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by Karl Smith
Welcome to the Conference
We have a very mixed group of speakers and we hope you enjoy the diversity. The change in the program is a focus on newish people to UCD who have attained some qualifications that now represent a professional UCD person.
UCD is a container for many activities and is not owned by any one more than any other.
We need to challenge UCD and ourselves over the next two days to find out more about it, delve deeper into the shadows and re-energise ourselves after another long year of trying to get businesses to think, then think about users and act upon their desires and needs as another stakeholder in every project.
We are in challenging times there are many new names for things we have been doing for years, like service design, customer experience etc. I was heartened to hear recently that CX people want to become more users centric, and then I laughed for 20 minutes.
We also need to ask ourselves some serious questions about what we actually do.
Are we really doing UCD?
I keep hearing the word Hybrid meaning no user research or testing, this also means not UCD, not UX, not CX not any other name that relates to what we sell to our clients.
Are we becoming BA’s with better graphics?
A sad indictment but the key question is on your last project can you name the non-project team, non-client team actual users that were involved? Great you can, wait if you can remember all their names the sample was too small, what you did to de-risk a low sample size.
We need to stop kidding ourselves, our clients believe less and less and need more and more proof, can you deliver it?
by Scott Weiss
Producing user experience designs for a global enterprise software company may not be easy, but it is certainly easier to get the design completed than to see it through to delivery. The inevitable discussions, disagreements and compromises can significantly degrade an excellent design to a mediocre one. Several real-life examples of difficult situations and how they were dealt with will be presented, along with a set of influence best practices.
Doing UX design for emotional users, people who are in pain, uncertain, anxious, upset etc (like a lot of patients are), people who are more likely to make mistakes, overlook information and act irrationally has its own challenges. This approach with the new nhs platform has helped create some interesting UX principles. A real problem will be brought to the table, the approach explained, and delegates will explore what kind of solutions they find.
s design becomes more strategic, it begins to impact more people than we had originally thought. The users of products, systems, and spaces are coming to realize that through networking they have an enormous amount of collective influence. This influence has begun to tailor the product needs and demands. Analytics that we get from social sites can help us not only in refining user personas but also to find gaps in the market and identify new opportunities.
Social networking has become a huge force in people's personal lives. Businesses are now seeing the potential. User centred design has since expanded from being functional to take into account many of these dimensions of the user's experience, including emotional and motivational needs.
Through this workshop we are going to demonstrate how social media technologies are allowing these participatory design techniques to transform the user centered design process.
As the market matures we are moving from a technology-centric industry to a world in which products will be defined by the understanding of their impact on people’s lives. Products that don’t have a value by themselves but as facilitators of meaningful experiences.
How a designer manage to tackle that challenge? Are the standard UX methodologies becoming a reactive process obsessed with the intrinsic physical qualities of the product o is it proactively trying to understand their value beyond ‘usage’?
I will be sharing some findings, thoughts and principles that I discovered during my career that intend to challenge some of the assumptions of the discipline. I will also describe a potential way of helping designers to kick-off the design process by placing meaning at its core”.
Real-life projects are full of challenges, blockers, and scope barriers that prevent UX practitioners to follow an archetypical user-centric process from start to finish. The aim of this workshop is to come up with a framework that will help UX practitioners to identify smart ways to mitigate these obstacles and ultimately allow them to execute their work by following baseline standards.
The process of getting a great user experience job isn’t as hard as you would think. This workshop covers all aspects of the interview process,from presenting a great resume and portfolio, what to expect during an in person interview, and how much flexibility companies have in salary and compensation. Also covered are questions to ask during the phone screen and in-person interviews, how to spot trouble signs, and what else to look for so you can find the right culture for your skills and career.
Designing for the web has made interaction designers lazy.
Before the web, we had to care about making interactions efficient because they were for pinstriped businesses or high-pressure environments like aircraft cockpits.The web changed the rules.
With the web, interfaces had to be easy for the millions of new users who were coming online. Meeting that challenge undoubtedly made interfaces better. But our designs no longer had to be efficient – people just had to think they were efficient.For users, sitting home at their computers, it’s hard to judge the passage of time. That means there’s a big difference between perceived efficiency and actual efficiency. Little by little, we’ve lost our our ability to design for actual efficiency.
It looks at what stops us designing for efficiency – why current design practice and our own misconceptions often lead us to reject the best solutions.And it explores perceived efficiency. After all, for years we managed to fool users into thinking that the web was efficient. What does the psychology of analysing conversations have to teach us?
Efficiency on it’s own isn’t enough. In fact, as I’ll show, it can be terrible. Interactions also need to be usable and satisfying. I’ll discuss how to find the right balance. I’ll distill all that down into some techniques and rules the audience can apply immediately to measure and improve their designs.Along the way, I’ll offer plenty of examples, and a few surprises.
The strength and credulity of User Experience as a discipline is its fundamental claim to be a science: routed in empirical and non-biased data from research. But within the face-paced world of business – with its tight deadlines and squeezed budgets – maintaining true scientific integrity can be an uphill challenge.
