UX Collective

UX Collective

Curated stories on user experience, usability, and product design.

UX Collective

UX Collective

Is Neumorphism a trend or design nonsense?

Is Neumorphism a trend or design nonsense?

Neumorphism is an upward trend in 2019–2020, a style to which we owe the appearance of dribbble. Already the fact that this style was born on this site, should have warned the thinking designer: many know that dribbble — a collection of often insanely beautiful, but absolutely not working design. Design for likes — that’s what dribbble is all about. In my opinion, it is not surprising that neumorphism is completely unviable, impractical and unrealistic style in design. What my opinion is based on is this material.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Designing for Privacy: adding a messaging feature to Venmo

A Venmo feature concept.

An unlikely marriage

Venmo was originally thought of by its founders as a way to bring levity to what is typically an awkward interaction: asking someone to pay you back. With this idea they merged personal finance with social media, an uncommon pairing.

The social network feature within the app is an essential component of Venmo’s unique value add and at least partially responsible for its rapid adoption, especially among millennials. Not only does Venmo enable easy and efficient payments among peers, it adds an aspect of connection and fun to otherwise boring transactions.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Quarantine Club, Figma Remote, Coloring Dribbble — and more

A weekly selection of design links, brought to you by your friends at the UX Collective.

We’ll get through this.

Stories from the community

It’s only slightly off-center; what’s the big deal?
By Michal Malewicz

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UX Collective

UX Collective

5 rules for an optimal information processing model

WeWe live in interesting times. No need to tell you this, while I am writing this article the whole world is single focusing on solving a global pandemic crisis. In these times of uncertainty, if there is something I can tell for sure is that the world after this crisis won’t be the same as we know it today.

Paradoxically, a changing world is no news for us, humans of the 21st century. The continuous flow and fluctuation of information and the speed our societies are changing year over year make us more prepared than ever to adapt to the new world that will emerge after this crisis. It happened after the Black Monday of 1987, 9/11 and the financial crisis of 2008 and it is happening again.

Read the article (5 min read)
UX Collective

UX Collective

Itturat. Ituratte. Iterat. Iterate. Iterate.

Iteration is the key to a successful design. Start small and make incremental improvements. Why? Good question.

A high school ceramics teacher wanted to do an experiment. At the beginning of the school year, he divided his class into two groups.

  • Group A had one objective: make the perfect pot. They only had to make one pot the entire school year, but it better be flawless to get an A.
  • Group B had a different objective: make as many pots as possible. They were graded on weight. If they made 50 lbs of pots, they got an A, 40 lbs a B, and so on.

At the end of the school year, the ceramics teacher had astonishing results. The best pots came from group B. Why?

Iteration.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Project planning for designers: don’t focus on features; plan for the purpose

When planning, we often can’t see the forest for the trees. Design teams can be the rangers.

Historic image of forest ranger with map on a mountain overlooking a forested landscape.

“I see, you cannot see the wood for the trees.”
– John Heywood, The Proverbs of John Heywood: 1546.

PProject plans are a particular species of spreadsheet best suited for very few of Myers-Brigg’s personality types. I am not one of them. A familiar feeling often washes over me as soon as I see a one. If User Experience and Design planning was a game of poker, (the comparison can feel accurate at times) then the project plan would be the tell. The feeling is similar to walking into a room in the middle of someone telling a good story. ‘Wait.” I want to say. “Stop. Go back. Start over.”

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Impatience, my nemesis

Time-lapse photo of a man dancing… still within the motion

II am not a patient person. I tend to move fast, be action-oriented, and eager to jump into solving the next shiny problem. This can make me anxious and overwhelmed as I commit to too many things. I logically know that I’d like more patience in my life; and I simultaneously struggle with it. I’ve learned that I often need to run head-long at the struggle and in moving through it, truly internalize the value of patience. I’m sharing what I’ve learned through working with my coaches, and also while experiencing coronavirus and shelter-in-place. It is a work in progress.

Have you heard the old Zen story of a woman who speaks to a Master, to ask about enlightenment?

Woman: Master, I want to reach enlightenment. How long will it take me?

Master: It will take you 10 years of studying, praying, meditating, reflecting…

Woman: But Master, I will study, pray, meditate and reflect harder than anyone you have ever met. How long will it take me to reach enlightenment?

Master: Well, then it will take you 20 years!

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UX Collective

UX Collective

TikTok: designing digital products for the millennial mindset

TikTok: designing digital products for the millennial mindset

The time is not far when your major user base will be millennials (people born after year 2000), and other population groups will become corner cases. There are already products in the market that are being built by keeping only the millennial population in mind.

Some of my cousins and juniors fall in the same category, and I’m happy to share their thoughts and views about a lot of things in life, especially about the kind of digital products that they use and why.

MMillennials are different than everyone else. Not because they are born in the age when tech had dominated the world, and doing tough things, like talking to someone residing outside your country, was easy.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Reticle-design for augmented reality software

TThere are so far very few ready-made solutions or established rules for augmented reality design. I decided to share with you my experience in developing one successful interface solution for AR. Using wiARframe software for creating scenes and augmented reality objects (AR), I noticed that there is no important interface element — the sight. I used the software to test some interface elements and interact with them in AR and very often did not understand: whether I point the center of the screen at the object and it just slows down, or should, for example, slightly to the right. All problems that arise with pointing and focusing on the object could easily solve the sight.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

The hilariously bad UX of Larry David’s lady’s restrooms

Curb your user experience — you are not your user.

