Changing user experience starting with changing one design principle at a time.

Week 5 Reading Reflection

Cooper, Alan, Reimann, Robert, and Cronin, David. “Chapter 15, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24” About Face: The Essential of Interaction Design 3 Wiley Publishing, Inc.: Indianapolis, Indiana, 2007.

After weeks of study on the topics of user experience design, it is time for us connect the principles to real practices. How can we identify issue in the over design of a product, we will trying to attack one small part at a time. In the last week’s post I have use the example of Google search engine. First, Google search included many design principles to create the best user experience for user around the world. Second, I found all the other design examples from Google. Here we have to ask ourselves, what are we storing and how are we retrieving it later in the most efficient way? Cooper (2007, page 325) used a great example in real life, when we need to find a book in the library, we will need to find a book index number from a liberator or a computer. And find the floor and row of shelves, if the book it is not misplace, there you have it. If you want to find a book in a big campus like Purdue, you will also need to know which library the book is located.

Book Index
Here is a book index from the Purdue Library

We go through these kind of task daily, find a item in the grocery store, make a payment in the right university office, etc. When we understand this is the task which every user want to accomplish, we will move this mental model to searching in the digital world but with something different in mind. As a designer we are following the natural mental process but need to assume the user cannot remember all the detail information about a product or information they want to find. Grouping same attribute information into one category is a good way to help user locate information must quicker. For instant, if you want to search a file in MAC OX, you can illuminate the different attributes until you found the file, even you don’t remember the file name. Let do a real comparison between MAC OS Search to Window 7 Search.

MAC OS File Searching


Window 7 File Search
Another example will be, amazon gives customer different options to sort, refine their search to enable the customer find what they need in second. And one more great benefit to customer is now everyone to able to price match same products from different store.
Connect principles to practices, link more example from the book to the real world, I cannot wait to write more and read about your opinions.


Author: eddyzhuo

Think about your day, seen like brake into two part: online -- offline. And then think about your time when you are shopping in the grocery stores, you will look what is better with a better price. Same thing apply to surfing online, we should be able to identify what is good and bad website, use good product that worthy your time, instead only being passive. Hello my name is Eddy, a master of computer graphics technology student in Purdue University. Let us use the web, think about it, discuss on it, and create a better and friendlier user experience WWW.

One thought on “Changing user experience starting with changing one design principle at a time.”

  1. Good point about understanding find and search mental models and applying them to interfaces. Also good point about enabling search and sort by various criteria – some criteria will make sense to some users, others – to other users.

    However, designing information search in ways that resemble physical space too closely (one item in one place and one place only) is unnecessarily limiting. The ideas Cooper writes about on overcoming physical limitations are very important.

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