We must face up to the reality that a truly scientific approach – recruiting participants, conducting experiments – is not always going to be the cheapest approach. Drawing upon academic theories and past research papers from classical Psychology and Cognitive Science can be a powerful and cheap alternative to full-scale research within business contexts.
This workshop aims to explore the power of science and reason within business, not only as a discount method for best practices within design, but also to prime stakeholders with an appreciation for future UX research.
by Darci D
A case study of changing company culture from siloed teams to cross-disciplinary teams. The change coincided with the introduction of a UX team, so the perspective is very much on how UX influenced the change, and how UX was introduced to a company used to creating products without focus on that skillset.
by John Knight
During the past few years a number of new research areas and technologies have emerged that are driving the engagement agenda. Big Data, Content Personalisation and Wearable Computing are just some of the topics that need to be accounted for in a research and design agenda for engagement. This workshop will involve the active participation of attendees and will be structured around defining the domain, agreeing design principles and mapping research topics. The output of the workshop will be a co-created document that will be socialised during and after UCD 2013.
Each product and service that we design has a story. From the people who will use it to what the product itself offers. With the products we design we want to take our users on a journey. From start to finish with as few wrong turns or derails as possible.
by John Knight
User stories are one of the most popular alternatives to traditional user requirement specifications. But despite their promising name, user stories are not about – and don’t necessarily help – users at all. In most cases, user stories are written about roles that users adopt and take no account of the needs and behaviors of real users. Were that not indictment enough, user stories suffer from demonstrable flaws in structure and are often written by the wrong people at the wrong time.
In a world where price is a major driver for large IT service providers and financial institutions and their clients, success is often judged by delivery on time and to budget, often leading to solutions that provide sub-standard experiences. User Experience is often viewed as an unnecessary cost; however, we believe that UX and the use of UCD methods can help de-risk engagements, save costs, increase workplace productivity and end-user satisfaction.
Sharing our experiences of working as the sole UX practitioners in large organisations, we investigate methods for analysing archetypal engagements that large IT and financial institutions often enter into. Using scenario based problems and a defined analytical framework; participants will explicate the key business and economic levers from each scenario that can be used to generate organisational buy-in into the UCD process from both internal and client stakeholders. Ensuring that User Experience is viewed as a key metric for evaluating project success.
For the past few year I have been researching, working on and speaking about these topics, the concepts have evolved as time has gone on (starting with discovers then on to serendipity and beyond). It’s about getting people thinking into where things are moving and these topics touch on physical computing (such as sensors and alike).
Is User Experience Design an unattainable goal, or rather a mature multi-disciplinary field with sound, established practices? After 12 years spent learning, practising, researching, teaching, managing and evangelising UX, I believe it is still a bit of both. In truth, our discipline is in a state of flux. This presentation will look at best/bad practices in our field, both agency and client side; it will also discuss the meaning of UX in a broader context.
by Amy James
Having an understanding of basic psychological principles can help to inform good design. This workshop will demonstrate how insights from Social, Cognitive and Behavioural psychology can help to enhance future designs.
by Karl Smith
Can user experience be globalised as a service that means and delivers the same thing in every country. Moreover can user experience people be commoditised to fuel the desires to drive down costs through existing outsourcing models.
In this brief session I will cover some of the key aspects of consideration and focus on the clash between notional standardised services and skill based consultancy.
UCD and Software Development processes attempt to achieve the same results (identify what is needed, design a solution to meet the need, and validate that it meets the need), against similar constraints (cost, quality, time). The processes are connected by iterative revisions and releases of assets and deliverables.
As the scope and size of projects increases, the need for processes and accountability increases. Many lessons learned in Software Development can be applied to UCD, and applying these best practices from the start can reduce costs and improve quality through multiple revisions of a product’s lifecycle.
by Darci D
A workshop introducing a few of games with instructions on how to facilitate the games and when to use the various games.
Serendipity is a concept that has been cited as valuable in inspiring new and innovative research ideas, yet some have suggested that the plethora of search technologies that we now use may have reduced our opportunities for experiencing serendipitous moments, thoughts or ideas. Sarah will describe work done with colleagues at five other UK universities, and in partnership with collaborators including the British Library and Dundee Contemporary Arts, to consider how, and if, technologies can be designed to support and promote serendipity, and reflect on the role of traditional usability practice in developing such technologies.
In order to create products, services and interfaces which are useful, usable, emotionally engaging and pleasurable we need to have a deep understanding of the people for who we are designing.
The four pleasures is a framework for understanding people holistically. Its dimensions are:
■ Physio – to do with the body and the senses
■ Psycho – cognitive and emotional issues
■ Socio – to do with relationships
■ Ideo – values and aspirations
The presentation will describe both the theoretical basis of the framework and how it can be applied in practice.
Many examples will be given of designs that have been successful through connecting with people on one or more of these dimensions.
8th–9th November 2013