The future of social app interface design Alvin Woon Plurk, Design lead
Adaptive UI (AUI) serving different set of content to different type of users based on cognitive styles, usage context, click patterns and analytic data
improve data relevancy, interestingness and freshness increased accuracy lead to better user satisfaction. adjusts dynamically to fit the user profile and usage context suggest new things/features that user might not have known yet. Adaptive UI can
cognitive style is not set in stone at all times. User behavior changes. Coupled that with unreliable demographic data, it may lead you to an incorrect analysis. can be embarrassing if prediction is inaccurate. require intensive testing on UI. One bug in UI can be replicated across 5 sets of different content. but t o what extent should the UI be adaptive?
i18n -proof interface internationalization and localization and their impact on UI design.
Why it's important? - traffic/more diverse userbase (no more traffic dive on US holidays >_< ) - because not everyone speaks our language - inherent beauty of the web, low barrier of entry - warm fuzzy feeling
Impact of i18n on UI design <ul><ul><li>css image replacement? bye </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>shiny image buttons with shopped font? bye </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>fixed size graphic elements? bye </li></ul></ul>Q: what's the difference between English and Hebrew/Arabic, and Japanese, Chinese?
More interesting headaches... <ul><ul><li>some languages read from right to left (Arabic, Hebrew) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>some languages are gender specific (male and female speak differently) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Japanese word order is Subject-Object-Verb </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the same language can have different dialect and compositions of characters (chinese traditional/cantonese/simplified) </li></ul></ul>
Geo-feature adapting location based feature into your social UI
Geo-features UI - complement well with i18n and mobile/wifi technologies - greatly improve data relevancy - not only for dating/traveling social sites anymore. video sharing, restaurant reviews, book swapping site. - many social sites still put geo feature in an isolated page - starting to see a trend where geo feature is integrated deep within the system. Friends search, browse content, same interest based on location, mobile and affiliation info.
Geo-features in the context of social web application is.... displaying relevant information based on the grouping of subjects from the same location. Distance proximity doesnt matter much here. You are working on a social site, not an informational/mapping site. Show big avatars of interesting people from the same location as me. Display it in the layout that fits your current design. Don't deviate 180 degree from your design just because you have to fit in a map.
User-centred design limitation of UCD/HCD on designing for social web and emergence of alternative design philosophies
UCD goodies - Understanding the needs of users helps humanize the process and keeps your project in check with their goals. - UCD methods such as card-sorting, ethnography, focus group, paper prototyping are widely used to minimize guesswork and help us understand user's cognitive style. - make it easier for user to recover from mistakes.
The bad - focus upon individual people (or groups) might improve things for them at the cost of making it worse for others. - User research is expensive, unreliable and time consuming - does not go well agile development style - lead to design tendency that tries to fix human mistakes, instead of trying to let user accomplish a task.
ZOMG, are you saying users are not important?!
Then come Activity Centred Design - activity has purpose. user has behavior. Purpose is more predictable than behavior. - UI evolves over time to facilitate user activity. Do iterations with the help of analytic and cognitive data from users. - active observation vs passive observation - solve problems instead of user mistakes