Here are some interesting finds on UI/UX of the week!
Big Tech was already dominant. Has coronavirus made it unstoppable?
People often ask me what stocks I own. My investing advice is simple: I only invest in unregulated monopolies. They…
Big Tech’s Evolution. Great reflection and article courtesy of Fast Company, by way of author Professor Scott Galloway. The article is a reflection on how Big Tech in Silicon Valley, has managed to flourish, despite the Pandemic and general state of unrest throughout the world. It’s a very pertinent look at the core competences which underline some of these big organizations, and how our current environment, with its unexpected resolutions and outcomes, has benefited their tremendous growth. Well worth a read and a reflection. Highlight of the article includes:
“Beyond that, traditional media faces another challenge: the pandemic is highlighting their truth. Facebook and Google are simply more effective platforms for advertisers, and the truth will become increasingly apparent as even the biggest advertisers start cutting spend on traditional media. They won’t miss it. No other platform can offer the combination of scale and granularity that Facebook and Google provide. They are the most effective advertising vehicles in history and, at eight million advertisers, Facebook has the most elastic, self-healing customer base in business history.”
Weaving Web Accessibility With Usability - Smashing Magazine
In this article, Uri Paz explains how a site complying with accessibility guidelines may still present usability issues…
Accessibility and Usability. Another great article from Smashing Magazine and author Uri Paz, this time around on the topic of Accessibility and Usability. It’s an article that details a case study where the author and his team went through a process of testing the accessibility of a particular solution. As I’ve mentioned in previous newsletters, when aiming to do Usability Testing, always look for factors such as Learnability, Satisfaction, Efficiency, Memorability and Errors. The author discusses these topics and details the process by which the usability testing sessions were conducted, including testers selection. Highlight of the article includes:
“After the sessions, we wrote a report with our insights from the test: Some of the insights were related to bugs that we had to fix. For example, blind participants didn’t always find a particular button in the NVDA’s Elements List dialog, or sometimes they didn’t receive confirmation in the screen reader after clicking on the “Like” button. Some of the insights were related to the content. For example, some blind participants didn’t notice they were filling out the wrong form or wanted to scan an entire page quickly, but the strings in the aria-labels were too long. Some of the insights were related to visuals. For example, visually impaired participants who use magnifying software didn’t understand how to proceed when the next action appeared in a different area of the screen. Other times they didn’t notice the modal “close” icon — although its color was high contrast.”
An oral history of the hamburger icon (by the people who were there) | Inside Design Blog
When UX and product designer Geoff Alday got curious about who was responsible for the hamburger menu a few years ago…
The History of the Hamburger Icon. Hailing from the Invision Design Blog, this is a rewarding and educational article focused on the origins of the iconic Hamburger Icon, which has become a paradigm for many mobile centric solutions. The article details 1981, as the original usage of that icon in a Xerox Star Information System UI. It’s an interesting article, even more so since it features a conversation with the originator of that same icon, Mr. Norm Cox. Well worth a read. Highlight of the article includes:
“Hamburger menus… in 1981: Alday had struck gold. He went looking for the lead graphics guy on the Xerox Star, and found Norm Cox. “You’ve done your homework,” Norm Cox emailed back. “You’ve found the right guy.” The hamburger is ubiquitous. And last December, Cox got an unusual 67th birthday present when Reddit and McDonald’s teamed up to make the hamburger menus on both mobile sites look like actual burgers (if you clicked on it, you could place an order for a Big Mac). Which is to say, interest in the history of this little symbol with the satisfying name hasn’t waned, mostly because neither has its popularity. Everyone who’s ever scrambled to make a basic mobile-friendly website in recent times (i.e. me, literally doing exactly that on the day I was asked to write this piece) has probably used one. And every UX specialist worth their salt has also probably wondered when the big shots designing such big things as Chrome or Amazon will stop using them.”