Whitney Quesenbery and Frances Harris – Researching Daily Life

Sean Carmichael

January 23rd, 2015


[ Transcript Available ]

A Podcast for Everyone artwork

Accessibility is often focused on how to design and build digital products or physical spaces. But understanding the people with disabilities who will use those products is just as important. Enter ethnography and the importance of research that goes “face to face” with real people in the real world.

Frances Harris is a medical anthropologist who works with people with disabilities to explore the social, economic, and political contexts of their lives. Her projects look at how to make people’s lives and working situations easier and more accessible.

Frances joins Whitney Quesenbery for this episode of A Podcast for Everyone to talk about ways to understand the lives and how to design for people with disabilities. They talked about:

  • Conducting ethnographic research with people with disabilities
  • Understanding the complexity of people’s lives
  • The intersection of the outside observer and the inside perceptions
  • Privacy and independence and how they are perceived
  • Barriers to voting for people with disabilities

Frances Harris is a medical anthropologist at Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access (CATEA). Her current work investigates how better assistive technology and workplace accommodations can affect health, activity and participation in social and work activities. She received her PhD from the New School for Social Research.

Resources mentioned in this podcast

Get your UXIM spot at the lowest rate of $1,475

Lauren Cramer

January 22nd, 2015

Why wait and have to spend an additional $300 registering for the UX Immersion Mobile Conference in Salt Lake City, UT April 13-15 Register by Thursday, January 29 and you’ll lock yourself in at the lowest rate of $1,475.

You’ll choose two, daylong workshops from these UX rock stars

Jason Grigsby

Responsive Web Design

Jason Grigsby

Theresa Neil

Designing Native Apps

Theresa Neil

Chris Risdon

User Experience

Chris Risdon

Aaron Gustafson & Jenn Lukas

Adaptive Designs

Aaron Gustafson & Jenn Lukas

These UX luminaries will provide you with intensive, game-changing material that will challenge how you think and design for mobile.

UIEtips: Components Versus Patterns

Jared Spool

January 21st, 2015

In this week’s UIEtips, we reprint an article from Nathan Curtis. He shows us how patterns and components are different and what you should be building for your library.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

For example, consider countless video players proliferating needlessly throughout the sections and contexts of a website: embedded in a product spotlight, a different player in a different spotlight, unique players in lightboxes & popups, new players for content from the training group, etc. Built by different teams at different times, the designs all play video amid UI controls with inconsistent behavior and appearance.

Read the article: Components Versus Patterns

How do you ensure that your critiques are constructive? Tell us about it below.

Chris Risdon – Orchestrating Experiences for Complex Ecosystems

Sean Carmichael

January 21st, 2015


[ Transcript Available ]

Chris Risdon

User experience, as it has come to be known and understood, is generally associated with the digital space. Designers and developers working in concert to make a site, app, or digital product more usable and well designed. However, a user’s interaction with you as an organization isn’t necessarily confined to just your digital identity. This user experience design can be applied across all channels, such as a call center or physical location.

In Chris Risdon’s virtual seminar, Orchestrating Experience: Strategy And Design For Complex Product Ecosystems, he discusses what it takes to tackle complex systems. He explores the various touchpoints that a customer can interact with over time while engaging with your product or service.

There were many questions from our audience during the live seminar and Chris joins Adam Churchill to answer some of those in this podcast.

  • When considering touchpoints, are they able to work together with user stories?
  • How do you define the need for a digital versus a human touchpoint?
  • How can you get user stories for a product that doesn’t exist yet?
  • What approaches can you take for nonlinear experiences?
  • How long does this process take to map and arrive at consensus when dealing with multiple stakeholders?
  • If you have multiple experiences, how many maps do you need?
  • Can the re-engineering of the journey be a valid stage in getting to a service blueprint?
  • Have clients ever wanted to take the research and jump in before recommendations have been made?
  • Recorded: January, 2015
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Design Systems for Enterprise, a January 29 Virtual Seminar

Adam Churchill

January 19th, 2015

In our next virtual seminar, Cohesive Design Systems for Enterprise, Nathan Curtis demonstrates how to approach design systems and standards across products, teams, and organizations to produce cohesive user experiences at scale. You’ll gain an appreciation for the core of the design system and understand how to promote its value throughout your organization.

