Timeless advice for becoming a player in the field of UX
Read, read, read. Think, think, think. Practice, practice, practice. Start all over.
“My story: I didn’t study UX. User experience wasn’t even close to a common term when I went to school, or college. I’m forty. I studied communication science. Turns out that was actually a pretty good foundation for what I do. Not primarily in the sense of giving me better tools and making me a better UX:er, but in the sense of giving me the terminology to better describe the usefulness of what I do and how it fits into the big picture of organizations.”
Per Axbom a.k.a. /axbom | @axbom ~ axbom ★
Advice from UX heroes: 9 golden nuggets
Always learn from the experienced experiences.
“A little over a year and a half ago, I was a UX intern with no idea what the heck was going on. I had a million questions about the field and desperately wanted answers and advice. I decided to start a podcast to pose these questions to some of my personal UX heroes. For the 18 months I’ve had the privilege of talking with some of the brightest minds in our field. I’ve bombarded them with questions from my perspective as a UX intern, and they’ve shared their wisdom with me. What follows are the pieces of advice that were most repeated on the show and that stood out most to me. I want to share them because they inspire me to become a better designer, and to be better rounded as a person.”
(Wesley Noble a.k.a. @wesley_noble ~ UXPA magazine) ★
How to make a UX designer
Breeding UX design talent might be the way to go for our field.
“In a recent interview, Wydeven took the time to speak with me about her route to UX design, what it was like entering the UX field, what new designers should know, and how more experienced designers can help bring new designers into the fold.”
(Nick Lombardi a.k.a. @NickLombardi482 ~ O’Reilly Radar) ★
Why I teach theory
Without a good theory, all data can be equally usefull.
“As an educator, I’m painfully aware of the challenges of curricular design. Far and away the largest challenge in building a curriculum is fitting the quantity of material into a realistic course structure. It’s a zero-sum game; for each topic I add, I have to remove something. Design, like other professions, is going through a process of increased specialization, and that means there are more skills to learn in order to claim deep expertise. I end up agonizing over every detail, every class.”
(Jon Kolko a.k.a. @jkolko)
Why DesignX? Designers and complex systems
Progressing on the design maturity path for all designers: from wicked problems to complex systems.
“For many years, together with a number of design educators, I have been discussing how design can address the complex socio-technological systems that characterize our world. The issues are not new: many people and disciplines have grappled with them for some time. But how can design play a role? Do our educational methods, especially the emphasis upon craft, prepare designers for this? What can design add?”
(Donald A. Norman ~ Core77)
Service blueprinting: Transforming the student experience
Our current educational system at large requires outside-in thinking. Service design and its deliverables is a little step. A different mindset is needed.
“In this article (…), we explore the transformative power of viewing higher education and the student experience through a service lens and explain and provide an example of how service blueprinting, a simple but powerful service design technique, can be used to transform student experiences in higher education. Throughout, the strategic role of technology in transforming student experiences is emphasized.”
(Mary Jo Bitner, Amy Ostrom, and Kevin Burkhard ~ EDUCAUSE)
State of Design: How design education must change
Schooling versus learning. Formal education of a field becomes significant if the demand for a profession exceeds the supply. But how to find the proper pedagogy, didactics and curriculum? Instructional design revisited.
“Design is the practice of intentional creation to enhance the world. It is a field of doing and making, creating great products and services that fit human needs, that delight and inform. Design is exciting because it calls upon the arts and humanities, the social, physical, and biological sciences, engineering and business.”
(Donald A. Norman)
Advancing the practice of IxD through better education
Formal education and curriculums of design for UX, interaction or information architecture has been a neglected area for years.
“For the inaugural event, we brought together 25 people interested in education to listen to provocations from educators within different contexts and then to workshop around those same provocations. Although the outcomes were not as I had hoped, I do think it was a successful and well-timed event. I didn’t even know that the hosts of the next year’s Interaction conference were already thinking along the same lines and wanted to lead their own initiative. So we coupled our talents together to help prepare this year’s event with lessons learned from the previous year and we have prepared an amazing single-day event for people interested in the intersection of education and interaction design around the world.”
(Dave Malouf a.k.a. @daveixd ~ Core77)
Information architecture: More than just a pretty menu
Sounds like attractive navigation only. Anyone can do it.
“The good news is there’s no magic involved. Anyone who can focus on both the big picture and detailed elements simultaneously has the potential to be good at IA. (…) In other words, it’s now easier than ever to do it yourself when it comes to creating or updating your site’s IA.”
(Chris Nodder ~ Lynda.com)
Architects of Learning
Learning, understanding and cognition. Architecture, structure and node relationships.
“Technology won’t save the day, and teachers can’t cross the chasm alone. Designers, developers, publishers, and librarians are just a few of the folks needed to build these cross-platform services and structures for learners. And those of us outside the schools can’t wait to be invited. We must crash the party. So, in the spirit of transgression, let’s now explore the perilous intersection of technology, pedagogy, and the future of education.”
(Peter Morville a.k.a. @morville ~ Semantic Studios)
Tales of Designer Initiation: The UX Design Boot Camp
“Our objective during the UX Design Boot Camp was to design a user interface for a new product concept in only two weeks. Four new team members paired up to form two teams that would work on separate design projects. Deliberately vague, the description of the design problem for each pair comprised fewer than five sentences.”
(Lauren Shupp and Davis Neable ~ UXmatters)
On the scalability of design thinking and transdisciplinary design education
“Interview with Tim Brown, CEO and president of IDEO, at the Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in 2011. Topics include design thinking and India, design,innovation and entrepreneurship driving India’s inclusive growth, transdisciplinary design education and design thinking and designers.” (aabhira aditya
College Students on the Web
“Students are multitaskers who move through websites rapidly, often missing the item they come to find. They’re enraptured by social media but reserve it for private conversations and thus visit company sites from search engines.” (Jakob Nielsen
Education and the Social Web: Connective learning and the commercial imperative
“In this paper, I argue that commercial social networks are much less about circulating knowledge than they are about connecting users (‘eyeballs’) with advertisers; it is not the autonomous individual learner, but collective corporate interests that occupy the centre of these networks. Looking first at Facebook, Twitter, Digg and similar services, I argue their business model restricts their information design in ways that detract from learner control and educational use. I also argue more generally that the predominant ‘culture’ and corresponding types of content on services like those provided Google similarly privileges advertising interests at the expense of users. Just as commercialism has rendered television beyond the reach of education, commercial pressures threaten to seriously limit the potential of the social Web for education and learning.” (Norm Friesen ~ First Monday 15.12