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- "Anybody Can Do Usability"
Usability is like cooking: everybody needs the results, anybody can do it reasonably well with a bit of training, and yet it takes a master to produce a gourmet outcome [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-12-21)
- "Introducing Google Browser Size"
When I started work at Google, I visited the Google Earth team, hoping to find a 20% project on my favorite Google product. There I met Bruno Bowden, who introduced me to a problem I had never thought much about: how to take browser sizes into account when designing a page [...]
Arthur Blume, Google Code Blog (2009-12-16)
- "Three Perils with Search Landing Pages"
It had been going so well. The shopper, a grandmother looking for a holiday gift for her two grandsons, had decided to buy a Wii video game the boys really wanted: The Beatles: Rock Band. In Google's search box, she typed "wii beatles rock band", following the instructions the boys' dad had given her, which produced many promising results [...]
Jared M. Spool, UIE (2009-12-15)
- "Web Forms for People"
As the Web has grown, so has the number of ways people use it. Today, it's not uncommon for Web users to shop, chat with friends or strangers, manage their bank accounts and exercise routines, share photos or videos, and more. In fact, if it can be done online, it probably already is [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Mix Online (2009-12-14)
- "Short-Term Memory and Web Usability"
The human brain is not optimized for the abstract thinking and data memorization that websites often demand. Many usability guidelines are dictated by cognitive limitations [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-12-07)
- "Nocives, les pop-ups doivent se faire plus discrètes"
Les alertes visuelles sur l'écran empêcheraient les utilisateurs d'ordinateurs de travailler de façon efficace. Les réponses à ce fléau se trouvent aussi bien chez les alerteurs que chez les alertés [...]
- "Opquast V2 : point à date"
Voici quelques informations sur le travail en cours sur la deuxième version des bonnes pratiques Opquast. Le travail sur les bonnes pratiques a commencé il y a un mois. 36 contributeurs ont laissé plus de 2500 commentaires [...]
Élie Sloïm, Blog Temesis (2009-12-02)
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- "Velocity of Media Consumption: TV vs. the Web"
The granularity of user decisions is much finer on the Web, which is dominated by the instant gratification of the user's needs in any given instant. Content must cater to this rapid pace [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-11-24)
- "On Web Typography"
There are many books and articles on typography, but considerably few explore typeface selection and pairing. With the floodgates poised to open and the promise of many typefaces being freed up for use on websites, choosing the right face to complement a website's design will need to become another notch in the designer's belt. But where do we start? [...]
Jason Santa Maria, ALA (2009-11-17)
- "Real Web Type in Real Web Context"
Now that browsers support real fonts in web pages and we can license complete typefaces for such use, let's move past the hype of web type and think pragmatically about how to use real fonts in our web projects [...]
Tim Brown, ALA (2009-11-17)
- "First, Do No Harm"
In my column, On Good Behavior, I'll explore the essentials of good interaction design. This first column provides a brief introduction to interaction design-defining the scope this column will cover-then explores some key design principles. What is interaction design? [...]
Pabini Gabriel-Petit, UXmatters (2009-11-16)
- "Le référentiel général d'interopérabilité (RGI) validé"
Après le référentiel général d'accessibilité pour les administrations (RGAA), le référentiel général d'interopérabilité (RGI, version 1.0, publiée en juin dernier) vient lui aussi d'être validé par un arrêté en date du 9 novembre [...]
Le blog TIC des Maires de Grandes Villes (2009-11-13)
- "J-2 pour la Journée Mondiale de l'Utilisabilité à Paris"
Plus que 2 jours avant la cinquième édition de la Journée Mondiale de l'Utilisabilité à Paris (le jeudi 12 novembre de 9 H à 12 H). Cette année nous avons opté pour un format "matinée" avec comme thématique centrale le commerce en ligne : Journée Mondiale de l'Utilisabilité 2009 - Ergonomie et e-commerce [...]
Frédéric Cavazza, SimpleWeb.fr (2009-11-10)
- "Email Entry in Web Forms"
Many online transactions (such as registration or checkout) rely on email communication to verify user identity and intent or to establish ongoing customer dialog. So it's no wonder companies and organizations care a lot about valid email addresses in Web forms. Get the wrong email address and potential customers can't be confirmed or contacted [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-11-09)
- "Use compression to make the web faster"
Every day, more than 99 human years are wasted because of uncompressed content. Although support for compression is a standard feature of all modern browsers, there are still many cases in which users of these browsers do not receive compressed content. This wastes bandwidth and slows down users' interactions with web pages [...]
Google Code Blog (2009-11-09)
- "Agile User Experience Projects"
Agile projects aren't yet fully user-driven, but new research shows that developers are actually more bullish on key user experience issues than UX people themselves [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-11-04)
- "Mobile First"
More often than not, the mobile experience for a Web application or site is designed and built after the PPC version is complete. Here's three reasons why Web applications should be designed for mobile first instead [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-11-03)
- "The Importance of Site Performance"
In a 2006 study on site abandonment (.pdf) conducted by Jupiter Research on behalf of Akamai, 28% of online shoppers claimed they would not wait longer than 4 seconds for a page to load before leaving a site [...]
Linda Bustos, GetElastic (2009-11-02)
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- "La typographie pour le Web"
On n'invente pas une typographie : on la recherche, on la réfléchit, on la pense. Je partage avec vous sur ce blog une conférence vraiment très intéressante sur la typographie pour le Web donnée par Inès Secondat de Montesquieu, éditrice au centre pour l'édition électronique ouverte [...]
Sébastien Delorme, Tentatives accessibles (2009-10-24)
- "Réduire la fracture numérique entre génération est une question de design"
Ce n'est pas qu'un problème de formation qui éloigne les seniors des mobiles et services web. C'est parfois tout simplement une barrière physique : ces solutions ne sont pas encore adaptées à ces consommateurs [...]
