Honest UX Speaks for Itself (Honest UX, Part II)As UX professionals, it is our obligation to serve users and to put others first, above our own bottom line. By providing the best user experiences, we gain trust over time, making honest UX both an ethical practice and a sustainable business plan.
Put Your UX Where Your Mouth Is (Honest UX, Part I)User experience speaks louder than words. While honest UX gains trust and long-term loyalty, deliberately tricky tactics send a message that a company doesn't value its users. What does Amazon's checkout process say about their opinion of shoppers?
Problem-Solving with Sketching and WireframingMore people are realizing the importance of UX and giving it consideration during their design processes. They're trying out various methods as supplements for content planning, and their eagerness to be less rigid and publicly resolute is reflective of the fact that UX designers aren't robots following a process "recipe." So methods such as sketching and wireframing haven't replaced IA. Rather, they are two useful tools in a toolbox of many for problem-solving and expression.
Progressive Enhancement vs. Graceful DegradationIf you aren't familiar with graceful degradation it's: "Degradation of a system (browser) in such a manner that it continues to operate, but provides a reduced level of service rather than failing completely." And the formal definition of P.E. is...well, I can't really find a formal definition. But, essentially, P.E. is the opposite of G.D. Whereas graceful degradation is consumed by "modern" browser technologies, P.E. seeks out the dated browser and establishes these browsers as baseline.
The more I mull this over, the more I realize the importance of progressive enhancement.
Disrupting User ExperienceThere's a sad and disturbing trend on the web that harkens back to an annoying time in the web's fairly short history. Remember a little security/home automation company by the name of X10 that liked to pop up (or pop under) annoying advertisements on numerous web sites you frequented?
Performance Boost: A Refresher on Speeding Up Your Web SitesThe Yahoo! Developer Network's Exceptional Performance team wrote a fairly famous article in the web designer and developer circles that offers up 35 best practices to make your web pages faster. This article, entitled simply, Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site, offers a staggering statistic that 80% of the end-user's response time is spent at the front end of loading a page.
You can do wonders for your web site just by reviewing the best practices document side-by-side with your web site.