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Uwe usability evaluation


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Quick overview of usability evaluation, primarily involving user testing, probably only makes sense if you were there when I presented it.

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Uwe usability evaluation

  1. 1. Usability Evaluation Lon Barfield (26 slides)
  2. 2. Evaluation of anything ... that is designed for external consumption, needs to be evaluated by external agents. Can be a front end, film, pepsi challenge… or a piece of writing. Is the work fit for purpose? Should be a no-brainer, but...
  3. 3. Reasons not to evaluate It is a hassle You lay your work open to external opinion Alterations will mean more work Some people think it is better just to assume it’s great and stick your head in the sand...
  4. 4. Ways of evaluating Rules/guidelines/patterns (‘heuristics’) Can be difficult to apply Use them in initial design Expert opinion Where do you get an unbiased expert from? Real users Best but hard work
  5. 5. Real users - usability testing Some users A thing for them to use They have to actually use it A test; questions, and results
  6. 6. Some users One subject Two subjects Group Representative users
  7. 7. A thing to use Finished system Competitors system Prototype/simulation
  8. 8. Prototypes/simulations Story boards Paper based Screen based (Photoshop, Flash) Single track/walk through Wizard of Oz
  9. 9. Paper based Photocopoier, spreadsheet, tipex, scissors, bluetac By hand or printouts from layout program Early and fast = incredible savings in effort ‘Paper psychology’
  10. 10. Good can be small and fast Big and slow can be bad. “Our site needs redesigning its rubbish, get 10 people into the usability lab and conduct in depth analyses of whats wrong with it…” Here’s an idea; hand sketch it, small group, ‘where would you click for more information?’.
  11. 11. They have to use it! Not about just asking a flatmate ‘is it user friendly?’ They will say ‘Yeah, what’s on TV?’. ‘Do you want to stay my friend, and does this look like I’ve put some work into it?’
  12. 12. Use it… Task oriented Don’t ask: Is it easy to use? Is it quick to use ? Do ask: How long does it take the user get an average ticket if they already know how to use the machine? When new users use it for the first time can they all get the ticket they require?
  13. 13. Quantitive Observations or questions ‘How many seconds to click it?’ ‘Does the site have events information?’ Can do manipulations with the data Vey focussed and might be measuring the wrong thing
  14. 14. Qualitative Interviews, chatty or open questions More difficult Data is less maleable Interesting
  15. 15. Questions Questions have to be: Planned Useful Neutral What to ask, how to ask it
  16. 16. What to ask - Life on Mars ‘Well, what do you think; is it easy and fast to use?’ Mars probe. ‘Well, what do you think; is there life on Mars?’ Break the big quesitons down into the detailed quesitons that we can actually get answers to.
  17. 17. Life on Mars... The National Research Council panel nicknamed the "weird life" committee. The group worries that scientists may be too Earthcentric when looking for extraterrestrial life. The problem for scientists is that "you only find what you're looking for," said Penn State University geosciences professor Katherine Freeman
  18. 18. How to ask it? Can be very tricky The Elderberry Experiments 60’s (more later)
  19. 19. Neutral questioning Societal and personal pressures Your best friend likes your design - its the Bradley effect (Tom Bradley 1982 mayor) ‘Do you mind if I smoke?’ Vs ‘Would you prefer it if I didn’t smoke’ Scots referendum. “Do you agree that…”
  20. 20. Capturing results - which method Method has to be appropriate Observation doing a task Metrics, talk through Questions in a form Questions in an interview
  21. 21. Capturing results Video them and ask them ‘did you see the help button on the page?’.... ‘Yes’ Simple closed questions use fill in forms with data capture.
  22. 22. Open/closed questions What do you think of the help function? Did you use the help function? I found the help function a) interesting b) boring… Be very careful with multiple choices
  23. 23. Audio and video Transcription/analysis is VERY time consuming Audio for interviews Video for visual oriented investigations
  24. 24. Interviews Already a large amount of good practice Clear Asset management Processing the recordings Presenting results
  25. 25. … and competitor analysis … is analysing your competitors to see how you stack up against them … is looking at what others are doing it’s not about copy and pasting bits here and there to create your own product. Not the ‘perfect solution’.
  26. 26. Conclusions Appropriate Considered Fast and small and many Slides on