- "The Myth of Usability Testing"
In 1998, usability expert Rolf Molich (co-inventor with Jakob Nielsen of the heuristic evaluation method) gave nine teams three weeks to evaluate the webmail application www.hotmail.com. The experiment was part of his series of Comparative Usability Evaluations (CUEs), through which he began to identify a set of standards and best practices for usability tests. In each segment of the series, Molich asked several usability teams to evaluate a single design using the method of their choice [...]
Robert Hoekman Jr., ALA (2009-10-20)
- "Les interfaces tactiles sont-elles adaptées aux ordinateurs ?"
Alors qu'elles prouvent chaque jour un peu plus leur utilité dans le monde de la mobilité, les interfaces tactiles peinent à montrer leur intérêt pour l'informatique traditionnelle. Comme l'explique Michael Arrington de Techcrunch [...]
Hubert Guillaud, InternetActu (2009-10-14)
- "Streams, Walls, and Feeds: Distributing Content Through Social Networks and RSS"
Users like the simplicity of messages that pass into oblivion over time, but were frequently frustrated by unscannable writing, overly frequent postings, and their inability to locate companies on social networks [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-10-12)
- "15 Common Mistakes in E-Commerce Design"
Selling online can open up huge new markets for many businesses. When your store can be open 24/7 and you can reach a global market without the costs of mailings and call centers, it can be a huge boon to your business. But there are plenty of things to consider when designing an ecommerce site. It's not as simple as throwing up some shopping cart software and plopping products into a database [...]
Cameron Chapman, Smashing Magazine (2009-10-08)
- "Minimizing Complexity In User Interfaces"
Clean. Easy to use. User-friendly. Intuitive. This mantra is proclaimed by many but often gets lost in translation. The culprit: complexity. How one deals with complexity can make or break an application. A complex interface can disorient the user in a mild case and completely alienate them in an extreme case. But if you take measures first to reduce actual complexity and then to minimize perceived complexity, the user will be rewarded with a gratifying experience [...]
Tyler Tate, Smashing Magazine (2009-10-07)
- "Case Study: Fewer Input Fields Increases Conversions"
Any question you ask people in a Web form requires them to parse it, formulate a response, and then input their answer in the affordance you have provided on the form. Being vigilant about every question you ask allows you to remove questions that are not absolutely necessary [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-10-07)
- "Usability Testing Demystified"
There seems to be this idea going around that usability testing is bad, or that the cool kids don't do it. That it's old skool. That designers don't need to do it. What if I told you that usability testing is the hottest thing in experience design research? Every time a person has a great experience with a website, a web app, a gadget, or a service, it's because a design team made excellent decisions about both design and implementation-decisions based on data about how people use designs. And how can you get that data? Usability testing [...]
Dana Chisnell, ALA (2009-10-06)
- "SpoolCast: Information Architecture Essentials"
Donna Spencer is our long-time, go-to expert on the topic of Information Architecture. We're happy to bring her stateside again for the upcoming User Interface 14 conference. Recently, I spoke with her, all the way from Australia, in advance of her trip to Boston [...]
Jared Spool, UIE (2009-10-06)
- "Powers of 10: Time Scales in User Experience"
From 0.1 seconds to 10 years or more, user interface design has many different timeframes, and each has its own particular usability issues [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-10-05)
- "Usability testing HTML5"
Over the past few weeks, Google has been preparing and then running a usability study to test the microdata feature of HTML5 [...]
Ian Hickson, The WHATWG Blog (2009-10-04)
- "Web, lâcher prise et libération"
Obsédés que nous sommes par la qualité et l'accessibilité Web, nous oublions quelquefois de prendre le recul nécessaire pour analyser ce qui se passe vraiment. Je parle d'une vision à dix ou 15 ans [...]
Élie Sloïm, Blog Temesis (2009-10-02)
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- "Breaking Up Large Documents for the Web - Part 3"
PDF - Yes or No? You probably already know this, but just in case. PDF stands for portable document format. PDF was invented by Adobe Systems, Inc. (www.adobe.com), as a way to publish documents that anyone can read, regardless of whether they are working in the same operating system or using the same software that the document's creator worked in [...]
Janice (Ginny) Redish, UIE (2009-09-29)
- "Breaking Up Large Documents for the Web - Part 2"
Deciding How Much To Put on One Web Page. We've been looking at how to break your web content into pieces - by time or sequence, by task, by people, by type of information, and by the different questions that people ask. Once you have the pieces, you have to decide how many topics, articles, questions, or pieces of information to put together on one web page [...]
Janice (Ginny) Redish, UIE (2009-09-24)
- "10 Useful Usability Findings and Guidelines"
Everyone would agree that usability is an important aspect of Web design. Whether you're working on a portfolio website, online store or Web app, making your pages easy and enjoyable for your visitors to use is key. Many studies have been done over the years on various aspects of Web and interface design, and the findings are valuable in helping us improve our work. Here are 10 useful usability findings and guidelines that may help you improve the user experience on your websites [...]
Dmitry Fadeyev, Smashing Magazine (2009-09-24)
- "Breaking Up Large Documents for the Web - Part 1"
Most people come to the web for information, not for a complete document. They don't want the user manual; they want instructions for the task they are doing. They don't want the handbook; they want the answer to specific questions. They want usable, manageable pieces [...]
