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10 Usability Tips Based on Research Studies

10 Usability Tips Based on Research Studies
We hear plenty usability tips and techniques from an incalculable number of sources. Many of the ones we take seriously have sound logic, but it’s even more validating when we find actual data and reports to back up their theories and conjectures. This article discusses usability findings of research results such as eye-tracking studies, reports, analytics, and usability surveys pertaining to website usability and improvements. You’ll discover that many of these usability tips will be common sense but are further supported with numbers; however, some might surprise you and change your outlook on your current design processes. 1. The idea that users will get frustrated if they have to click more than three times to find a piece of content on your website has been around for ages. Logically, it makes sense. But why the arbitrary three-click limit? In fact, most users won’t give up just because they’ve hit some magical number. Source: User Interface Engineering Sources and Further Reading 2. Related:  User Experience

Color Theory for Designers, Part 1: The Meaning of Color - Smashing Magazine Color in design is very subjective. What evokes one reaction in one person may evoke a very different reaction in somone else. Sometimes this is due to personal preference, and other times due to cultural background. Color theory is a science in itself. This is the first in a three-part series on color theory. Warm Colors Link Warm colors include red, orange, and yellow, and variations of those three colors. Red and yellow are both primary colors, with orange falling in the middle, which means warm colors are all truly warm and aren’t created by combining a warm color with a cool color. Red (Primary Color) Link Red is a very hot color. Red can be associated with anger, but is also associated with importance (think of the red carpet at awards shows and celebrity events). Outside the western world, red has different associations. In design, red can be a powerful accent color. Examples The dark shades of red in this design give a powerful and elegant feel to the site. Cool Colors Link

4 Best User Interface Pattern Libraries | by anthony on 09/13/10 at 2:45 pm As designers, sometimes we need a little inspiration to get our creative juices flowing. Looking at examples of different user interface patterns could give us the ideas we need to design something amazing. That’s why I put together four of the best user interface design pattern libraries around the web. I have searched and looked at dozens. But these four, I believe, offer the best examples with the best navigations for browsing. Elements of Design Pattern Tap Patternry UI Patterns

10 Secret Code Phrases to Get What You Want from Your Graphic Designer Pixels, white space, focal points and sans-serif. Designers have their own language, and it’s baffling if you’re not used to it. It’s almost like we have a “secret code,” and we reserve our best work for the clients who know it. When you speak with us, you might feel like you need a translator to communicate what you want and get marketing materials that stand out. But the good news is it’s simpler than it sounds. In the end, you don’t need to know the difference between points and pixels to get the best work from your designer. Code Phrases to Avoid: Say the phrases below at your peril. When we hear these come out of your mouth, we immediately start either formulating how we can say “no” to working with you, or calculating how much more we should charge for the project so that we can cover the additional time it will take to deal with you. 1. 2.”Here, I made a layout for you.” 3. 4. 5. 6. Code Phrases to Use: The phrases below are music to our ears. 7. 8. 9. 10. The biggest secret of all?

10 Rock Solid Website Layout Examples Keeping It Simple Page layout is equal parts art and science. Creating something that’s visually attractive and unique takes an artist’s eye. However, there are several very easy to follow guidelines that you can use to create solid layouts that work for any number of cases. These principles include choosing and sticking to an alignment, structuring your whitespace properly and highlighting important elements through size, positioning, etc. Designers often stress out far too much about the layout process. In this article we’re going to take a look at ten very common layouts that you can find on countless sites across the web. If you’re a web designer, bookmark this page and come back the next time you get stuck laying out a page. Three Boxes This is probably the most simple layout on the list. The three boxes layout features one main graphic area followed by two smaller boxes underneath. This design is ideal for a portfolio page or anything that needs to show off a few sample graphics.

Head JS :: The only script in your HEAD 15 sites web developers and designers should know - Creating a good website isn't an easy task, but there's a few tools that can definitely make your developer or designer life easier. In this article, I have compiled 15 extremely useful website that any web developer or web designer should have bookmarked. ColorCombos When designing a website, one of the firsts (and most important) steps of the process is to choose a color scheme. LIpsum Who doesn’t know the extremely popular Lorem Ipsum text? What the font? You just saw a logo or website using a particular font and you enjoyed it. ConvertIcon Favicons are a must have for any website, mostly because on modern browsers as such as Firefox, it is displayed along with the site name in tabs. BgPatterns background Patterns is definitely one of the current webdesign trends. HTML Encoder Do you display code on your website? Test Everything Sprite Generator CSS Sprites is definitely a great technique to use, mainly because it reduces the number of HTTP requests. Load Impact IconFinder TypeTester CSS Tidy

25 Classic Fonts That Will Last a Whole Design Career Eric Gill, Adrian Frutiger and Max Miedinger are names we associate with the classic typefaces designers use on a daily basis. Their font creations are timeless designs that look right at home no matter what century we’re in. This collection of 25 classic fonts is a round up of the best and most popular fonts every designer should own. You can be sure that they will last your whole design career. Who hasn’t heard of Helvetica? It’s probably the most recognised classic typeface. Bodoni is a serif typeface designed by Giambattista Bodoni in 1798. Clarendon is a fantastically fat slab serif, created by Robert Besley in 1845. Akzidenz Grotesk was designed in 1896 by the H. Avenir is a geometric sans-serif typeface designed by Adrian Frutiger (recall the name? FF Din is a relatively new typeface compared to the veterans mentioned so far with it being created in 1995 by Albert-Jan Pool. Futura is another widely used font that can be seen in countless logos. Remember Adrian Frutiger?

