Designing for Distraction

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Cars are cool. So are smartphones. So what happens when our on-the-go lifestyle literally collides with the ways we do all of that “on-the going”? …

Cars are cool. So are smartphones. So what happens when our on-the-go lifestyle literally collides with the ways we do all of that “on-the going”?

Distracted driving is a very real danger, but at Audible, a majority of our users listen to audiobooks behind the wheel.

How do you create a great experience when you have to balance a user’s desire for a “killer app” with one that will not get them killed?

At Audible, we took on the task of optimizing our highly-rated listening experience for playback behind the wheel. We quickly figured out that it wasn’t going to be that easy.

I will present an overview of a year-long engagement on the Audible car project, including contextual research insights on how users engage with their devices in the car, and the surprising ways those insights expressed themselves in a radically redesigned application.

I will include the cognitive science that influenced our design decisions including why multi-tasking is so dangerous, and why choosing images over text is better for "quick glance" interfaces.

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  • 1. IF UX CAN KILL IT PROBABLY WILL Design for the 70 MPH Interface Trip O’Dell Senior Interaction Designer, Audible.com @tripodellWednesday, January 30, 13 1Trip ODell, Senior Interaction Designer withAudibleIn-House Counsel asked me to change thetitle of this talk to...
  • 2. IF UX CAN KILL IT PROBABLY WILL Design for the 70 MPH Interface Trip O’Dell Senior Interaction Designer, Audible.com @tripodellWednesday, January 30, 13 1Trip ODell, Senior Interaction Designer withAudibleIn-House Counsel asked me to change thetitle of this talk to...
  • 3. UX might be bad if you are potentially distracted Design for the 55 MPH Interface Trip O’Dell Senior Interaction Designer, Audible.com @tripodellWednesday, January 30, 13 2While a little bit of a bummer, its aninteresting point, and speaks to the purposeof this talk. The conversation arounddistracting tech is being led by lawyers andpoliticians. Where is design in theconversation?
  • 4. “ HE SAID HE NEVER SAW THE PEDESTRIAN STEP INTO THE ROAD ” http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregoryjordan/Wednesday, January 30, 13 3Its seems nearly every story we hear aboutdistracted driving begins with a quote likethis.
  • 5. WHY DO WE CARE ABOUT THIS AT AUDIBLE?Wednesday, January 30, 13 4
  • 6. ABOUT AUDIBLE • 1 million members in the US alone. • Our UX goes wherever our users go. • Audible books are often used while doing other things (crafts, chores, driving, exercising) • Most of our users listen (at least some of the time ) while driving. 5Wednesday, January 30, 13 5We are a membership business, and alifestyle product, not just a book store.
  • 7. AUDIBLE IS PART OF A CONNECTED LIFESTYLECredit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/noise64/3595899694/Wednesday, January 30, 13 6Audible is a continuous part of our user’slifestyle. It crosses contexts such as home,in the car, in the office. How users interactwith it needs to scale with changingcontexts.
  • 8. DISTRACTIONS CAN’T BE ELIMINATED IN THE CARPhoto  courtesy  of  my  Wife 7Wednesday, January 30, 13 7 Using a cell phone or smartphone, Eating and drinking, Talking (or yelling), Grooming, Reading, including maps Using a navigation system Watching a video Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player
  • 9. YOU CAN’T PREVENT USERS FROM DOING THE WRONG THINGS Credit: http://idrivelikeagirl.blogspot.com/2011/11/when-is-cigarette-like-cellphone.html 8Wednesday, January 30, 13 8 Using a cell phone or smartphone, Eating and drinking, Talking (or yelling), Grooming, Reading, including maps Using a navigation system Watching a video Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player
  • 10. IMPOSING FALSE CONSTRAINTS Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mroach/2765757383/ 9Wednesday, January 30, 13 9If you build your experience to create barriers, users can bealienated.