Janice (Ginny) Redish, UIE (2009-09-22)
- "Fresh vs. Familiar: How Aggressively to Redesign"
Users hate change, so it's usually best to stay with a familiar design and evolve it gradually. In the long run, however, incrementalism eventually destroys cohesiveness, calling for a new UI architecture [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-09-21)
- "Enhancing User Interaction With First Person User Interface"
Though many computer applications and operating systems make use of real-world metaphors like the desktop, most software interface design has little to do with how we actually experience the real world. In lots of cases, there are great reasons not to directly mimic reality. Not doing so allows us to create interfaces that enable people to be more productive, communicate in new ways, or manage an increasing amount of information. In other words, to do things we can't otherwise do in real life [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Smashing Magazine (2009-09-21)
- "Discount Usability: 20 Years"
Simple user testing with 5 participants, paper prototyping, and heuristic evaluation offer a cheap, fast, and early focus on usability, as well as many rounds of iterative design [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-09-14)
- "How I Draft an Information Architecture"
When I teach information architecture, the most common questions aren't about the principles, but about the process. Just how do you decide on a particular method, how do you choose categories, how do you know what you've come up with is right? [...]
Donna Spencer, UIE (2009-09-10)
- "HTML 5 + CSS 3 = une révolution pour les interfaces web"
Voilà 20 ans que le web existe et presque 10 ans que le HTML n'a pas évolué et propose toujours la même structure et les mêmes balises. 10 ans c'est beaucoup, c'est la moitié de la "vie" du web. 10 ans c'est beaucoup, surtout lorsque l'on constate les révolutions qui ont eu lieu dans les usages du web ces 5 dernières années [...]
Fred Cavazza, FredCavazza.net (2009-09-10)
- "Horizontal Navigation Menus: Trends, Patterns, and Best Practices"
The horizontal navigation menu has become a mainstay in Web design. It is safe to say that nowadays most websites use some form of horizontal navigation to facilitate content browsing. The dominance of horizontal navigation over vertical (i.e.. down a sidebar) is obviously due to the design and content limitations of the latter [...]
Louis Lazaris, Smashing Magazine (2009-09-07)
- "Best Practices for Designing Faceted Search Filters"
Recently, Office Depot redesigned their search user interface, adding attribute-based filtering and creating a more dynamic, interactive user experience [...]
Greg Nudelman, UXmatters (2009-09-07)
- "HTML 5: The Markup Language", Editor's Draft 3 September 2009
This specification describes the fifth major version of the HTML language and provides details necessary for producers of HTML content to create documents that conform to the language. By design, it does not define related APIs nor attempt to specify how consumers of HTML content are meant to process documents [...]
- "8 façons simples d'améliorer la typographie dans vos designs"
Beaucoup de gens, y compris les designers, pensent que la typographie consiste à choisir une police, sa taille et si elle doit être grasse ou pas. Pour la plupart des gens, ça s'arrête là. Obtenir une bonne typographie demande tellement plus, notamment de s'attarder sur les détails que les designers négligent souvent [...]
Antonio Carusone (traduction Marie Alhomme), Pompage.net (2009-09-01)
- "Inline Validation in Web Forms"
Web forms aren't great conversationalists. They ask a bunch of questions, then wait until you answer them all before they respond. So when you register for that cool social network or use an e-commerce site, it's pretty much a monologue [...]
Luke Wroblewski, ALA (2009-09-01)
- "Get Ready for HTML 5"
With support in Chrome, Firefox 3.5, Opera, and Safari, HTML 5 is coming at you like a runaway train. Here are some suggestions to help you prepare to get on board rather than be left at the platform or tied to the tracks [...]
J. David Eisenberg, ALA (2009-09-01)
- "(Almost) never add a reset button to a form"
There was a time when many, many, forms on the web had a reset button. Thankfully, reset buttons are not quite as common these days, but there are enough of them out there to cause users lots of frustration [...]
Roger Johansson, 456 Berea Street (2009-09-01)
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- "Loving HTML5"
Half of standards making is minutia; the other half is politics. Rightly or wrongly, I've long suspected that Atom was born, not of necessity, but because of conflicts between the XML crowd and the founders of RSS. Likewise, rightly or wrongly, I reckoned HTML5 was at least partly Hixie's revenge against XHTML served as text/html [...]
Jeffrey Zeldman (2009-08-31)
- "Information Interplay: Visual Design, Information Architecture, and Content"
The error message stated, "Searched for Return Policy. No Results Found." The shopper stared at the message. "Now what?" she asked. It took us a while to get to this point. We started by looking at a credit card wallet. She liked the outside design - an adorable scene from a popular animated movie [...]
Jared M. Spool, UIE (2009-08-27)
- "Make more web content readable with Readability"
Ever find yourself reluctant to read stuff you really would like to read if it wasn't on a site whose visual design is not compatible with your eyes? I do [...]
Roger Johansson, 456 Berea Street (2009-08-25)
- "Should There Be a Unified Set of Styles For Web Interfaces?"
If we look at interfaces in operating systems, we'll see that there is usually a set of unified interface elements that's shared not only by the operating system's own tools, but also by third party programs running on that operating system. [...]
Dmitry, Usability Post (2009-08-24)
- "SpoolCast: The Web as a Conversation"
Guest Ginny Redish speaks about writing on the web. One of my favorite people to speak with about the state of content on the web is Ginny Redish. She's one of those people who cuts to the point so decisively that you're left asking yourself... "why didn't I think of that?" [...]
Jared M. Spool, UIE (2009-08-21)
- "Typographic Design Patterns and Best Practices"
Even with a relatively limited set of options in CSS, typography can vary tremendously using pure CSS syntax. Serif or sans-serif? Large or small font? Line height, spacing, font size and padding... The list goes on and on [...]
Michael Martin, Smashing Magazine (2009-08-20)
- "Les chiffres du handicap en France"
Les chiffres concernant le handicap en France varient selon la définition donnée à ce terme et la source des données.Les chiffres les plus couramment utilisés - et certainement les plus significatifs au regard de la problématique de l'accessibilité - sont ceux issus de l'enquête Handicap, incapacités, dépendance (HID) réalisée par l'Insee, entre 1998 et 2001 [...]