Footer design, 200+ best As most of you guys probably know, the footer is the last significant part of a website. It tends to be used for placing important information, such as the RSS feedback button, slide galleries, contact information, latest posts, the site map, among others. But the footer its not just a large space to fill the bottom of the page. Ground-Like Footers This footers are identified by a high quality illustration on it, this is used by some designers to complete the layout of the website. 1. This is the first example we found concerning ground-like footers. 2. Octopus meets astronauts, that’s the main theme of this footer and the website in general, a lovely blue tone surrounds the website vibe. 3. In Vimeo you will find a cool footer. 4. This is a brilliant WordPress Blog footer, it reminds me of an old Chinese painting, the waterfall, the mountain, the tree, everything helps in creating a brilliant footer design. 5. 6. 7. This one reminds me of Vimeo. 8. 9. 10. 11. See? 12. 13. 14. 17. 18. 19.

User Experience Is More Than Design—It’s Strategy By Christopher Grant Ward Published: August 5, 2013 “Most technology companies and digital agencies don’t consider UX design roles to be part of strategic decision making. UX designers usually get hired to execute strategy decisions that others have already made.” User experience concerns much more than the design of elegant, usable products. UX design is typically the kind of work for which UX professionals get hired. Don’t believe me? Table 1 —Common elements of User Experience and Product Management job listings In a nutshell, the pattern is something like this: Product Management defines ; User Experience refines . “C ompanies underestimate the great, untapped potential of UX professionals to leverage their deep understanding of customers at a strategic level within an organization .” Sure, I can find a handful of postings for jobs in which User Experience may have strategic involvement, but these exceptions only prove the rule. Why? More Than Design Embrace True Ownership What’s Next?

15 Best Wireframing Tools for Designers 15 Best Wireframing Tools for Designers Building a website can be a time-consuming and expensive business. To ensure that you minimize the number of hours spent and the amount of money wasted on each project, it’s absolutely essential that you plan properly, flushing out content and functionality early, reducing rework. Most people simply use a pen and paper to plan the early stages of their website designs, but is this enough? Advertisement 1. Besides wireframes, you can use Cacoo, the online drawing tool, for creating sitemaps and network charts. 2. Balsamiq Mockups is one of the most popular wireframing tools out there and it’s easy to see why. 3. Safari, Chrome and Firefox users can make the most of Mockingbird’s exceptional prototyping abilities to make really straightforward wireframes without any unnecessary fuss. 4. HotGloo launched the latest version of its impressive online wireframing tool on 14th February 2010. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. iPlotz (free basic package) 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

Documentation | Spritely Spritely is a simple plugin with only two key methods, sprite() and pan() both of which simply animate the background-image css property of an element. The difference between the two is that a 'sprite' image contains two or more 'frames' of animation, whereas a 'pan' image contains a continuous image which pans left or right and then repeats. Typically, in either case, you would use a png file (with or without transparency) for this. You might wish to use a transparent gif for Internet Explorer 6, though it probably won't look as good. For documentation in languages other than English, please see Unoffical Documentation. Please note: there is a problem with the current version of Mobile Safari on the iPad On the iPad, using the pan() method may cause crashes in Mobile Safari. Quick start If you're impatient to try out Spritely and want to see some self-contained working examples, you can download some sample 0.4 code as a zip file. What's new in version 0.6? What's new in version 0.6? Interactive Sketching NotationHelping you tell better stories of interactionPurchase & Download for $44 CAD Watch: How I Sketch - An Intro The Interactive Sketching Notation is a visual language which enables designers to tell more powerful stories of interaction. Through a few simple rules, what the user sees (drawn in greyscale) and does (drawn in red) are unified into a coherent sketching system. Intended for Adobe Illustrator, but friendly towards Photoshop & Balsamiq. Less DocumentationHaving merged flows, user stories, sketches and wireframes into one document, it is easier to maintain your work with the notation. Inside the Template - version 1.5 Icons: 100 common interface sketch style icons for faster concepting Components: various predesigned components and elements ready for dragging and dropping ISN + MicroPersonas Bundle for $59 Get the Interactive Sketching Notation + MicroPersonas at a discount.

Bibliography Books The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst The book which sparked this website. Grid Systems in Graphic Design by Josef Muller-Brockmann The definitive word on using grid systems in graphic design. References & Tutorials Alan Wood’s Unicode Tests Massively comprehensive resource for locating and testing Unicode characters. How to size text using ems Tutorial on Clagnut which explains in detail how to size text on websites using ems. Em Calculator Handy online tool for converting pixels to ems. How to Size Text in CSS A best practice that satisfies designers and users and works across browsers and platforms. The amazing em unit and other best practices Font sizing tutorial from the W3C. Figuring It Out: OSF, LF, and TF Explained Great explanation of lining, old-style (text) and tabular figures from FontShop. Weblogs Typographica A journal of typography featuring news, observations, and open commentary on fonts and typographic design. Typophile I Love Typography Type For You

App Overload: It's Time to Clean House The other day I noticed I had more than 165 apps on my iPhone. Of them, I consistently use, maybe, 15. In other words, 91% of my apps are in the way of other apps I want to use. Organization does help, some. What I almost never do, however, is delete apps. You simply hold your finger down on any app icon until all of your apps start to nervously wiggle and black x’s appear on the upper right corner all of them ( it’s like they all know they’re up for execution it’s like they all know they’re up for execution ). You delete an app by then selecting the black “x.” You can also use this mode to drag and drop icons on top of each other to create folders. Choosing the Damned It’s not easy choosing which apps stay and which ones go. There was a time late last year when it seemed like everyone was using that app. Of course, if I’m really going to clean out my apps, I can’t think that way. One smart way of deciding which apps stay and which apps go is to apply a time stamp. We Need This Tool

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