  • 11. ENCOURAGES CREATIVE SOLUTIONS Credit: http://thereifixedit.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/129093664286279532.jpgWednesday, January 30, 13 10And will devise their own, less-safealternatives. The responsible thing to do isto build an experience that works wellregardless of the context.
  • 12. YOU CAN’T DESIGN FOR STUPID http://www.smosh.com/smosh-pit/photos/20-people-doing-it-wrong-pics 11Wednesday, January 30, 13 11Designing for the edge-case is a route tofailure
  • 13. BUT YOU CAN MAKE STUPIDUNNECESSARY http://www.smosh.com/smosh-pit/photos/20-people-doing-it-wrong-pics 12Wednesday, January 30, 13 12
  • 14. We have a limited supply of resources for processing mental tasks.Wednesday, January 30, 13 13
  • 15. When we overtax that capacity we become overwhelmed and make mistakes.Wednesday, January 30, 13 14
  • 16. WE MAY PRETEND WE EVOLVED INTO THIShttps://plus.google.com/+projectglass/posts 15Wednesday, January 30, 13 15
  • 17. BUT WE ARE WIREDEXACTLYLIKE THIS GUY I hear the new iPhone is dope! Modern Hunter-gatherer Credit: Natural History Museum of Denmark 16Wednesday, January 30, 13 16The “modern” human brain evolved around50,000 years ago.
  • 18. HOW CAN DESIGN ADDRESS CONTEXTUAL DISTRACTIONS? http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregoryjordan/Wednesday, January 30, 13 17There are hazards throughout the day incontexts we don’t control.
  • 19. HOW WE EXPERIENCE Central Executive Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory Memory Baddeley & Hitch’s Working Memory ModelWednesday, January 30, 13 18This is the Working Memory model.It is how we experience the world.It is critical to understanding why people getconfused and distracted.
  • 20. ATTENTION & Central TASK SHIFTING Executive SYNTHESIS & Episodic Buffer INTEGRATION Phonological Visuospatial SHORT TERM Store Sketchpad MEMORY Declarative Procedural LONG TERM Memory Memory MEMORYWednesday, January 30, 13 18This is the Working Memory model.It is how we experience the world.It is critical to understanding why people getconfused and distracted.
  • 21. Semantic Muscle Memory Memory • Facts Central • Driving a Car Executive • Figures • Using a Fork • Concepts/Schemas • Typing Episodic Buffer • Language • Throwing a rock Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 20Long term memory is where all theimportant, skill-related information is stored- all information that can be “learned” or“known”
  • 22. Central Executive Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 21Short term memory puts the Work inworking memory, it rapidly gathersinformation but it is extremely limited.
  • 23. Lingual STM Perceptual STM Central • Words • Spaces Executive • Letters • Relationships • Numbers Episodic Buffer • Values/Qualities • Quantity • Pictures Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 21Short term memory puts the Work inworking memory, it rapidly gathersinformation but it is extremely limited.
  • 24. Short Term Memory is Extremely LimitedWednesday, January 30, 13 22
  • 25. MEMORY BITS ARE VERY SMALL • Letters • Numbers • Words • Pictures • Schemas/Objects • Compressed “Chunks” of Information 23Wednesday, January 30, 13 23
  • 26. MAXIMUM OCCUPANCY 7 BITS OF INFO CAN BE RETAINED IN MEMORY BEFORE DATA LOSS* * Actually its 7+/- 2 (7 is the safe bet) 24Wednesday, January 30, 13 24Our limited capacity has been measured to contain on average 7spots for small pieces of information. This varies betweenindividuals and the kinds of information retained - letters take lessspace than words, children retain more than the elderly.
  • 27. Central Executive Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 25
  • 28. Integrative Layer Combines stimuli from Phonological and Visuospatial layers and associates them THIS IS WHERE with knowledge from Long Term Memory Central EXPERIENCE Executive HAPPENS Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 25
  • 29. Central Executive Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 26
  • 30. So, what’s with this leftover bit? Central Executive Why is it important? Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad Declarative Procedural Memory MemoryWednesday, January 30, 13 26