Patrice Bourlon, WA (2009-08-17)
- "Customization of UIs and Products"
Websites that let users customize the UI have the same measured usability as regular sites. Sites for customizing products, however, score substantially worse due to complex workflow [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-08-17)
- "OpenHallway - A New Usability Testing App"
We're starting to see more and more new tools appearing for the purpose of conducting usability testing. A while back I wrote a review of UserFly, a web app that lets you record your visitors actions, from mouse movements to clicks and keyboard strokes, and then play it back as if you're sitting behind the user's screen [...]
Dmitry, Usability Post (2009-08-06)
- "Web Site Navigation Menu Placement"
I was asked in an email recently what my feelings were regarding the placement of a navigation menu on a web site. The person asking wanted to know the latest scoop on the advantages or disadvantages of various menu placements [...]
Mike Cherim, Beast-Blog.com (2009-08-05)
- "Social Networking on Intranets"
Community features are spreading from "Web 2.0" to "Enterprise 2.0." Research across 14 companies found that many are making productive use of social intranet features [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-08-03)
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- "Why Standards Fail"
Back in 2000, CSS co-creator Bert Bos set out to explain the W3C's design principles - "to make explicit what the developers in the various W3C working groups mean when they invoke words like efficiency, maintainability, accessibility, extensibility, learnability, simplicity, [and] longevity..." [...]
Jeffrey Zeldman (2009-07-24)
It's time we came to grips with the fact that not every "document" can be a "web page." Some forms of writing just cannot be expressed in HTML-or they need to be bent and distorted to do so. But for once, XML might actually help [...]
Joe Clark, ALA (2009-07-21)
- "Mobile Apps vs. Web Apps"
Today news sources (like the BBC) are trumpeting the market for mobile applications will become "as big as the Internet." Clearly, we're not going to have as many applications on any specific mobile platform as on the Internet at large. So what's the story here? [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-07-20)
- "Mobile Usability"
In user testing, website use on mobile devices got very low scores, especially when users accessed "full" sites that weren't designed for mobile [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-07-20)
- "Mobile Apps: In the Store or the Browser?"
With recent announcements that Verizon and Symbian are both jumping into the app store fray, the number of mobile application development options for software providers begins to looks unmanageable. Consider the list so far [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-07-17)
- "HTML5 and The Future of the Web"
Some have embraced it, some have discarded it as too far in the future, and some have abandoned a misused friend in favor of an old flame in preparation. Whatever side of the debate you're on, you've most likely heard all the blogging chatter surrounding the "new hotness" that is HTML5. It's everywhere, it's coming, and you want to know everything you can before it's old news [...]
Tim Wright, Smashing Magazine (2009-07-16)
- Quelle interface pour le système d'exploitation de demain ?
Avec la sortie prochaine de Chrome OS (le futur système d'exploitation de Google pour les netbooks) le débat est relancé sur l'évolution des interfaces des systèmes d'exploitation. Ou plutôt devrais-je dire sur la non-évolution des interfaces [...]
Frédéric Cavazza, SimpleWeb.fr (2009-07-14)
- "Objets bavards, de Bruce Sterling : l'avenir par l'objet ?"
Ecrit en 2005 et publié aux éditions du MIT, Shaping Things, l'essai de Bruce Sterling, est enfin disponible en Français sous le titre Objets bavards (chez Fyp Editions). Nous en publions ci-dessous la préface, écrite par Daniel Kaplan. Et nous vous invitons plus encore à lire ce livre fondateur sur l'avenir des objets, de la technologie et même, pourquoi pas, de notre planète [...]
Daniel Kaplan, InternetActu (2009-07-10)
- "HTML5 se dévoile"
Comme vous avez dû le lire, le brouillon officiel (working draft) de HTML5 a été publié officiellement le 23 avril 2009. Puisque les travaux sur XHTML 2 se termineront cette année 2009, profitons de cette occasion pour faire un tour d'horizon de cette nouvelle version de HTML [...]
julixyde, Alsacréations (2009-07-10)
- "Paris-Web 2009"
Accessibilité, qualité et design : comment concilier ces trois approches dans une optique de production de sites web, avec les contraintes et les exigences liées à des processus "industriels" ? L'association Paris-Web organise chaque année une grande manifestation sur ces sujets pour éclairer les professionnels [...]
Paris Web (2009-07-07)
- "La qualité s'impose sur le web"
En l'espace d'une quinzaine d'années, la production de services en ligne est passée du stade artisanal au stade industriel. Très vite, les outils se sont affûtés, les métiers se sont spécialisés, les besoins se sont révélés. Aujourd'hui, une approche qualité, fondée notamment sur la transversalité des compétences, la standardisation des outils et l'accessibilité des contenus, représente un enjeu majeur [...]
Elie Sloïm et Laurent Denis, OpenWeb Group (2009-07-07)
- "Building Respect for Usability Expertise"
Enemies of usability claim that because "the experts disagree," they can safely ignore user advocates' expertise and run with whatever design they personally prefer [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-07-06)
- "The Spectrum of User Experience (1)"
As we all perfectly know, designers are narcissists; programmers are nerds, and whoever wears a tie must be a clueless jerk. Designers, programmers and business people love to hate each other [...]
Information Architects (2009-07-06)
- "XHTML est mort, vive HTML !"
Sous ce titre quelque peu provocateur (et faux) se cache une réalité officielle depuis hier soir : le W3C vient d'annoncer que ses travaux sur XHTML 2 se termineront cette année 2009. En contrepartie, ses efforts vont s'orienter vers le développement de HTML 5, dont le groupe de travail est pour le moins dynamique [...]
Raphaël, Alsacréations (2009-07-03)
- "XHTML 2 Working Group Expected to Stop Work End of 2009, W3C to Increase Resources on HTML 5"
Today the Director announces that when the XHTML 2 Working Group charter expires as scheduled at the end of 2009, the charter will not be renewed. By doing so, and by increasing resources in the Working Group, W3C hopes to accelerate the progress of HTML 5 and clarify W3C's position regarding the future of HTML. A FAQ answers questions about the future of deliverables of the XHTML 2 Working Group, and the status of various discussions related to HTML. Learn more about the HTML Activity [...]
