Here are some interesting finds on UI/UX of the week!
Product Solutions Using Sketches. Hailing from writer Herbert Lui, this interesting article chronicles a series of authors and their theories directly related to the process of creating notes and sketches, as a method to productively generate solutions that are more effective and ultimately, plausible. This process — using sketches and notebooks, also enables an increased memory of the topic at hand, according to the authors quoted (and there are examples including from authors such as J.K. Rowling). Worth a read. Highlight of the article includes:
“In his book, Orbiting the Giant Hairball, author Gordon MacKenzie likened the creative process to one of a cow making milk. We can see a cow making milk when it’s hooked up to the milking machine, and we know that cows eat grass. But the actual part where the milk is being created remains invisible. There is an invisible part to making something new, the processes of which are obscured from physical sight by scale, certainly. But, parts of what we can see and feel, is felt through writing by hand.”
Design Improvements for Keyboard Accessibility. This webinar hailing from Smashing Magazine, focuses on Keyboard Accessibility (and Accessibility in general) and how an improved User Experience can dramatically amplify the response to those products. It’s a thorough interview with Designer Aaron Pearlman, who covers specific examples from his current professional experience, including details on the Design System established at his current organization, Deque. The transcript of the interview makes for a lengthy article, but one worth going through. Highlight of the article includes:
“So that’s one that you can do immediately. Check your color Palette, you want to do color contrast where I see that color contrast fails a lot is when people use the endless shades of gray to have various levels of first class, second class, third class elements and things like that. Just make sure that if it’s an interactive element that it’s a passing color contrast.”
Dark Patterns. Another interesting article from The Fast Company focused on Dark Patterns observed on Web Products and the current attempts to legislate accordingly in order to prevent this proliferation. I’ve listed recently other articles detailing Dark Patterns such as: Sneaking, Urgency, Obstruction, Misdirection, Scarcity, Forced Action and Social Proof, but the current article expands those and lists others such as Spam, Privacy Piracy, among others worth reading about. Highlight of the article includes:
“BAIT AND SWITCH. Software entices you to do one thing, but an undesirable thing happens instead. For Example: Microsoft was criticized in 2016 when users noticed that hitting the X on a software update pop-up would actually download an app instead of closing the window. FRIEND SPAM. A site asks for your email or social media permissions under false pretenses, then spams your contacts in a message claiming to be from you. For Example: LinkedIn settled a class action lawsuit in 2015 for spamming users’ entire email contact lists when they clicked an “add to your network” button while signing up.”