Rhonda Bracey's presentation from the WritersUA 2008 Conference (Portland, OR)
"Can you just look over these new screens for us? Oh, and can you check the error messages too? It won't take long!" If you've been asked to review a web or standalone application's user interface but don't know what to look for other than checking the text, then this session is for you. As technical communicators, we are often in a position to identify usability problems related to the logical flow, layout, and structure of the interface; inconsistencies in the design; non-compliance with standards and guidelines; ambiguous wording on labels, error messages, dialogs, and onscreen user assistance; performance issues; functional errors; and the like. Rhonda shares practical checklists of things to look for when reviewing an interface, as well as various tools that can assist you.
— YOU WILL LEARN —
* What to look for when checking an application's user interface, including overall design, textual and visual elements, user actions and interactions, navigational links, and the '-ilities': accessibility, readability, usability.
* About some tools that can help automate parts of the review process.
Other supporting material available from here: http://www.cybertext.com.au/10353.htm