Recent Posts

Interview: Sam Ng on the Optimal Workshop

Logo for the Optimal WorkshopTim interviews Sam Ng from New Zealand’s own Optimal Usability about the design and development of Optimal Workshop. This UX design suite combines three applications, including OptimalSort which we talked about in DC42, and we hear how a UX research and design consultancy becomes a product developer. What’s it like to walk the UX talk we tell our clients when they create products? Listen up and find out!

Optimal Workshop is at
www.optimalworkshop.com

Optimal Usability is at
www.optimalusability.com

New Zealand isn’t just about cool accents, great UX practitioners, and beautiful sights, though. No sirree. There’s a whole tradition of innovative and very top-quality music from this small country at the bottom of the world.
Hear ye! We close this episode with a full song from a great New Zealand musician, Phil Judd. His self-published “Novelty Act” album in 2006 is still the best album Tim has heard in a very long time. Phil Judd co-founded Split Enz in the mid-70s with Tim Finn, was the driving force behind later bands The Swingers and Schnell Fenster, and has done terrific soundtracks as well. “Falling Off A Cloud” is one of Phil’s more upbeat numbers, but the amazing “Novelty Act” album is full of classic Judd variety: fun poppy weirdness, hard-rockin’ weirdness, sensitive and tragic ukelele weirdness… just catchy, infectiously complex pop genius.

http://profile.myspace.com/philjuddmrphudd

www.PhilJudd.com

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Interviews: World Usability Day 2008 at Michigan Tech

Logo for Michigan TechRecorded live at the poster session of Michigan Tech’s first World Usability Day event! Tim Keirnan interviewed the student teams about their posters, the projects behind the posters, and the processes they followed to ensure that project deliverables were useful and usable for end users.

The date was November 13, 2008. The place was Michigan Technological University’s Memorial Union. Listen to this episode with headphones and feel like you’re really there…yep, this episode’s in stereo.

Thanks to the students who talked to Design Critique about their projects. Thanks also to Karla Kitalong and the WUD-U.P. volunteers, Bob & Evie Johnson, Chad Esselink, and the Ford Motor Company.

Finally, here’s the Wikipedia entry on Yogi Berra, whom listener Brian in Colorado mentioned in his email.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yogi_Berra

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Interview: Design of the DeWalt Worksite Radio with Brian Matt of Altitude, Inc.

Photos of the WorkSite Radio from several angles.Brian Matt, founder and CEO of product innovation firm Altitude, Inc., joins Timothy Keirnan for a discussion of how Altitude designed the award-winning Worksite Radio for DeWalt.

You can find Altitude here:

www.altitudeinc.com

DeWalt DW911 Worksite Radio/Charger links include the following:

http://www.idsa.org/catalyst/case_studies/2004/index.aspx

http://images.businessweek.com/ss/05/06/idea2005/source/152.htm

Recorded October 14th, 2008.

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Interview: Jeff Patton at UI13 on User-Centered Design in Agile Projects

Tim Keirnan interviews Jeff Patton at User Interface 13 in Cambridge, MA, on October 15th, 2008, after Jeff’s full-day seminar “Bringing User-Centered Design Practices Into Agile Development Projects”.

You can find Jeff at
http://agileproductdesign.com

We conclude with email from Jan in Germany, Francisco in Portugal, and Andy from England. You can learn about UXLondon at
http://uxlondon.com

Finally, Jan’s video blog, IA Television, is here:
http://iatelevision.blogspot.com

Thanks to User Interface Engineering for sponsoring this particular episode.

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Happy New Year for 2009

Photo of Tim in front of MINI Cooper with Christmas lights glowing on it.Hi everyone,
Thanks for listening to Design Critique over the past year. 2008 was fun and I have three episodes in post-production right now for 2009. The photo is from the holiday card I sent this December to family and friends, and I thought why not share it with the listeners. I don’t know who all of you are or where you are, but I appreciate that you’re out there. I wish a useful, usable, and enjoyable new year to all of you.