  • 31. The Central Executive IT WORKS VERY Central SLOWLY COMPARED Functions Executive TO OTHER PARTS OF • Focused Attention THE BRAIN • Planning/Decision Making • Troubleshooting • Novel/Dangerous Situations Central • Inhibition/Self control ExecutiveWednesday, January 30, 13 27
  • 32. LONG STORY SHORT... NOT HERE Dude, “don’t make me Central think”! Executive DESIGN FOR HERE Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial Store Sketchpad 28Wednesday, January 30, 13 28
  • 33. Design for theHUNTERGATHERERBRAIN Modern Hunter-gatherer Credit: Natural History Museum of Denmark 29Wednesday, January 30, 13 29
  • 34. YOUR BRAIN IS A CHEAP BASTARD 30Wednesday, January 30, 13 30We have evolved compression “hacks” formore efficient thinking which is great - it iswhat allows us to do amazing things,
  • 35. Brains evolved to get MAXIMUM RETURN FOR MINIMUM EFFORT Modern Hunter-gatherer Credit: Natural History Museum of Denmark 31Wednesday, January 30, 13 31but it also has down sides, like ignoringinformation that might be relevant, or evenvital to survival.
  • 36. DESIGN FOR THE BRIAN’S AFFORDANCES 32Wednesday, January 30, 13 32Schemas and chunking are just twoexamples of the short cuts the brain uses towork around its limited capacity.
  • 37. CHUNKING Phone Numbers 33Wednesday, January 30, 13 33Chunking is one of the tricks our brain usesto compress information, and associate itwith other pieces of information. It sort offunctions like metadata.
  • 38. 14088675309 34Wednesday, January 30, 13 34This number has 10 digits, its hard to retain.
  • 39. vs. 1(408) 867-5309 35Wednesday, January 30, 13 35Breaking down the number into chunksmakes it easier.
  • 40. SAME vs. AREA CODE 867-5309 36Wednesday, January 30, 13 36Creating relationships to knowledge in longterm memory (like my own area code)make the remaining 7 pieces of informationeven easier to retain.
  • 41. SCHEMA Bird 37Wednesday, January 30, 13 37Schema are mental models we developover time to represent ideas or groups ofthingsWe create them as children and refine andbranch them as we learn and develop overour lives.
  • 42. 38 http://www.flickr.com/photos/nottsexminer/8250792366/Wednesday, January 30, 13 38We develop schemas over time, but revisethem to fit new information.
  • 43. VS. http://jerry-coleby-williams.net/2012/10/05/port-moresby-a-gritty-city-with-heart/southern-cassowary-casuarius-casuarius-nature-park/ 39Wednesday, January 30, 13 39We can recognize this as a bird, butrecognition takes longer cognitivelybecause the cassawary does not fit neatlyinto most people’s schema of what birdslook like. We evolve schemas as we learnnew things. A child may not even realize itsa bird.
  • 44. The Power of OBVIOUS 40Wednesday, January 30, 13 40
  • 45. Fitt’s Law The time required to rapidly move to a target area is a function of the distance to the target and the size of the target. Big buttons are easier targets. Especially in the car 41Wednesday, January 30, 13 41
  • 46. Hick’s Law The time required to rapidly make a choice is a function of the number of possible choices and the capacity of working memory. 42Wednesday, January 30, 13 42
  • 47. SENSORY INTERFERENCE Reduce cognitive load by giving the user fewer things to process 43Wednesday, January 30, 13 43
  • 48. WHICH WORD IS GREEN? 44Wednesday, January 30, 13 44
  • 49. GREEN RED BLUEWednesday, January 30, 13 45 45
  • 50. GREEN Central Oh... Executive “WTF?” Episodic Buffer Phonological Visuospatial “GREEN” Store Sketchpad 46Wednesday, January 30, 13 46
  • 51. 2011 Ford Edge Interior. Courtesy of Ford Motor Company 47Wednesday, January 30, 13 47
  • 52. WE BECOME CONFUSED AND FRUSTRATED WHEN WE OVERWHELM OUR MEMORY 2011 Ford Edge Interior. Courtesy of Ford Motor Company 47Wednesday, January 30, 13 47
  • 53. AN OVERLOADED BRAIN MAKES BAD DECISIONS Credit: CS Monitor - http://www.csmonitor.comWednesday, January 30, 13 48
  • 54. HE DID NOT SEE THE PEDESTRIAN IN THE ROAD http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregoryjordan/Wednesday, January 30, 13 49
  • 55. HE DID NOT REMEMBER THE PEDESTRIAN IN THE ROAD http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregoryjordan/Wednesday, January 30, 13 49
