UI/UX Articles and Interesting Tidbits of the Week

Pedro Canhenha
3 min readFeb 18, 2024

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February//16//2024

Here are some interesting finds on UI/UX of the week!

1.

Refining Recruitment Processes in Research. Very relevant and pertinent article from Nikki Anderson-Stanier on the topic of recruiting the best suited participants for Research endeavors. It’s a particularly important topic, as the quality of the participants can either substantiate or completely invalidate the the quality of the study itself. And that becomes even more noteworthy when leveraging external recruiting firms to help with that process (such as Guidepoint, Coleman, ROI Rocket, and the list goes on). Well worth reading through. Highlight of the article includes:

“Combining open and closed questions helps ensure you get the best participants. For example, a 60/40 mix is safe, where 60% of questions are closed, and 40% are open-ended. Even better if you can get to 70% of questions closed and 30% open-ended. Open-ended questions help you see how a participant would answer in their own words without priming them to respond in a specific way. These questions are also helpful if you aren’t sure what information to include in a multiple-choice question. Adding an open-ended question to your screener survey can give clues on how much insight a participant will provide in your study. One-word responses, illogical rambling, or cagey answers can all indicate that a participant may provide a low return on investment.”

2.

Smooth Handoff Experiences. Great article from the Figma blog, this article from Lauren Andres, is indeed a push for Figma’s Dev mode, but more than that, is an important reminder of how fundamental the communication between Designers and Developers actually is, when it comes to the Implementation phase of a Design process. Dev Mode highlights in the article include aspects such as annotations, sharing a similar language, file organization, leveraging components, to name but a few. Worth browsing through and keeping some of these recommendations in mind. Highlight of the article includes:

“Annotations allow you to share the intent behind design decisions and highlight details you don’t want to get lost. If you’re not sure what those details should be, the best thing you can do is talk to your developers about what they’d find most helpful to call out. For example, my developer counterpart may not need me to annotate something like spacing or color if I’ve already defined them as variables. But it could be really helpful for me to annotate if I’m using a new component, if there’s a specific interaction that should happen that may not have been clear in a prototype, or if something should look slightly different on different platforms.”

3.

Accessibility and Data Visualizations. A cracking and thorough article from Kent Eisenhuth for The Smashing Magazine on the topic of accessibility in Data Visualizations. The author draws from considerable experiences at Google, and provides recommendations on how to best build powerful and accessible visualizations, which includes the integration of text and icons, the types of metaphors to leverage, even going as far as suggesting what can possibly inform the inspiration for some of those visualizations. Worth reading through. Highlight of the article includes:

“Color contrast and encodings also need to be considered when showing interactions like mouse hover, selection, and keyboard focus, like the examples in Figure 3.1. The same rules apply here. In this example, the hover, focus, and clicked state of each bar is delineated by elements that appear above and below the bar. As a result, these elements only need to achieve a 3:1 contrast ratio with the white background and not the bars themselves. Not only did this pattern test well in multiple usability studies, but it was also designed so that the states could overlap. For example, the hover state and selected state can appear simultaneously and still meet accessibility requirements.”

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