You’ll learn to:

  • Inspire designers to unite and share their work
  • Unify your design community within your organization
  • Illustrate how products relate & work together

If you want to learn how to navigate the system and bond your design community, this seminar is for you.

Best of all, you can save your spot for this seminar and still get in on the 6-month program (our next 8 seminars) for just $489.



It’s Alive! See the Lineup and Workshops for the UX Immersion Mobile Conference

Lauren Cramer

January 14th, 2015

6 Daylong Workshops from Top UX Experts

With more users accessing your sites and products via mobile, it’s critical that you provide a strongly integrated experience. At the UX Immersion Mobile Conference April 13-15, these UX luminaries will provide you with intensive, game-changing material that will challenge how you think about and design for mobile.


UIEtips: Design Decision Style

Jared Spool

January 14th, 2015

In this week’s UIEtips, we offer an original article from me, Jared Spool. In it I explore how to choose the best design style for your team.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

In our research, we’ve seen the most effective design teams are very deliberate about how they make decisions. They pick a decision-making approach early on, get everyone on board (including senior management), and then stick with it throughout the project.

The team’s Director of User Experience had seen me give a presentation about our research. (This one, in fact.) He now wanted his team to choose the right decision style for their future work. He invited me to help work through their choices.

Read the article: Figuring Out Your Design Decision Style

What design style works best for your team? Tell us about it below.

Your boss is talking about you. See what they’re saying

Lauren Cramer

January 14th, 2015

Setting: A note from your boss
When: Sometime in the near future


What a difference you’ve made to our team. I’m super impressed with what you learned and brought back to us from the UX Immersion Mobile Conference. Here’s just a sampling of what you’ve put into action.

  • Learned the new standards for responsive images and when to use them
  • Identified problems causing sluggish performance
  • Utilized interaction design patterns to build apps that feel intuitive
  • Figured out how to strategize with the content strategy team
  • Guided the QA team on design and assessing deliverable quality
  • Avoided common desktop tricks that create poor mobile UX
  • Converted markdown to HTML and enabled testing across multiple devices
  • Improved overall communication with developers

And there’s so much more valuable input you’ve provided. I’m glad we sent you to the UXIM Mobile Conference. It was worth every penny and more!

This could be the type of praise heaped on you if join us in Salt Lake City, April 13-15. Come explore what the conference has to offer.

Strengthen Your UX Skills with UI19 Videos

Lauren Cramer

January 12th, 2015

Strengthen Your UX Skills with 9 Videos from the UI19 Conference

Make you and your team better designers with these videos from nine UX experts for just $99. Hear these latest techniques, proven practices, and important UX ideas. You can even use these videos for team lunch and learns or individual training.

Watch the videos whenever you want, as often as you want for only $99. Get lifetime access for you and everyone on your team before the Jan. 29 rate increase and save $50.

Luke Wroblewski

Mobile design

with Luke Wroblewski

Steph Hay

Content-first design

with Steph Hay

Marc Stickdorn

Service-design thinking

with Mark Stickdorn

Stephen Anderson

Data visualization

with Stephen Anderson

Jared Spool

UX strategy

with Jared Spool

Kim Goodwin

User scenarios

with Kim Goodwin

Tim Brown

Designing with type

with Tim Brown

Dan Saffer


with Dan Saffer

UIEtips: Setting the Foundation for Meaningful Critiques—Goals, Principles, Personas and Scenarios

Jared Spool

January 7th, 2015

In this week’s UIEtips, we reprint an article from Adam Connor. According to Adam, doing critiques well and constructively is no easy task. Often designers feel picked on or that the feedback doesn’t give enough direction. A key concept to remember is that “critique is a form of analysis”. It’s a discussion on what is working well and what areas need improvement. To do this right you need goals. You need to ask if what you’re critiquing is reaching the objectives of the goals you and your team created. Adam discusses how to set the foundation of a meaningful critique by using goals, principles, personas, and scenarios.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

And this is where goals, principles, personas and scenarios come into play. Don’t look at them as just deliverables in a statement of work, I know many people often do. Look at them as a level of understanding. By providing your teammates or critics with this information you can set a foundation on which good dialogue can be built.

Read the article: Setting the Foundation for Meaningful Critiques – Goals, Principles, Personas and Scenarios

How do you ensure that your critiques are constructive? Tell us about it below.