- "Best Practices For Effective Design Of 'About me-Pages'
The "about me"-page is one of the most overlooked pages in development and one of the highest ranked pages on many websites. In a world that's becoming increasingly connected through the Web, it's important that you engage your audience in a personal and friendly way, otherwise you risk just being another faceless web designer among a sea of websites [...]
Mark Nutter, Smashing Magazine (2009-07-01)
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- "Is usability worth more than security?"
As you enter your password into a form online or a dialog box in an application, more often than not you see asterisks instead of a clear text password entry. This basic level of security design is a feature everyone has gotten used to using. Be that as it may, one expert on usability thinks it's time to let go of the past and move to presenting passwords in clear text for the sake of making things easier for users [...]
Steve Ragan, The Tech Herald (2009-06-29)
- "Terrible Password Security Advice From Jakob Nielsen"
Jakob Nielsen today wrote an article calling for all log-in forms to display passwords in plaintext, rather than masking them with bullets or stars. He argues that this increases usability (users feel more confident because they can see their password as they type it), and also increases security (a more confident user will choose stronger passwords!) [...]
Chris Kite (2009-06-23)
- "Stop Password Masking"
Usability suffers when users type in passwords and the only feedback they get is a row of bullets. Typically, masking passwords doesn't even increase security, but it does cost you business due to login failures [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-06-23)
- "The Impact of Aesthetics on Attitudes Towards Websites"
A user's perception of a Web site can evoke a wide range of emotions and attitudes. These emotions and perceptions impact the user's attitude towards the Web site's content, advertised products, company, credibility and site usability [...]
Jennifer Chen, Usability.gov (2009-06-15)
- "Guesses vs. Data as Basis for Design Recommendations"
Even the tiniest amount of empirical facts (say, observing 2 users) vastly improves the probability of making correct UI design decisions [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-06-08)
- "L'eye tracking fait des lunettes des manettes de navigation"
Le Fraunhofer intègre un outil de suivi du mouvement des yeux à des lunettes de réalité virtuelle. Le but est de permettre à l'oeil de contrôler un écran à distance [...]
- "Fixed vs. Fluid vs. Elastic Layout: What's The Right One For You?"
The problem has boggled the minds of Web designers for years: fixed, fluid, elastic or a hybrid layout design? Each option has its benefits and disadvantages. But the final decision depends so much on usability that it is not one to be made lightly. So, with all the confusion, is there a right decision? By considering a few factors and properly setting up the final design, you can end up with a successful layout design that reaps all the benefits [...]
Kayla Knight, Smashing Magazine (2009-06-02)
- "Mobile Commerce Usability: Forms and Checkout"
This is the final installment of a 4 part series on mobile commerce design and usability. Part 1: Home Pages and Navigation. Part 2: Search and Category Pages. Part 3: Product Pages and Cart Summary. Part 4: Forms and Checkout [...]
Linda Bustos, Get Elastic (2009-06-01)
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- "Mobile Commerce Usability: Product Pages and Cart Summary"
This is the third installment of a 4 part series on mobile commerce design and usability. Part 1: Home Pages and Navigation. Part 2: Search and Category Pages. Part 3: Product Pages and Cart Summary. Part 4: Forms and Checkout [...]
Linda Bustos, Get Elastic (2009-05-29)
- "Mobile Commerce Usability: Search and Category Pages"
This is the second installment of a 4 part series on mobile commerce design and usability. Part 1: Home Pages and Navigation. Part 2: Search and Category Pages. Part 3: Product Pages and Cart Summary. Part 4: Forms and Checkout [...]
Linda Bustos, Get Elastic (2009-05-27)
- "Vers une structure générique pour les sites corporate ?"
Aviez-vous déjà remarqué que les sites corporate des grands groupes US se ressemblent tous ? Nous savions déjà que le public américain est très friand de mises en page sobres (fond blanc, grille de lecture symétrique, typo unifiée...) mais de là à adopter une structure quasi identique... Jugez plutôt [...]
Frédéric Cavazza, SimpleWeb.fr (2009-05-26)
- "Investor Relations (IR) on Corporate Websites"
Individual investors are intimidated by overly complex IR sites and need simple summaries of financial data. Both individual and professional investors want the company's own story and investment vision [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-05-26)
- "Mobile Commerce Usability: Home Pages and Navigation"
While most retailers have enough challenge optimizing for the Web, along comes the mobile Web with its own demands, usability challenges and opportunity. Websites designed specifically for mobile devices are not new, but are few and far between when it comes to online retail. And if serving customers wherever they are is important to your e-biz strategy, you can't rely on smartphones to translate your Web store into a Mini-Me mobile version and expect it to be usable. The difference between optimized and non-optimized sites is night and day [...]
Linda Bustos, Get Elastic (2009-05-25)
- "Top 10 Information Architecture Mistakes"
Structure and navigation must support each other and integrate with search and across subsites. Complexity, inconsistency, hidden options, and clumsy UI mechanics prevent users from finding what they need [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-05-11)
- "An Event Apart: Revealing Design Treasures from The Amazon"
Jared Spool's Revealing Design Treasures from The Amazon presentation at An Event Apart in Seattle highlighted some great design lessons from Amazon's Web site [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-05-06)
- "An Event Apart: Content First"
Kristina Halvorson's Content First talk at An Event Apart in Seattle prescribed ways and reasons not to leave content creation to the last step of a Web site design project [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-05-06)
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- "Web Usability: Are Men Hunters & Women Browsers?"
Andy King, author of Website Optimization: Speed, Search Engine & Conversion Rate Secrets posted Usability Study: Men Need Speed yesterday - citing a study by Southern Illinois University on how men and women use the web. The researchers found that both men's and women's top priority is ease of use, with web speed men's second choice, and easy navigation women's [...]