A toilet

WWhile watching a recent season of one of my favorite television shows, Curb Your Enthusiasm, I discovered that comedian Larry David had accidentally provided an outstanding (and hilarious) example of what can go terribly wrong when you skip user research and make assumptions about what other people want based on your own feelings and experience.

Who knew my favorite curmudgeon had something to teach us all about user experience design?

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UX Collective

UX Collective

This is where I was wrong about UX: Emotional Design in 2020

Do you stand bold with the flag that UX Design is nothing but functional? If yes, then it’s time to put that flag down, young champ.

OOnce upon a time, a young graduate from an engineering college landed into the world of design. His design philosophy was derived from the folks around him who talked nothing but numbers (core engineering branches).

He formed a strong analytical approach to UX design and wanted to live with just black lines and boxes (wireframes). He maintained a strong analytical stance of design to be nothing but usable.

This life would have been fine but he formed another strong approach. And that approach was anti-art.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Inspiration design films for times of self-isolation

Now that we are all stuck inside for a while it is a good opportunity to keep inspired. Here is a list of inspirational content to help stave off the challenges and keep you curious.

Designers to listen to

Willem Hendrik Crouwel is one of the greatest graphic designers worldwide. He studied at the Academie Minerva (Art School) in Groningen.

Designculture * Wim Crouwel

Willem Hendrik Crouwel is one of the greatest graphic designers worldwide. He studied at the Academie Minerva (Art…

Hartmut Esslinger — Advice For Designers a German-American industrial designer and inventor. He is best known for founding the design consultancy Frog Design Inc.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Design fundamentals every creative should know

A 101 guide to basics in UX and product design for beginners

AAsimple Google search for educational design resources online yields 6,250,000,000 results — there’s no wonder for those starting out as a designer, it may feel overwhelming to know where to begin. As with mastering any subject, grasping key foundational knowledge is critical before becoming an expert in the field.

Below are some crucial facets of design I believe every creative should know. As a product designer, I can attest that I use my knowledge in these pillars in some way, shape, or form in my day-to-day role.

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UX Collective

80/20 remote user research -even quarantine can’t stop the data

Photo of a man in a black hat and black coat and jeans standing on a ledge looking out over a foggy field

FFor anyone who had in person user research planned, being in quarantine has definitely thrown a wrench in your plans. But never fear, there are some great remote research options out there, one of which I’m going to outline in this article. It’s called Pareto Principle (80/20 Rule) Based User Research. It’s actually my favorite method in general, even when I’m not locked away!

I conducted this research several times at my previous startup, and got some pretty stellar results each time. Best part? It’s quick, and potentially free!

I wrote a more in depth article that includes the history of Pareto Based Research if you want to know more. This is the abridged version to get you ramped up quickly.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Don't build a bazooka to kill a mosquito

What is the right solution for the problem we want to solve?

Don't build a bazooka to kill a mosquito

I need to be honest with you, this is a trap, which I have fallen into multiple times. Therefore I'd say I've got some experience on it, I want to share with you one story.

In one of the companies I worked for, we had to build an authentication system, that would be used only internally, back then there were around 50 employees and in the future the company aimed to reach around 300 employees.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

How to be successful with a no-budget work project

A useful tool and five unusual sources of funds to get your project off the poverty line.

On a professional level, people like to tell me their problems.

I am a consultant who specialises in the digital enablement of businesses, their people and their customers. The problems that people share with me centre around this. The number one ‘gripe’ that people have is the lack of funds.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

The principled designer

Dismantling workplace silos with principles, not processes.

LLet’s start with a cautionary tale about The Ladders — an online job search company whose design strategy failed in six months. The Ladders is a job search site catering to people who make $100,000 or more. Both job seekers and employers pay a monthly fee for a variety of services like exclusive access and resume editing.

In 2013, Ladders founder, Marc Cenedella, saw membership numbers dropping. Cenedella decided the creation of a new service would turn things around for the company.

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UX Collective

UX Collective

Designing questionnaires that actually work

Why dissecting unrelated user experiences is more helpful than asking about preferences.

A welcoming lobby with a sleek metal top table featuring a wooden Connect Four game.

Users rarely know what they want

“Know Thyself,” the ancient Grecian expression warns us. “Easier said than done,” the Renaissance phrase answers. In the design process, much time and money is wasted because users do not know what they want. Not only that, but asking users directly what they want rarely works, because they often lack self-awareness in this arena, or find it ineffable — unable to describe what they feel. Thus the expression, “I know it when I see it.”

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UX Collective

UX Collective

The Power of Purpose

How many times have you read, heard or said that phrase in the last couple of weeks? A cliché from the professional ‘world’ I recently left behind was the natural bridge to describe or rationalise the launch of, or challenge to, a particular product or service. It now has an entirely new meaning. It has found pertinence in ways I have never experienced before in my career (or life) and has the rare sensation of being authentic and accurate.

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