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Opinions, ideas and new thinking

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Showing users how they shaped an outcome

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Showing users how they shaped an outcome

I opened up Google Drive this morning and there it was: a little pop-up telling me the ‘Incoming’ menu item had been changed to ‘Shared with me’. ‘Incoming’ had been a minor irritation for me personally, and I know of several others who have experienced varying degrees of confusion over this since Google introduced the concept. I found myself pleased to see the change, and all the more so because Google had taken the time to tell me it had been changed based on user feedback: ‘You spoke, we…

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The demise of smarter rectangles

When a man like Sundar Pichai, responsible for the platform powering the majority of the world’s mobile devices, speaks up, one does well to take note. Android is understood today in the context of how well it performs on the little slabs of plastic, metal and glass we call smartphones and tablets. It is easy to mistake these devices, Android and otherwise, as an industry in themselves – the ‘mobile industry’ which will gather for its annual jamboree in Barcelona next week.

However, in hi…

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Video: Arun Vasudeva’s #mexsession on building multiple experiences within content consumption

As media evolves into a changing, dynamic entity accessed from numerous different touchpoints, the challenges of experience design multiply. Arun Vasudeva’s session draws on his experimental work with one of the world’s largest publishers to combine media formats, and push beyond to create wholly new digital experiences where users can shift between modes of behaviour – from communicating to exploring – while remaining within the same overall content consumption …

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Video: Giles Colborne’s #mexsession on illusions of efficiency in UX

Giles Colborne’s March 2014 talk at MEX challenges preconceived notions about time and efficiency. Drawing on years of experience leading cx partners, the UX agency he founded, Giles’ explores a broad and compelling array of references to show how users think about speed and latency. He goes on to explain the advantages of different methods for tracking these often illogical user reactions and turning them into delightful customer experiences, grounded in the r…

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Video: Rich Clayton’s #mexsession on UX at the intersection of physical & digital

When Rich Clayton took on the role of Creative Director at Loaded Magazine, it was a publication adrift – in need of both a new content direction to reflect the evolving tastes of its community and a new delivery experience to reflect the multi-touchpoint way in which readers now consume across physical and digital channels. In this 30 minute video recorded at MEX in March 2014, Clayton shares how his background in user-centred design helped chart a new course f…

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Living with a Moto 360 smartwatch and thoughts on a wearable future

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Living with a Moto 360 smartwatch and thoughts on a wearable future

I first wrote about the Moto 360 in December 2014. Suffice to say I was not impressed:

“The Moto 360 looked very different in real life to the media I’ve seen online. Without any attempt to show it in context, or market it as a luxury item, seeing it in a shop felt like a disappointment. My gut feeling is that these need to be sold like watches and jewellery, not consumer electronics.”

However, I decided the only way to really understand the user experience was to live with a Mo…

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What’s your answer to the big #mex15 UX question?

What’s the most important user experience innovation the tech industry should focus on today to change the way humans’ use digital 4 years from now?

Please post your reply as a comment below (jump to comments section).

Every year I ask my network a question like this to find out what’s your top priority for digital user experience. It helps me keep MEX, the journal & conference for improving user experience, on the right track in delivering our programme of education and new th…

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UI lessons from urban design

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UI lessons from urban design

Which part of this street is the most dangerous for the average pedestrian?

  1. The area with the bold, diagonal red lines
  2. The parallel, double yellow lines
  3. Or the path marked by the faint, blue dashed lines

The blue dashed lines mark out a slightly twisting cycle path which cuts across a pedestrianised shopping area. It can be joined from the road without going up a curb or through a barrier, meaning cyclists can hit the path at speed.

I’m an enthusiastic cyclist myse…

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The extraordinary choices of the Blackberry Passport

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The extraordinary choices of the Blackberry Passport

There’s nothing else like it: blocky and solid, with a row of physical keys beneath a square display. It is because of these unusual characteristics that I knew I had to try the Blackberry Passport for myself. I wanted to understand whether, by pursuing an extraordinarily different design strategy, Blackberry was actually enabling any extraordinarily different user experiences.

First and foremost, let me say this: it’s not too big.

This question is asked by almost everyone who sees a …

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User story: early learning the hidden costs of tablets

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User story: early learning the hidden costs of tablets

“Are you playing a game?” I looked up to find a boy of about 6 years old, in his school uniform and still wearing his rucksack, reaching out towards my iPad. His sister, a year or two younger, looked on with equal curiosity. I’d been absorbed in my work, balancing the iPad on my knees and tuning out the mayhem of the early evening commuter train on the last Friday before Christmas.

The MEX series of user stories has focused so far on situations where I could be a passive, unnoticed obser…

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