Posts Written By Karen Bachmann
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Wish your users Happy Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day is about celebrating people we care about. It seems like a good holiday to focus on increasing our empathy and compassion for our customers and our users. Here are a few perspectives on why empathy is good for innovation and success as well as thoughts on cultivating compassion.

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Empathy fail: Mistakes UX designers make

In “The top mistakes UX designers make: the writeup,” Scott Berkun shares common errors about culture and attitude that designers and user researchers make. Sadly, most of the mistakes seemed to result when we fail to have empathy for our colleagues. The following summarizes just a few of Berkun’s points that I found particularly interesting […]

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Musings on 2012 design and tech predictions

This past month, I’ve been reading many of the prognostications for technology and design that proliferate in the technosphere at the beginning of each new year. As I have read various lists, I thought about how the success of these predictions is likely to involve integrating ideas from both areas. I consider a couple of themes […]

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Planning design projects to avoid opinion wars

Jared Spool shares good advice for design teams in his recent post “Putting An End To An Opinion War”. He observes that “Opinion wars kill design projects.” He shares two key ways to end an opinion war: using data to take decisions out of the realm of opinion appointing a final arbitrator These valuable tools […]

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Cultivating empathy with your users

User experience, at its best, is about empathy with the people who use the products and services we design. However, not all organizations start a user experience practice with empathy as a goal. Of the many options to cultivate empathy in your organization, consider how you talk about the practice of user experience design. This […]

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#IdeaNotebook: National Novel Writing Month

November is National Novel Writing Month, affectionately known as NaNoWriMo. This annual event is “a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing.” Started in 1999 by Chris Baty, the goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words, the equivalent of the average-sized novel, in 30 days. Sounds crazy? Baty acknowledges this in the first line of his […]

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MMOs: Creating a compelling user experience over time

Last weekend, I virtually attended BlizzCon 2011, a conference hosted by Blizzard Entertainment, the game developer behind Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo. A major focus of this annual conference is to provide insights and generate excitement about upcoming content planned for each franchise, but it is also a celebration of gamers, by gamers, and for gamers. […]

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Beware the slash: Distinguishing between UI and UX

A colleague and I were discussing challenges in explaining what we do as user experience practitioners. He mentioned a shared pet peeve, the slashing together of UI/UX. I see this most often in job postings, but it appears in technology news, blogs, and even how some people describe their work. The concern that my colleague […]

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Customizing Widget Tables in Axure

In UI design communication: General approaches and tips for Axure, I discussed the kind of content to include in a UI design specification and showed how to customize the information you annotate in Axure. This post discusses customizing the final specification. While this post describes using Axure to create a specification, the underlying organizational principles […]

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UX and Design Insights from Barcamp Tampa Bay 2011

I attended Barcamp Tampa Bay 2011 this past Saturday. Among many excellent sessions, two on user experience and design generated great interest. Justin Davis presented “5 User Experience Basics Everyone Should Know” to an overflowing room: People expect online interactions to follow social rules. Successful interactions provide appropriate feedback and engagement with a appropriately conversational tone.  (A […]

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