  • 56. MESSING WITH SUCCESS Redesigning Audible’s 4.5 Star App 50Wednesday, January 30, 13 50
  • 57. Audiobooks are different How many people think of digital Audiobooks 51Wednesday, January 30, 13 51
  • 58. Books on Tape START FINISH 52Wednesday, January 30, 13 52
  • 59. Digital Audiobooks BOOK FEATURES APP FEATURES CHAPTERS LIBRARY BOOKMARKS SHOP PARTS STATS BOOK DETAILS PREFERENCES SHARING BUTTON FREE MODE START FINISH 53Wednesday, January 30, 13 53
  • 60. 54Wednesday, January 30, 13 54
  • 61. Key Research Insights Long-form listening • Audiobooks are not music • focus on the “big three” Simple is safe • Fewer choices, faster reactions • Obvious is powerful Make safe better • Make it hard to lose my place • No Special Modes 55Wednesday, January 30, 13 55
  • 62. Audiobooks are not music Hide/Close player Album Skip forward Play/Pause Random Skip back Repeat Amazon cloud playerWednesday, January 30, 13 56
  • 63. Timeline Scrubber Sleep Mode Chapters Share Back to Library Gesture Mode Play/pause Playback Speed Jump back 30 seconds Bookmark Chapter back Chapter forward Rewind Fast forward Current Audible Experience 57Wednesday, January 30, 13 57
  • 64. Simple is Safe 58Wednesday, January 30, 13 58
  • 65. Simple is safe 59Wednesday, January 30, 13 59
  • 66. Simple is safe Remove Distractions, make it hard to loose my place. X X X X X X X 59Wednesday, January 30, 13 59
  • 67. Simple is safe Remove Distractions, make it hard to loose my place. Make listening easy everywhere for everyone 59Wednesday, January 30, 13 59
  • 68. Simple is safe Remove Distractions, make it hard to loose my place. Make listening easy everywhere for everyone “blind and all thumbs” 59Wednesday, January 30, 13 59
  • 69. 60Wednesday, January 30, 13 60
  • 70. The New Audible Player Back to Library Title Info Play/pause Jump back 30 seconds Bookmark Sleep Mode Playback Speed Chapters 60Wednesday, January 30, 13 60
  • 71. So where is this going? 61Wednesday, January 30, 13 61
  • 72. Credit: Wolf103FM - http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=540907 62Wednesday, January 30, 13 62How many people are using their phones inthe car today.
  • 73. http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2011/09/most-new-vehicle-interior- 63 problems-are-design-related-says-jd-power-study.html/myford-touch-4Wednesday, January 30, 13 63Soon, most cars will have some form ofdata integration
  • 74. http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2011/09/most-new-vehicle-interior- 63 problems-are-design-related-says-jd-power-study.html/myford-touch-4Wednesday, January 30, 13 63Soon, most cars will have some form ofdata integration
  • 75. 64Wednesday, January 30, 13 64But  data  doesn’t  always  “enhance”  or  support  the  driver’s  experience.    Lists  and  hierarchy  vs  chunks  and  clear  schemas.Too  many  op=ons,  too  many  similar  labels  and  func=onali=es.  
  • 76. 64Wednesday, January 30, 13 64But  data  doesn’t  always  “enhance”  or  support  the  driver’s  experience.    Lists  and  hierarchy  vs  chunks  and  clear  schemas.Too  many  op=ons,  too  many  similar  labels  and  func=onali=es.  
  • 77. 65Wednesday, January 30, 13 65Only  one  of  these  op=ons  is  useful  with  any  frequency.  MAKE  THE  SYSTEM  SMARTER.  It  should  be  smart  enough  to  know  I’m  not  driving  a  hydrogen  powered  car,  or  an  acura.  How  frequently  do  I  need  to  buy  electronics  and  parts  (hopefully  never)
  • 78. http://www.teslamotors.com/models/design 66Wednesday, January 30, 13 66Some cars are experimenting withenhancing many surfaces of the vehiclewith data.
  • 79. Systems which REACT TO DISTRACTION and Stresshttps://plus.google.com/+projectglass/posts 67Wednesday, January 30, 13 67Ultimately, I think the real experience will bea system of shared agency - where the appexperience in the car reacts to users, andadapts to their mental or physiological state
  • 80. THANKS FOR LISTENING 68Wednesday, January 30, 13 68
  • 81. QUESTIONS? (oh! and come work with me, we’re hiring!) Trip O’Dell Senior Interaction Designer, Audible.com @tripodellWednesday, January 30, 13 69