Linda Bustos, Get Elastic (2009-04-29)
- "Usability Study: Men Need Speed"
Summary: In a recent usability survey, researchers from Southern Illinois University found that after ease of use, men prefer fast download speed to easy navigation. Women prefer ease of use, easy navigation, and accessibility. The researchers hypothesize that these different usability criteria are due to differences in how men and women use the Web. [...]
Andrew King, Website Optimization (2009-04-28)
- "World's Best Headlines: BBC News"
Summary: Precise communication in a handful of words? The editors at BBC News achieve it every day, offering remarkable headline usability [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-0427)
- "HTML 5, Differences from HTML 4 Drafts Published"
The HTML Working Group has published a Working Draft of HTML 5. HTML 5 adds to the language of the Web: features to help Web application authors, new elements based on research into prevailing authoring practices, and clear conformance criteria for user agents in an effort to improve interoperability [...]
- "Google : les AdWords passés au crible de la méthode Eye Tracking"
Selon une étude du cabinet Miratech, les liens commerciaux ne sont pas les plus efficaces pour attirer l'attention des utilisateurs sur une page de résultats de recherche. Elle confirme que la visibilité des liens organiques, produits d' un référencement naturel, est plus forte que celle de la publicité [...]
Philippe Leroy, Zdnet France (2009-04-23)
- "Audio: The Value of Web Forms and Design Constraints"
I recently had the pleasure of talking with Craig Shoemaker, of the Polymorphic Podcast, about The Value of Web Forms and Design Constraints. In particular, how adding constraints helps shape the design process and why Web form design matters [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-04-18)
- "Demain, les interfaces organiques"
Parmi les nombreuses présentations qui se sont tenues à la conférence Computer Human Interaction à Boston, l'un des ateliers, qui rassemblait tous les gourous de la spécialité, s'intéressait aux interfaces organiques, c'est-à-dire aux interfaces capables de modifier et d'adapter leurs formes, rapporte Core77. Les interfaces organiques désignent des interfaces flexibles, gonflables ou lumineuses [...]
Hubert Guillaud, InternetActu (2009-04-22)
- "Comment faire entrer la communication non verbale dans nos ordinateurs ?"
Comme le disait Alex Pentland, à mesure que nos outils technologiques nous permettent d'étudier et comprendre la communication distante, les chercheurs se rendent compte combien la communication non verbale est capitale dans nos échanges. Judith Olson, de l'Ecole d'information de l'université du Michigan, qui a ouvert la conférence CHI 2009, ne dit pas autre chose quand elle remarque que la conception d'interfaces peut favoriser ou pas l'interaction [...]
Hubert Guillaud, InternetActu (2009-04-22)
- "IA Task Failures Remain Costly"
Task success is up substantially compared with usability statistics from 2004. Bad information architecture causes most of the remaining user failures [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-04-16)
"8 Characteristics Of Successful User Interfaces"
There is a lot of information out there about various interface design techniques and patterns you can use when crafting your user interfaces and websites, solutions to common problems and general usability recommendations. Following guidelines from experts will likely lead you towards creating a good user interface - but what exactly is a good interface? What are the characteristics of an effective user interface? [...]
Dmitry, Usability Post (2009-04-15)
"Entre les tables numériques et le papier, quel est le meilleur support pour l'apprentissage ?"
James D. Hollan, professeur de sciences cognitives et d'informatique à l'université de Californie et sa collègue Anne Marie Piper du Laboratoire de cognition distribuée et d'interaction homme-machine ont étudié (.pdf), à l'occasion de la dernière conférence Computer Human Interaction, les interfaces multitouch et multiutilisateur, ces tables numériques où se projette l'information qu'on peut modifier du bout des doigts, à la manière dont le propose le logiciel Surface de Microsoft [...]
Hubert Guillaud, InternetActu (2009-04-15)
- "Searching Help: Don't Even Go There"
Web site user assistance that consistently exceeds customer's expectations can catapult your company to legendary status and create brand equity you can measure in billions of dollars. However, making Help a strategic asset for your company is an arduous task [...]
Greg Nudelman and Tricia Clement, UXmatters (2009-04-13)
- "Toward Content Quality"
How do we know whether content is any good? This simple question does not have a simple answer. Yet, I think having a good answer would help us show our employers and clients why their content needs to improve and how their content compares to the competition's [...]
Colleen Jones, UXmatters (2009-04-13)
- "Differentiating Your Design: A Visual Approach to Competitive Reviews"
A common activity at the outset of many design projects is a competitive review. As a designer, when you encounter a design problem, it's a natural instinct to try to understand what others are doing to solve the same or similar problems [...]
Michael Hawley, UXmatters (2009-04-13)
- "First 2 Words: A Signal for the Scanning Eye"
Testing how well people understand a link's first 11 characters shows whether sites write for users, who typically scan rather than read lists of items [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-04-06)
- "Good Design"
Art vs. Design, Form and Function. Good design can seem subjective. Most design award contests are expert-judged, and the judging criteria are seldom formally defined or revealed. This may afford judges lots of latitude in their scoring, but there is a cost to the rest of us [...]
Michael Cummings, UX Design (2009-04-05)
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- "Donation Usability: Increasing Online Giving to Non-Profits and Charities"
User research finds significant deficiencies in non-profit organizations' website content, which often fails to provide the info people need to make donation decisions [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-03-30)
- "Que faut-il améliorer dans les commentaires des blogs ?"
Voilà de nombreuses années que les blogs existent, et pourtant ils n'ont que très peu évolués dans leur structure (billets, catégories, tags) et dans leur fonctionnement (flux RSS, commentaires). Mais s'il y a bien une fonctionnalité qui fait défaut, ce sont les commentaires [...]
