Great strategies for designing and developing software begin with understanding your users. By directly observing people, we get to the heart of their wants, needs and motivations. In this compilation of articles, projekt202’s experts share insights on strategies for putting user research to work for your team and organization.
Photo from Fox Searchlight via Fast Co.Design
As writer Sumit Mehra, points out, “Director Wes Anderson has always been distinguished for his visual artistry, detail-rich sets, and storybook like imagery.” See how you can apply five basic principles from a comprehensive review of Anderson’s work to your next UX/UI project. projekt202 is already way ahead on leveraging number three.
— Thanks to Kelly Moran
The Anti-Design of Everyday Things
At last: The Anti-Design of Everyday Things.
— Thanks to Dennis van Huffel
Xbox, Contextual Research, and Biking
Photo by The Verge
This article shows how research in the environment (contextual inquiry, anyone?) helps to shape and form the design process. The design of the bike centers around new commuters in a city with lots of rainfall, beaches, hills and the need to quickly adapt your riding style. The design lead’s quote on integrating the lock into the handlebars has it doing duty not only as a quick-lock system, but also theft deterent: “When you come up to the bike, there’s no handlebars. If I steal this bike, how will I ride it?”
— Thanks to William Yarbrough
Gratitude in a Social, Virtual Context
In this long read, J. Nathan Mathias (a PhD student at MIT Media Lab’s Center for Civic Media) explores the implications of common human expressions of gratitude — thanking, rewarding, showing recognition — in the context of social applications. He points out different approaches to gratitude, such as the “thanks” feature on Wikipedia or the review system of Couchsurfing and discusses various ways to promote or hinder social engagement and community-building through design.
— Thanks to Amber Lindholm
Game User Research Drives the Design of the New Dungeons & Dragons
After the poor reception of Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition, the D&D team incorporated user research, player feedback, and game user testing to create Dungeons and Dragons: 5th Edition. The design team hopes hopes to winning back the hearts of role players by refocusing on storytelling, in-depth rules and mechanics, and looking toward the future of the D&D franchise.
— Thanks to Rae Gibbs
Customizable Ambient Sound
Noisli — a project by Italian multidisciplinary designer, Stefano Merlo, is an ambient, high-quality sound and color generator for working and relaxing. The app features various sounds, including rain, thunderstorm, bonfire, forest, train and seaside — all of which can be toggled and layered with varying emphasis to produce your ideal sound combination. An everyday app with a beautiful and minimalist user interface. Clean, crisp icon design with excellent use of color.
— Thanks to Oscar Tellez
Design Thinking and Airbnb
Video from First Round
This article presents an in-depth look at how solving problems through design, specifically getting into the shoes of the user, allows shareholders to want to solve problems in a larger capacity. The founders dropped their mentality that the solution needed to be scalable in favor of just choosing a path that would work to drastically improve the user experience. Encouraging all design decisions and then validating those changes with actual data fosters an experimental and design-driven culture.
— Thanks to William Yarbrough