Uncomfortable UX:
making life difficult and
improving your product
Chris Atherton
Senior UX Consultant
Equal Experts
@fini...
pain in the ass
GOV.UK
usability of
online visa forms
no plan survives contact
with the enemy
— Field Marshall Helmuth von Moltke the Elder
no wireframe survives
contact with the user
my mission:
ants in your pants
I want you to get
UNCOMFORTABLE
out of your
comfort zone
strong urge to
make things better
uncomfortable is where
progress happens
1. uncomfortably
fast research cycles
test early,
test often
are you doing any
usability testing with
real people?
are you testing in every
development cycle?
has the product
you’re testing
been released yet?
test in every
development cycle
...learn in every
development cycle
test early,
test often
test lightweight
we went to
language schools
we used gotomeeting
I went to Starbucks
2. uncomfortably
unfinished product
“it’s not ready
to test yet”
“what do we have that
nobody’s seen?”
consider ...
how much authority
you’re wearing
... they might need
permission to criticise
we used flat mockups
sometimes we used
comic sans
users don’t care
if it’s not finished
3. uncomfortable
team involvement
wireframing workshop
“come with us and
observe research”
“come with us
and take notes”
“come with us and
talk with our users”
‘bring your own
device’ day
solutions sessions
4. uncomfortable
communication
affinity sorts
quick and dirty
email summaries
show video clips
every cycle
video clips should be
EXCRUCIATING
show, don’t tell
inexpensive software
clip libraries
5. uncomfortable
personal growth
take risks
learn new skills
challenge the client
can’t complain
nobody understands UX
can’t dismiss users
can’t dismiss usability
may become
MOTIVATED
may have to start
LIKING PEOPLE
your mission:
ants in their pants
Katy Arnold @katyarnie
Simon Bostock @i4_1
Clare Wilcockson @clarewilcockson
Andy Kemp @kyndainverse
Ed Horsford @edwardho...
Craft conference — uncomfortable ux 25apr14
Craft conference — uncomfortable ux 25apr14
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Craft conference — uncomfortable ux 25apr14

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Title: Uncomfortable UX: making life difficult and improving your product 

Description: No wireframe survives contact with the user. This is great for UX people, because it means our lives are never dull — but it also makes things complicated for developers who just want to get on and build something. While it can be uncomfortable to challenge a team’s assumptions about what you are building and who it’s for, it is absolutely worthwhile. In this session, I will talk about: 
* getting over the fear of putting something half-finished in front of users  
* how to get fast feedback from your users 
* different ways to involve your team in research 
* quick methods for communicating research findings
* some surprising ways that continuous feedback from users benefits everyone 

Published in: Design, Technology, Business

Craft conference — uncomfortable ux 25apr14

  1. 1. Uncomfortable UX: making life difficult and improving your product Chris Atherton Senior UX Consultant Equal Experts @finiteattention
  2. 2. pain in the ass
  3. 3. GOV.UK
  4. 4. usability of online visa forms
  5. 5. no plan survives contact with the enemy — Field Marshall Helmuth von Moltke the Elder
  6. 6. no wireframe survives contact with the user
  7. 7. my mission: ants in your pants
  8. 8. I want you to get UNCOMFORTABLE
  9. 9. out of your comfort zone
  10. 10. strong urge to make things better
  11. 11. uncomfortable is where progress happens
  12. 12. 1. uncomfortably fast research cycles
  13. 13. test early, test often
  14. 14. are you doing any usability testing with real people?
  15. 15. are you testing in every development cycle?
  16. 16. has the product you’re testing been released yet?
  17. 17. test in every development cycle
  18. 18. ...learn in every development cycle
  19. 19. test early, test often test lightweight
  20. 20. we went to language schools
  21. 21. we used gotomeeting
  22. 22. I went to Starbucks
  23. 23. 2. uncomfortably unfinished product
  24. 24. “it’s not ready to test yet”
  25. 25. “what do we have that nobody’s seen?”
  26. 26. consider ... how much authority you’re wearing
  27. 27. ... they might need permission to criticise
  28. 28. we used flat mockups
  29. 29. sometimes we used comic sans
  30. 30. users don’t care if it’s not finished
  31. 31. 3. uncomfortable team involvement
  32. 32. wireframing workshop
  33. 33. “come with us and observe research”
  34. 34. “come with us and take notes”
  35. 35. “come with us and talk with our users”
  36. 36. ‘bring your own device’ day
  37. 37. solutions sessions
  38. 38. 4. uncomfortable communication
  39. 39. affinity sorts
  40. 40. quick and dirty email summaries
  41. 41. show video clips every cycle
  42. 42. video clips should be EXCRUCIATING
  43. 43. show, don’t tell
  44. 44. inexpensive software
  45. 45. clip libraries
  46. 46. 5. uncomfortable personal growth
  47. 47. take risks
  48. 48. learn new skills
  49. 49. challenge the client
  50. 50. can’t complain nobody understands UX
  51. 51. can’t dismiss users
  52. 52. can’t dismiss usability
  53. 53. may become MOTIVATED
  54. 54. may have to start LIKING PEOPLE
  55. 55. your mission: ants in their pants
  56. 56. Katy Arnold @katyarnie Simon Bostock @i4_1 Clare Wilcockson @clarewilcockson Andy Kemp @kyndainverse Ed Horsford @edwardhorsford Equal Experts GOV.UK team
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