Frédéric Cavazza, SimpleWeb.fr (2009-03-31)
- "The Elegance of Imperfection"
Everything I know about the elegance of imperfection, I learned from the white porcelain plate I bought in Kyoto. What's so special about this plate? Before it was fired, it was perfectly round, but the artist intentionally roughed up the edges. It's elegant, enhanced by anything that touches its surface [...]
David Sherwin, ALA (2009-03-24)
- "Appliquer la charte ergonomique pour une meilleure qualité de l'accueil en ligne"
[la page ne semble plus disponible sur le site de la DGME]
Le processus de mise en œuvre de la charte ergonomique des sites Internet publics est désormais amorcé. Mesure RGPP annoncée par le gouvernement en décembre 2007, la charte ergonomique, dont le suivi du déploiement a été confiée à la DGME, fait l'objet d'un dispositif de pilotage ambitieux qui engage les ministères à auto-évaluer leur site grâce à un guide auto-évaluation dédié et disponible sur le site references.modernisation.gouv.fr. En 2009, l'objectif sera pour chaque site Internet public de respecter au moins 80% des règles de niveau "recommandé" [...]
- "Mega Drop-Down Navigation Menus Work Well"
Big, two-dimensional drop-down panels group navigation options to eliminate scrolling and use typography, icons, and tooltips to explain the user's choices [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-03-23)
- "Testing mobile browsers - more problems"
Since my previous post about mobile browser testing I've had four days in Düsseldorf to play with mobile phones, and I've once again unearthed quite a few problems that mobile browser testers will encounter. So this post is mostly about how the situation is even more complicated than we thought [...]
- "Kindle Content Design"
Writing for Kindle is like writing for print, the Web, and mobile devices combined; optimal usability means optimizing content for each platform's special characteristics [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-03-16)
- "Testing mobile browser compatibility - the beginning"
About a month ago the software department of Vodafone Internet Services, based in Düsseldorf, Germany, asked for my help in creating mobile widgets according to the W3C Widgets specification. In particular, they'd noticed there are differences between browsers even on mobile phones (imagine my surprise), and decided they needed advice from a specialist (that would be me) [...]
- "Redesigning Craigslist With Focus On Usability"
Craigslist is obviously one of the most popular websites in the world, and each month it serves millions of users who post and view classified ads on the website. At the time this article was written, Craigslist was ranked as the 28th most-visited English-language website in the world by Alexa. Despite the fact that Craigslist receives such a huge amount of traffic each month, it is also criticized for its design, which seems to be at least 10 years out-of-date [...]
Steven Snell, Smashing Magazine (2009-03-11)
- "Choosing the Right Search Results Page Layout: Make the Most of Your Width"
Page layout forms the foundation in presenting search results. Your layout decisions for search results pages will have tremendous impact on the user experience for your entire site. Choosing the right width for search results is important, and the optimal width for search results may be a great deal narrower than some people using big monitors would believe [...]
Greg Nudelman, UXmatters (2009-03-09)
- "Kindle 2 Usability Review"
Amazon's new e-book reader offers print-level readability and shines for reading fiction, but it has awkward interaction design and poor support for non-linear content [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-03-09)
- "Luke Wroblewski on Best Practices for Content Page Design"
As the web becomes increasingly social, distributed, and search driven, the paths that users take to find content grow ever more varied, and that, according to Luke Wroblewski, has important implications for web page design and usability [...]
Patrick Lufkin, STC UUX Newsletter (2009-03-09)
- "Write for Reuse"
Users often see online content out of context and read it with different goals than you envisioned. While you can't predict all such goals, you can plan for multiple uses of your text [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-03-02)
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- "Reviewing User Interfaces"
Has your boss or a client ever asked you to review a user interface for a Web or desktop application? Perhaps the request went something like this: Can you just look over these new screens for us? Oh, and can you check the error messages, too? It won't take long! And, by the way, we ship next month [...]
Rhonda Bracey, UXmatters (2009-02-23)
- "Ergonomie : les cybermarchands français peuvent faire mieux"
Soixante-dix-huit pour cent des internautes français éprouveraient des difficultés lors de leurs achats en ligne sur des sites d'articles high-tech, selon l'étude que vient de publier l'Observatoire e-Performance [...]
- "The rise of Zooming User Interfaces"
The first time I ever read anything about Zooming User Interfaces was when I was reading The Humane Interface by Jef Raskin, where he introduced the concept of Zoom World, a whole OS based on a Zooming User Interface (ZUI). Of course this wasn't my first encounter with this type of user interface since I've, among other things, been using Interactive maps like Google Maps. But it was the first time that I started considering a Zooming Interface a viable alternative to the traditional interaction idioms [...]
Gabriel Svennerberg, In usability we trust (2009-02-19)
- "Refonte graphique et ergonomique de service-public.fr"
La configuration graphique et ergonomique est validée. Vous pouvez consulter les maquettes suivantes : Page d'accueil, Annuaire de l'administration, Rubrique Comment faire si [...]
- "Mobile Web 2009 = Desktop Web 1998"
Mobile phone users struggle mightily to use websites, even on high-end devices. To solve the problems, websites should provide special mobile versions [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-02-17)
- "In Defense of Readers"
The best readers are obstinate. They possess a nearly inexhaustible persistence that drives them to read, regardless of the circumstances they find themselves in. I've seen a reader absorbed in Don Quixote while seated at a noisy bar; I've witnessed the quintessential New York reader walk the streets with a book in hand; of late I've seen many a reader devour books on their iPhone (including one who confessed to reading the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy while scrolling with his thumb) [...]
Mandy Brown, ALA (2009-02-17)
- "Drafts of HTML 5, Differences from HTML 4 Published"
The HTML Working Group has published Working Drafts of HTML 5 and HTML 5 differences from HTML 4. In this version of HTML5, new features are introduced to help Web application authors, new elements are introduced based on research into prevailing authoring practices, and special attention has been given to defining clear conformance criteria for user agents in an effort to improve interoperability. Learn more about the HTML Activity [...]
