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Topic: Interaction Design

  • The Elements of Social Architecture

    by Christina Wodtke · Issue 279 ·

    While our designs can never control people, they can encourage good behavior and discourage bad. In this excerpt from Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web 2nd Edition, Christina Wodtke tells us how to make products that delight people and change their lives by remembering the social in social architecture.

  • Deafness and the User Experience

    by Lisa Herrod · Issue 265 ·

    Because of limited awareness around Deafness and accessibility in the web community, it seems plausible to many of us that good captioning will fix it all. It won’t. Before we can enhance the user experience for all deaf people, we must understand that the needs of deaf, hard of hearing, and big-D Deaf users are often very different.

  • Writing an Interface Style Guide

    by Jina Bolton · Issue 260 ·

    Ever designed or developed a beautiful interface only to find your hard work ruined months later by gaudy graphics or invalid markup? With proper documentation you'll have a better chance at seeing your interface stay beautiful. Jina Bolton guides us through the process of developing an interface style guide.

  • Sign Up Forms Must Die

    by Luke Wroblewski · Issue 255 ·

    You load a new web service, eager to dive in and start engaging, and what’s the first thing that greets you? A sign-up form. We can do better, says Luke Wroblewski, author of Web Form Design: Filling in the Blanks. Via a technique of "gradual engagment," we can get people using and caring about our web services instead of frustrating them (or sending them to a competitor's site) by forcing them to fill out a sign-up form first.

  • Designing For Flow

    by Jim Ramsey · Issue 250 ·

    Ask a web designer what makes a site great, and you're likely to hear "ease of use." Jim Ramsey begs to differ. Web applications in particular, he tells us, work best and engage most profoundly when they challenge users to overcome difficulties.

  • Understanding Web Design

    by Jeffrey Zeldman · Issue 249 ·

    We'll have better web design when we stop asking it to be something it's not, and start appreciating it for what it is. It's not print, not video, not a poster—and that's not a problem. Find out why cultural and business leaders misunderstand web design, and learn which other forms it most usefully resembles.

  • Put Your Content in my Pocket, Part II

    by Craig Hockenberry · Issue 245 ·

    Screen size matters. And now that Apple is embedding mobile Safari in more iPods than the iPhone alone, it matters even more. Concluding his remarkable two-part series, Craig Hockenberry covers the down and dirty details of designing and coding with the iPhone (and its brethren) in mind.

  • Put Your Content in My Pocket

    by Craig Hockenberry · Issue 244 ·

    In this first of two articles on bringing your content to the iPhone, the Iconfactory's Craig Hockenberry offers detailed guidance on tuning your site for the hot new phone, and making changes that can enhance even non-iPhone-users’ experience. Hotcha!

  • Never Use a Warning When you Mean Undo

    by Aza Raskin · Issue 241 ·

    Are our web apps as smart as they should be? By failing to account for habituation (the tendency, when presented with a string of repetitive tasks, to keep clicking OK), do our designs cause people to lose their work? Raskin's simple, foolproof rule solves the problem.

  • Where Am I?

    by Derek Powazek · Issue 221 ·

    It’s 2006 and we’re still messing up global navigation. Derek Powazek gets back to basics and offers a few simple guidelines for getting it right.

  • Power to the People

    by D. Keith Robinson · Issue 208 ·

    Relentlessly simple solutions to complex design problems can be the difference between an average experience and a great one. D. Keith Robinson reminds web designers and developers that ease of use is more important than technological sophistication.

  • Quick CSS Mockups with Photoshop

    by Casper Voogt · Issue 231 ·

    It may seem like we're trying to party like it's 1999, but rest assured, we're not. Casper Voogt shows us a way to use Photoshop, ImageReady, and slices to produce mockups that utilize clean XHTML and CSS.

  • Paper Prototyping

    by Shawn Medero · Issue 231 ·

    Running with scissors isn't recommended for kids, but it might be ideal for your next big development project. With interfaces becoming more complex and schedules growing shorter, the best prototyping tools may be simpler than you think.

  • Invasion of the Body Switchers

    by James Edwards, Andrew Clarke · Issue 189 ·

    Wouldn’t it be great if we could update the classic ALA style switcher to accommodate multiple users and devices, including some that aren’t even traditional browsers, all from a single JavaScript and CSS file? Well, now we can! Enter the Body Switcher.

  • Sensible Forms: A Form Usability Checklist

    by Brian Crescimanno · Issue 209 ·

    Sometimes it's the little things that drive you nuts. As many of us have probably noticed during this season of holiday shopping, usability problems in online forms can be infuriating. Brian Crescimanno helps solve the problem with a checklist of form-usability recommendations.

  • In Search of the Holy Grail

    by Matthew Levine · Issue 211 ·

    Just in case you might want a three-column layout that doesn't require the usual sacrifices, we thought we'd share this technique. Not that you'd want that or anything.

  • Flywheels, Kinetic Energy, and Friction

    by Nick Usborne · Issue 213 ·

    You want your users to do something, buy things, beg you to work for them, learn how they too can achieve inner peace. So how do you get them to do what you want? Try getting out of the way.

  • Ambient Findability: Findability Hacks

    by Peter Morville · Issue 205 ·

    In this excerpt from his new book, Ambient Findability, Peter Morville explains why findability is a required element of good design and engineering--and what that means for you.

  • Calling All Designers: Learn to Write!

    by Derek Powazek · Issue 216 ·

    You know all that copy that goes around your forms and in your confirmation e-mails? Who's writing it? Derek Powazek explains why it's important for user-interface designers to sharpen up their writing skills.

  • Reading Design

    by Dean Allen · Issue 128 ·

    With so many specialists working so hard at their craft, why are so many pages so hard to read? Unabashed text enthusiast Dean Allen thinks designers would benefit from approaching their work as being written rather than assembled.

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