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Usability:  An Overview W Craig Tomlin, Certified Usability Analyst www.usefulusability.com [email_address]
What Usability Is  <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development life...
What Usability Is  <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development life...
What Usability Is  <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive po...
What Usability Is  <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive po...
What Usability Is  <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive po...
What Usability Is  <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive po...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Focus Group: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus groups are used for eliciting new ideas in a “grou...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Focus Group: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus groups are used for eliciting new ideas in a “grou...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions  </li></ul></...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions  </li></ul></...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions  </li></ul></...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions  </li></ul></...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, an...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, an...
What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, an...
Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday wcraigtomlin@gm...
Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… … and these are a few special deals TASK: Find an electronic kit ...
Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… Science Town, electronic kits must be here  CLICK … and these are...
Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) 501-8612 TASK: Find an electronic kit for...
Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? Are these products? Is this the latest product catalog? wcraigtomlin@gmail...
Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? Are these products? What’s this? What’s this for? Is this the latest produ...
A Cause of Usability Failure <ul><li>Many usability failures are caused by designing systems that are not in alignment wit...
A Cause of Usability Failure <ul><li>Many usability failures are caused by designing systems that are not in alignment wit...
A Cause of Usability Failure wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) 501-8612 Step 1 – Find product categories Step 2 – Find scie...
<ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the use...
<ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the use...
<ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the use...
<ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the use...
<ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the use...
Time vs. Impact on Design wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) 501-8612 Usability’s biggest impact is early in the development...
Time vs. Impact on Design Early Development Production Prototype Impact on Design Time wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) 50...
Time vs. Impact on Design Early Development Production Prototype Impact on Design Time Ability to Make Changes “ Cost” to ...
Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability =  increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems ar...
Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability =  increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems ar...
Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability =  increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems ar...
Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability =  increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems ar...
Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability =  increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems ar...
2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigto...
2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigto...
2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigto...
Usability Testing Steps <ul><li>An overview of 1-on-1 usability testing steps: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) ...
Usability Testing Steps <ul><li>An overview of 1-on-1 usability testing steps: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) ...
Summary: Usability Overview <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software develop...
Summary: Usability Overview <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software develop...
Appendix: Usability Resources <ul><li>www.usefulusability.com  – My usability web site </li></ul><ul><li>www.upassoc.org  ...
Thank You! wcraigtomlin@gmail.com  |  (805) 501-8612 W Craig Tomlin, Certified Usability Analyst www.usefulusability.com [...
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Usability Overview by Craig Tomlin

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A brief overview of usability

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  1. 1. Usability: An Overview W Craig Tomlin, Certified Usability Analyst www.usefulusability.com [email_address]
  2. 2. What Usability Is <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development lifecycle: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Usability test: end users try to conduct specific tasks
  3. 3. What Usability Is <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development lifecycle: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Usability is an approach to product development that incorporates direct user feedback throughout the development cycle in order to reduce costs and create products and tools that meet user needs.”* </li></ul></ul>*Source: Usability Professionals Association wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Usability test: end users try to conduct specific tasks
  4. 4. What Usability Is <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive post-launch “revisions” of software </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  5. 5. What Usability Is <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive post-launch “revisions” of software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving user efficiency, which increases conversion </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  6. 6. What Usability Is <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive post-launch “revisions” of software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving user efficiency, which increases conversion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reducing the time it takes to learn to use an application </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  7. 7. What Usability Is <ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive post-launch “revisions” of software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving user efficiency, which increases conversion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reducing the time it takes to learn to use an application </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increasing user satisfaction, which positively impacts brand attitudes </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  8. 8. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Focus Group: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus groups are used for eliciting new ideas in a “group think” environment </li></ul></ul>Focus groups explore ideas in a “group-think” environment wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  9. 9. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Focus Group: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus groups are used for eliciting new ideas in a “group think” environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus groups do not test specific tasks on a “1-on-1” basis, thus are not used for usability testing </li></ul></ul>Focus groups explore ideas in a “group-think” environment wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  10. 10. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  11. 11. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys require large numbers of participants to reduce sampling error </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  12. 12. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys require large numbers of participants to reduce sampling error </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Often, what people say in a survey vs. how they actually behave are quite different </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  13. 13. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>A Survey: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys gather attitudes, beliefs & perceptions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surveys require large numbers of participants to reduce sampling error </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Often, what people say in a survey vs. how they actually behave are quite different </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability testing typically needs only 5-10 users, because the tasks are being tested, not the users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And actual user behavior is observed, not opinions </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  14. 14. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, and with a minimum of resources using web-based tools </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  15. 15. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, and with a minimum of resources using web-based tools </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Time-consuming: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Best results occur with only 5-10 users in a short period of time, each user conducting a 1 or 2 hour test session </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  16. 16. What Usability Isn’t <ul><li>Expensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usability can be conducted without an expensive facility, and with a minimum of resources using web-based tools </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Time-consuming: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Best results occur with only 5-10 users in a short period of time, each user conducting a 1 or 2 hour test session </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Preliminary results can be observed while testing, and results compiled in days, not weeks </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  17. 17. Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  18. 18. Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… … and these are a few special deals TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  19. 19. Example – Usable OK, this looks like product categories… Science Town, electronic kits must be here CLICK … and these are a few special deals TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  20. 20. Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday
  21. 21. Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? Are these products? Is this the latest product catalog? wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday
  22. 22. Example – Not As Usable Hmmm, where do I start? Are these products? What’s this? What’s this for? Is this the latest product catalog? wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 TASK: Find an electronic kit for a boy’s birthday
  23. 23. A Cause of Usability Failure <ul><li>Many usability failures are caused by designing systems that are not in alignment with the user’s “Mental Map” of a task-flow: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  24. 24. A Cause of Usability Failure <ul><li>Many usability failures are caused by designing systems that are not in alignment with the user’s “Mental Map” of a task-flow: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Step 1 – Find product categories Step 2 – Find science kits Step 3 – Find electronic kit for boy
  25. 25. A Cause of Usability Failure wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Step 1 – Find product categories Step 2 – Find science kits Step 3 – Find electronic kit for boy Aligned with Mental Map Not Aligned with Mental Map
  26. 26. <ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the user’s Mental Map </li></ul>Usability Testing in the SDLC wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  27. 27. <ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the user’s Mental Map </li></ul>Usability Testing in the SDLC wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  28. 28. <ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the user’s Mental Map </li></ul>Usability Testing in the SDLC wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  29. 29. <ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the user’s Mental Map </li></ul>Usability Testing in the SDLC wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  30. 30. <ul><li>Testing at key points of the Software Development Life Cycle improves usability, because of alignment with the user’s Mental Map </li></ul>Usability Testing in the SDLC wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  31. 31. Time vs. Impact on Design wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Usability’s biggest impact is early in the development process, due to the ability to make changes at minimal resource cost
  32. 32. Time vs. Impact on Design Early Development Production Prototype Impact on Design Time wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Usability’s biggest impact is early in the development process, due to the ability to make changes at minimal resource cost
  33. 33. Time vs. Impact on Design Early Development Production Prototype Impact on Design Time Ability to Make Changes “ Cost” to Make Changes wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Usability’s biggest impact is early in the development process, due to the ability to make changes at minimal resource cost
  34. 34. Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability = increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems are simple, they don’t make users think, so they’re faster & more satisfying, which result in increased: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  35. 35. Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability = increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems are simple, they don’t make users think, so they’re faster & more satisfying, which result in increased: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  36. 36. Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability = increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems are simple, they don’t make users think, so they’re faster & more satisfying, which result in increased: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  37. 37. Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability = increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems are simple, they don’t make users think, so they’re faster & more satisfying, which result in increased: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  38. 38. Usability Benefits <ul><li>Increasing usability = increasing application value </li></ul><ul><li>User-friendly systems are simple, they don’t make users think, so they’re faster & more satisfying, which result in increased: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  39. 39. 2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  40. 40. 2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  41. 41. 2 Types of Usability Tests <ul><li>There are many variations of usability testing, but 2 general types: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  42. 42. Usability Testing Steps <ul><li>An overview of 1-on-1 usability testing steps: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 Warning! Get your magnifying glass ready! (And this is just an overview)
  43. 43. Usability Testing Steps <ul><li>An overview of 1-on-1 usability testing steps: </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  44. 44. Summary: Usability Overview <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development lifecycle: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Usability is an approach to product development that incorporates direct user feedback throughout the development cycle in order to reduce costs and create products and tools that meet user needs.” (Usability Professional’s Association) </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  45. 45. Summary: Usability Overview <ul><li>A development approach that includes end-user feedback as part of the software development lifecycle: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Usability is an approach to product development that incorporates direct user feedback throughout the development cycle in order to reduce costs and create products and tools that meet user needs.” (Usability Professional’s Association) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Usability adds to the bottom line by: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Limiting the need for expensive post-launch “revisions” of software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving user efficiency, which increases conversion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reducing the time it takes to learn how to use a new application </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increasing user satisfaction, which impacts brand attitudes </li></ul></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  46. 46. Appendix: Usability Resources <ul><li>www.usefulusability.com – My usability web site </li></ul><ul><li>www.upassoc.org – Usability Professional’s Association </li></ul><ul><li>www.ukupa.org.uk – UPA in the United Kingdom </li></ul><ul><li>www.usability.gov – Copious usability information </li></ul><ul><li>www.sigchi.org – Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction </li></ul><ul><li>www.usabilitynet.org – European Union usability group </li></ul>wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612
  47. 47. Thank You! wcraigtomlin@gmail.com | (805) 501-8612 W Craig Tomlin, Certified Usability Analyst www.usefulusability.com [email_address]
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