Recent Posts

Critique: Website and Customer Experience

DC06_CCmusic site
Special holiday episode! Good online shopping requires a usable website and prompt customer service. Tim and Tom discuss their experiences with, website for legendary merchant Collector’s Choice Music. A terrific print catalog does not automatically translate into a terrific website–what do they do well and what needs help?
PLUS the show’s email address is revealed, an interview with a special guest from the North Pole gets out of hand, and house band Peter Grey sings of peace and love. Season’s greetings and lots of luck to you and yours in the new year.
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Critique: Non-Dorky Headphones, the Sennheiser PX-100

Photo of PX100 headphones

You don’t have to look like you’re waving in planes at the airport to enjoy good headphone sound. This is another single point perspective, where only one person has experience with the product. In this case, Tim couldn’t bear to live even a week without his PX-100 headphones, but he allows Tom to at least try them on during the show. What makes a great headphone design? It isn’t only about audio quality and price. New word: cosmesis… Funny stories about cords… Another song from the house band… Email address coming soon!
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Critique: Cyclometers

Occasionally, Design Critique features a single-point perspective on a product because the other guy isn’t able to borrow it long enough to be thorough. Such is the case with Tom’s cyclometers, exercise computers for bicycles. Tom can’t lend his bike to Tim for a month, but he can explain what cyclometers do, how they do it, and why he prefers one to the other. Learn along with Tim about these handy gadgets. What makes a good cyclometer design? Also, more music from our “house band”.
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Wordcast: Luddite

Chalkboard image of the word Luddite
In our first “wordcast” episode, Tom brings us the infamous term Luddite. Is there such a thing as a neo-Luddite? Tim hazily yet fondly recalls Neil Postman’s classic book Technopoly and its warnings against technological determinism. Is your life enhanced or hindered by technology? We all have choices. Finally, the Design Critique “house band” makes its debut.
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DC002 Critique: iPod Shuffle (original)

Pictures of front and back of the iPod Shuffle
Tim and Tom review the originalApple iPod Shuffle. Tim explains Design Critique’s “longitudinal review” approach. After we praise the Shuffle’s strong design points, Tim rages against MP3 players’ tendency to insert gaps of silence between tracks that are seamless on compact disc. The righteous indignation continues as we discuss customer experience with regard to digital rights management. Is the music industry at war with its own customers? Hold onto your hats, folks…
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DC001 Critique: Interactive Amnesia, Sony Shower CD Radio Reviewed

photo of product UI

Tim and Tom debate the merits of the Sony Shower CD Radio, model ICF-CD73V. Topics include the difficulty of designing for a complex audience, and the need for buffers in electronics so they remember things like point last played on a CD,  settings when batteries are changed, and a few seconds of buffer memory to cover bump-induced skips during playback.

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