Best regards,
Tim

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Interview: Dana Chisnell at UI13 on Usability Testing in the Wild

Tim Keirnan interviews Dana Chisnell at User Interface 13 on October 14th, 2008, regarding her presentation “The Quick, the Cheap, and the Insightful: Conducting Usability Tests in the Wild”.

Dana is coauthor of “The Handbook of Usability Testing 2nd Edition” with Jeff Rubin.

Plus we have email from Aydincan in Turkey, from Cecil about shaving and the Twinplex Stropper, and from Jorg on Amazon’s new frustration-free packaging:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=200285450

http://www.amazon.com/frustration

Thanks to User Interface Engineering for sponsoring this particular episode.

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Interview: Karen Bachmann on the UX Watercooler

Forum banner from the UX WatercoolerKaren Bachmann joins Tim Keirnan for a discussion of the UX Watercooler, a new online community for anyone interested in User Experience research and design. Please check it out at:

http://uxwatercooler.ning.com/

Listener emails about shaving UX conclude this episode.

Don’t forget World Usability Day on Thursday, November 13th! Learn more about the world-wide learning celebration at:

http://www.worldusabilityday.org/

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Interview: Ginny Redish, Author of Letting Go Of The Words: Writing Web Content That Works

Cover of Ginny's new book.Ginny Redish joins Tim Keirnan and SpecialSecretSuperSurprise Guest Cohost for a freewheeling discussion of her newest book Letting Go Of The Words: Writing Web Content That Works. Ginny’s ground-breaking career,  books, presentations, and many articles have been very influential on Tim’s and Cohost’s professional development in user experience research and design.

You can find Ginny’s website at http://www.redish.net/

Ginny’s other two books that Tim mentioned were:

User and Task Analysis for Interface Design (with JoAnn Hackos)

and

A Practical Guide to Usability Testing (with Joe Dumas)

Karen Bachman wrote to tell us about the UX Watercooler at
http://uxwatercooler.ning.com

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Critique: Shaving Razors

Photo of many shaving razors.Attention all shavers everywhere: it’s a shaving razor user experience extravaganza! Tim Keirnan is joined by four count ’em FOUR co-hosts in this special extended edition of Design Critique. Mike Beasley, Dave Mitropoulos-Rundus, John Rivard, and Rodney Hampton donate their time, their insights, their humor, and their razors to a freewheeling discussion of razor design.

What makes for a good shaving razor design? What defines a good shaving experience? What is it about Mike’s t-shirt that makes passersby ask him “What is usability?” as he saunters down the street? Why did Rodney switch to a straight razor, and how difficult is it to use? How to be green and save money on your shaving tools…You’ll hear all this and more. Ladies, we don’t mean to exclude you and some of the content may apply to your world, too.

Here are Rodney’s suggested shaving links:

http://artofmanliness.com/2008/01/04/how-to-shave-like-your-grandpa/

http://artofmanliness.com/2008/05/20/rediscovering-the-barbershop/

Tim offers the following links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straight_razor

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweeney_Todd

As per Rodney, look on YouTube for some intriguing videos of single blade and straight razor shaving. There are alternative to the current multi-bladed cartridge razors.

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Interview: Designing the UX of Conferences with Jared Spool

Jared Spool of User Interface Engineering joins Timothy Keirnan to talk about designing the user experience of a conference. Jared has attended many conferences, presented at many conferences, and hosted many conferences. Themes discussed include:
* Designing the user experience for the attendees
* Designing the user experience for the presenters
* What Jared looks for in a conference facility
* The importance of food at a conference
* The importance of audiovisual resources
* Presenters’ own obligation to ensure a good user experience for their session attendees

User Interface Engineering will host User Interface 13 this October in Cambridge, MA. See details at
http://www.uie.com/events/uiconf/2008/

If you are hosting a conference related to user experience research and design, tell us about it by clicking the Send Email To The Show link at the top left of the DesignCritique.net blog page.

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