Presented at Software Test Professionals, New Orleans 2012;
Today’s web-based applications (WebApps) containing complex business logic and which are sometimes critical to operating the business, now must have an increased focus on usability as well as the newer and broader term, user experience. Especially with SaaS based business models where users can switch applications at a heartbeat and pay by the month (or even a free trial), both usability and user experience become paramount as there is no up-front investment forcing a user to stay. The ISO 25010 standard describes a model for general usage in specifying and evaluating software quality requirements, one of which is usability, but there are no models or formal definitions for user experience, nor its relation to usability. For usability, ISO 25010 is intended as a general guideline to be adapted based on a specific context and lacks implementation specifics. UX, on the other hand, does not have any formal standard definition, although some models have been developed regarding its elements. Models and research have been used mostly for the purpose of understanding, rather than evaluating improvements. In this session, we draw relationships between usability and user experience and explore measurement and evaluation methods that can be used as the first step toward improvement.