which researcher’s involvement with a particular study influences, acts upon and informs such research”.

Ethnographic research can range from a realist perspective, in which behavior is observed, to a constructionist perspective where understanding is socially constructed by the researcher and subjects. Research can range from an objectivist account of fixed, observable behaviors to an interpretive narrative describing “the interplay of individual agency and social structure.” Critical theory researchers address “issues of power within the researcher-researched relationships and the links between knowledge and power.”

When to use Ethnography?

Ethnographic study is best used in the early stages of development, when you need to know more about the issues surrounding the use of a product rather than actual metrics. In the really early stages of development, when you just have an idea that you might need a product to satisfy this particular need, field observations help gather user requirements and issues for incorporation into preliminary designs.

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Interaction Design

Introduction to User Interface Design (UI Design)

In simple terms User interface design (UI Design) is a method of making the user’s interaction as simple and efficient as possible for accomplishing their goals. User interface design works by anticipating what users might need to do and ensuring that the interface has elements that are easy to access, understand, and use to facilitate those actions.

User Interface Design (UI Design) involves same basic human interactions yet also requires some unique skills, experience and knowledge. User interface design (UI design) is used in variety of projects from computers to cars and commercial planes. So the User interface designers (UI Designers) are tend to specialize in certain type of projects and have skills based on their expertise. For example; Software designs, User research, web research, or industrial design.

User Interface Design

How we can achieve a good User interface Design (UI Design)?

  • In UI design it is important to gather function requirements – assembling a list of the functions required by the system to accomplish the goals of the project and the potential need of the users.
  • User and task analysis – In UI design user and task analysis is a form of field research, it’s the analysis of the potential users of the system by studying how they perform the tasks that the design must support, and conducting interviews to elucidate their goals.
  • Information architecture – development of the process and/or information flow of the system is also an important process of a good user interface design (i.e. for phone tree systems, this would be an option tree flowchart and for web sites this would be a site flow that shows the hierarchy of the pages).
  • Prototyping – development of wireframes, either in the form of paper prototypes or simple interactive screens. These prototypes are stripped of all look & feel elements and most content in order to concentrate on the interface.
  • Usability testing – testing of the prototypes of UI design on an actual user—often using a technique called think aloud protocol where you ask the user to talk about their thoughts during the experience. User interface design testing allows the designer to understand the reception of the design from the viewer’s standpoint, and thus facilitates creating successful applications.
  • Graphical user interface design – actual look and feel design of the final graphical user interface (GUI). It may be based on the findings developed during the user research, and refined to fix any usability problems found through the results of testing.

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Application testing

Usability Testing

Today we are going to talk about Usability testing. As it sounds it’s all about testing how usable a product is with the help of users. Usability testing is a technique used in user-centered interaction. It gives direct input on how real users use the system.

In other words; Usability testing measures a human-made product’s ability to meet its purpose.

 

Well let’s understand the methods that are used in Usability Testing-

Making a usability test includes creating a scenario, or a realistic situation, where a group of people perform a list of tasks using the test product, while observers or researchers watch, record and take notes.

Usability Testing

A/B testing

In web development and marketing, A/B testing is an experimental approach to UX design, which identifies changes between 2 websites or designs in a comparative manner in order to understand the differences of features, process, experiences etc,.

Remote Usability Testing

Remote usability tests is a method of usability testing, its used when the product or service being tested or group of researchers located in different places or time zones. Conducting a traditional lab method of usability testing creates both cost and logistical challenges. These concerns led to research on remote usability evaluation, with the user and the evaluators separated over space and time

Hallway testing

Hallway testing is a general method of usability testing. Here instead of using trained group of testers or the stake holders, few randomly-selected people are brought in to test the product or service which is being tested.

Expert review

Expert review is a method of usability testing. As the name suggests, this method conducted by bringing in experts with experience in the field to evaluate the usability of a product.

