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  • The Problem with Patterns

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    Design systems have become the norm for organizations big and small. Yet, as more of our products and services move online, we can learn a thing or two from the world of service design. A dependence on any form of design system can create a pattern of ignoring our users’ context, hindering the design process, and even our own sense of empathy.

  • Orchestrating Experiences

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    Experiences are formed by touchpoints, some tangible, others less so. This excerpt from Orchestrating Experiences is a deep dive into the world of touchpoints, helping you understand how to coordinate them to build a seamless experience.

  • The Cult of the Complex

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    ’Tis a gift to be simple. ALA’s Zeldman bemoans our industry’s current fetish for the needlessly complicated over the straightforward. Escape the cult of the complex! Get back to improving lives, one interaction at a time.

  • So You Want to Write an Article?

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    Ready to write a professional article? Make sure your submission is the best it can be! ALA editor Brandon Gregory gives some advice on common pitfalls the editorial team sees in article submissions, including advice for picking your topic, writing intros, and adding authority to your ideas.

  • We’re Looking for People Who Love to Write

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    Publishing on A List Apart isn’t as easy-peasy as dashing off a post on your blog, but the results—and the audience—are worth it. And when you write for A List Apart, you never write alone: our industry-leading editors, technical editors, and copy editors are ready to help you polish your best idea from good to great. Come share with us!

  • Priority Guides: A Content-First Alternative to Wireframes

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    The sirens’ song of wireframe visuals has been the thorn in the side of many a design project. With potential to undermine user-centricity, reduce team engagement, and limit creativity when it’s most needed, wireframes can bite the unwary. In this article, Heleen van Nues and Lennart Overkamp discuss an alternative that’s far more in tune with today’s content-first, responsive design ethos, whether used as a direct replacement or to help tame wireframes’ wilder side early in a project’s life.

  • The Illusion of Control in Web Design

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    We think of our job as controlling the user’s experience. But the reality is, we control far less than we imagine. And that’s by design: it’s how the web, and the networks that serve it, are supposed to work. ALA’s Aaron Gustafson shows the many ways our medium conspires to break our carefully crafted experiences, and shares solid advice on what we can do about it.

  • Working with External User Researchers: Part II

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    Most people agree that it’s important to get feedback from users, but in reality, not everyone can afford a dedicated user researcher on their team. In this second and final installment on working with external user researchers, we focus on how to get things done once you’ve found the right person to bring onto your project. With these best practices around on-boarding and collaboration, you’ll be able to get the most value for your money, and get the most candid insights into what your users really think.