Subject to Change: Creating Great Products and Services for an Uncertain World

(Guest Review by David Sherwin) Underwhelmed. We’ve all had this reaction when encountering a product or service that just didn’t cut it. Take, for example, the alarm clock next to my bed. There are two alarm switches side by side: one for me, and one for my wife. Invariably, every morning I hit the wrong switch and the alarm keeps sounding. By the time I’ve shut the thing down, my wife is wide awake. And she goes to work two hours after me… I kept thinking about my...

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Designing Gestural Interfaces

Dan Saffer has a knack for writing the right book at the right time. His first book, Designing for Interaction: Creating Smart Applications and Clever Devices pulled together various disparate approaches and aspects to interaction design into one volume. “In general, the response has been positive and it is being used by universities and others to teach new interaction designers. But now, four years after I started writing it, I’m mostly unhappy with it. It’s too theoretical...

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Web Form Design: Filling in the Blanks

I hate forms. Germany is full of bureaucrats that love them, but their forms are amongst some of the most poorly designed I have ever encountered. The ones lying under the book in the picture above have been sitting on my desk for a year waiting to find someone who can understand them. A year! What a sad indictment – whoever designed those should be weeping right now. By rights a whole book devoted to Web Form Design: Filling in the Blanks should be as interesting as watching paint dry, but...

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The User is Always Right

Reviewed by Will Evans – the first of several guest reviews to come on the DRB. See the end of the review for Will’s bio. The User Is Always Right: A Practical Guide to Creating and Using Personas for the Web is a comprehensive guide approaches user experience research like never before, and is well-written, easy-to-read, and quite user friendly. The book provides real-world examples of how user research is done in just enough detail that it can both inform an executive of the role of...

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Data Flow

If there is one resource we’re not short of these days it is data. We’re swimming in the stuff and generating it all the time. Making visual sense of all that data requires a fine balance between complexity and simplicity. Data Flow: Visualising Information in Graphic Design is an absolutely beautiful collection of some of the finest examples of the art.

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