Automated expert review

Automated expert review is a method of usability testing which is similar to expert reviews, automated expert reviews provide usability testing but through the use of applications or programs given rules for good design and heuristics. An automated review can be finished more quickly and consistently but, it might not provide as much detail and insight as reviews from experts.

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Localization-and-Internationalization

Localization and Internationalization

Localization not in terms of language but in terms of understandability is what companies require when they go web. Websites are passé. Human-centric websites are in. The whole point in having a web presence goes defunct if the user/visitor is unable to traverse through the site in search of what is being looked for. The old web adage ‘WYSIWYG’ still promises value for the companies, as the basic principle underlined in it is associated with the user benefit.Localization and Internationalization.

Localization not in terms of language but in terms of understandability is what companies require when they go web. Websites are passé. Human-centric websites are in. The whole point in having a web presence goes defunct if the user/visitor is unable to traverse through the site in search of what is being looked for. The old web adage ‘WYSIWYG’ still promises value for the companies, as the basic principle underlined in it is associated with the user benefit.Localization and Internationalization

Localization not in terms of language but in terms of understandability is what companies require when they go web. Websites are passé. Human-centric websites are in. The whole point in having a web presence goes defunct if the user/visitor is unable to traverse through the site in search of what is being looked for. The old web adage ‘WYSIWYG’ still promises value for the companies, as the basic principle underlined in it is associated with the user benefit.Localization and Internationalization

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Usability

Its All About Usability

Its All About UsabilityIn today’s competitive market, when products have the same technology, price, performance and features; design becomes the differentiator. Every design needs to be tested to see how it fits in the users environment, and it could be anywhere home, outside or work place. Understanding user perspective of any product design is vital to achieve user friendly, accessible, and comfortable designs. Research and usability testing is a part of design innovation, the more you focus on users the more your product sells in the market.

Its All About Usabilit In today’s competitive market, when products have the same technology, price, performance and features; design becomes the differentiator. Every design needs to be tested to see how it fits in the users environment, and it could be anywhere home, outside or work place. Understanding user perspective of any product design is vital to achieve user friendly, accessible, and comfortable designs. Research and usability testing is a part of design innovation, the more you focus on users the more your product sells in the market.
Its All About Usabilit In today’s competitive market, when products have the same technology, price, performance and features; design becomes the differentiator. Every design needs to be tested to see how it fits in the users environment, and it could be anywhere home, outside or work place. Understanding user perspective of any product design is vital to achieve user friendly, accessible, and comfortable designs. Research and usability testing is a part of design innovation, the more you focus on users the more your product sells in the market.

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Usability

Understanding Your Users

User-friendly, visually appealing, easy to navigate, and easy to locate…are our major criteria before we start building your presence online. Our web design capabilities are powered by our team’s extensive knowledge on Human factors, usability, information architecture, etc. This authority on the technical aspects of website building sets us apart from the competition. Precisely, the reason why companies- new or established make HFR&D team their preferred choice.

Understanding Your Users – User-friendly, visually appealing, easy to navigate, and easy to locate…are our major criteria before we start building your presence online. Our web design capabilities are powered by our team’s extensive knowledge on Human factors, usability, information architecture, etc. This authority on the technical aspects of website building sets us apart from the competition. Precisely, the reason why companies- new or established make HFR&D team their preferred choice.
User-friendly, visually appealing, easy to navigate, and easy to locate…are our major criteria before we start building your presence online. Our web design capabilities are powered by our team’s extensive knowledge on Human factors, usability, information architecture, etc. This authority on the technical aspects of website building sets us apart from the competition. Precisely, the reason why companies- new or established make HFR&D team their preferred choice.
ser-friendly, visually appealing, easy to navigate, and easy to locate…are our major criteria before we start building your presence online. Our web design capabilities are powered by our team’s extensive knowledge on Human factors, usability, information architecture, etc. This authority on the technical aspects of website building sets us apart from the competition. Precisely, the reason why companies- new or established make HFR&D team their preferred choice.

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