- "Starting from Zero: Winning Strategies for No Search Results Pages"
Search results pages are some of the most visited pages on typical e-commerce sites-to say nothing of a search engine like Google. Many articles appear each year about optimal search algorithms, database performance, and the like. In contrast, very few publications focus on improving the search experience from the customer's perspective [...]
Greg Nudelman, UXmatters (2009-02-09)
- "Google, fervent partisan de l'eye tracking"
Google exploite cette technique d'analyse des mouvements de l'oeil devant un écran pour optimiser l'ergonomie de son moteur de recherche [...]
Cécile Grégoriades, Vnunet (2009-02-09)
- "Anatomy of an Iteration"
Where did the Office team at Microsoft get their inspiration and ideas for the last version of Microsoft Office? I've been asking this question to different teams of developers every month, for the past 15 years. Every team comes back with the same list of sources, even though, over that period, there have been no less than six new versions of Office and tremendous advances in technology [...]
Jared M. Spool, UIE (2009-02-09)
- "Web Anatomy: Introducing Interaction Design Frameworks"
There are two problems that seem to reappear at the beginning of every web application design project. First, the task of translating a high-level understanding of an application's goals into low-level design details can be a brutal experience. It's usually like trying to turn a vapor cloud into a brick wall with one hand tied behind your back and the other one lacking a magic wand [...]
Robert Hoekman, Miskeeto, UIE (2009-02-02)
- "Macintosh: 25 Years"
Although its individual features weren't new, the Mac offered integration, the expectation of a GUI, and interface consistency [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-02-02)
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- "Visually Communicating Selection Dependent Inputs"
In Web forms, selection-dependent inputs require users to provide additional information related to an initial selection before they can complete (and submit) a form. In my previous Selection-Dependent Inputs article, I outlined a number of ways to address this interface design issue [...]
Luke Wroblewski, Functioning Form (2009-01-31)
- Le web design doit-il s'adapter au raisonnement du consommateur ?
Les internautes ont une approche soit rationnelle soit expérimentale quand ils naviguent sur le web. Reste à savoir si la conception de sites doit refléter simultanément ces deux modes de réflexion [...]
- "VoD : l'interopérabilité selon TF1"
Ce billet d'humeur aurait pu s'intituler "TF1 Vision : parcours du combattant", ou "TF1 Vision/Microsoft, descente aux enfers d'un candide linuxien", et pour développer je vais vous conter les déboires que m'ont valu mon addiction aux séries TV [...]
Don Rico, Framablog (2009-01-27)
- "Beyond Usability: Designing Web Sites for Persuasion, Emotion, and Trust"
The next wave in Web site design is persuasive design, designing for persuasion, emotion, and trust. While usability is still a fundamental requirement for effective Web site design, it is no longer enough [...]
Eric Schaffer, UXmatters (2009-01-26)
- "L'ergonomie Web vue par les internautes"
Ce mois-ci, le pôle Conseil en ergonomie de Benchmark Group a mis en ligne les résultats d'une enquête très intéressante : "Ergonomie des sites Web : le verdict des internautes". Cette enquête a été menée au cours du mois de novembre 2008 auprès des lecteurs du Journal du Net et de L'Internaute Magazine [...]
SimpleWeb.fr, Fred Cavazza (2009-01-21)
- "Press Area Usability"
As 3 studies of journalists show, they use the Web as a major research tool, exhibit high search dominance, and are impatient with bloated sites that don't serve their needs or list a PR contact [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-01-20)
- "Elevate Web Design at the University Level"
Let's face it. Technology moves fast; academia doesn't. So how should educators teach web design and development-subjects that change constantly? How should educators prepare students for real-world expectations? How do educators stay up-to-date? And how do web professionals help educators to create graduates who fit in and actually know what they're doing? [...]
Leslie Jensen-Inman, ALA (2009-01-20)
- "12 Standard Screen Patterns"
As Bill mentioned in an earlier post, we don't want to limit this blog to just the principles and patterns found in the book. For that you can check out our Explore the Book section. In the spirit of that, I want to share an additional set of principles and patterns I have been using for RIA design. While the book takes a much more consumer web site orientation, these concepts are central to enterprise application and web productivity application design and more broad than those discussed in the book [...]
Theresa Neil (2009-01-16)
- "12 Useful Techniques For Good User Interface Design"
Last week, we presented 10 Useful Web Application Interface Techniques, the first part of our review of useful design trends in modern Web applications. Among other things, we highlighted embedded video blocks, specialized controls and context-sensitive navigation. We also encouraged designers to disable pressed buttons, use shadows around modal windows and link to the sign-up page from the log-in page [...]
Dmitry Fadeyev, Smashing Magazine (2009-01-14)
- "The $300 Million Button"
How Changing a Button Increased a Site's Annual Revenues by $300 Million. It's hard to imagine a form that could be simpler: two fields, two buttons, and one link. Yet, it turns out this form was preventing customers from purchasing products from a major e-commerce site, to the tune of $300,000,000 a year. What was even worse: the designers of the site had no clue there was even a problem [...]
Jared M. Spool, UIE (2009-01-14)
- "10 Useful Web Application Interface Techniques"
More and more applications these days are migrating to the Web. Without platform constraints or installation requirements, the software-as-a-service model looks very attractive. Web application interface design is, at its core, Web design; however, its focus is mainly on function. To compete with desktop applications, Web apps must offer simple, intuitive and responsive user interfaces that let their users get things done with less effort and time [...]
Smashing Magazine (2009-01-14)
- "10 Best Intranets of 2009"
Intranets are getting more strategic, with increased collaboration support. Team size is growing by 12% per year, and platforms are becoming integrated, with a strong showing for SharePoint. Improving usability increased use by 106% on average [...]
Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox (2009-01-05)
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