Jared M. Spool

Jared SpoolJared M. Spool is the founder of User Interface Engineering and a co-founder of Center Centre.

If you’ve ever seen Jared speak about user experience design, you know that he’s probably the most effective and knowledgeable communicator on the subject today. He’s been working in the field of usability and experience design since 1978, before the term “usability” was ever associated with computers.

He is also the conference chair and keynote speaker at the annual UI Conference and UX Immersion Conference, and manages to squeeze in a fair amount of writing time. He is author of the book Web Usability: A Designer’s Guide and co-author of Web Anatomy: Interaction Design Frameworks that Work. You can find his writing at uie.com and follow his adventures on the twitters at @jmspool.

Jared's posts:

Improve Your UX Skills with These 9 Videos

December 29th, 2015 by Jared Spool

Spark Productive Change in Your Organization with UI20 OnDemand

UI20 OnDemand brings best practices and cutting edge techniques to help you understand your users’ needs and create experiences that engage and delight.

Nine UX experts share the latest techniques, proven practices and important UX ideas. Use these videos for team lunch and learns or individual training.

Pay just $99 for lifetime access to all nine videos, and if you’re part of a team, everyone gets access.

Kim Goodwin
Marc Stickdorn

Service Design

Marc Stickdorn

Erika Hall
Jeff Gothelf

Lean UX

Jeff Gothelf

Nathan Curtis

Design Systems

Nathan Curtis

Steph Hay
Jenn Lukas

Mastering CSS

Jenn Lukas

Bruce McCarthy

UX Roadmaps

Bruce McCarthy

Price increases January 24, 2016.

Use your remaining 2015 UX budget dollars for…

December 18th, 2015 by Jared Spool

We’re already thinking about 2016, and know you are too. Get your team on the same page with proven UX methods and tools. Got some leftover 2015 budget money? Here’s where you can put it to use:

 

Got $249?

UIE's All You Can Learn Library.  Watch, listen, and learn from the world's best UX experts.

Visit the All You Can Learn Library for hundreds of UX presentations on relevant and timely topics—watch, listen & learn. For $249 Get an Entire Year’s Access.

 

Got $1,475?

UX Immersion: Interactions.  A UX Conference Unlike Any Other.  April 18-20, 2016 in San Diego, CA.

Get our lowest price for UX Immersion: Interactions, plus you’ll receive an Amazon ECHO. If you’re going to be competitive, your products & services better have a great experience. This conference will show you how. For $1,475 Save Your Spot.

 

Got $7,500?

Jared Spool Visits You.  Have Jared give his world-famous talks right at your office

Gain the competitive advantage of experience design by having Jared Spool engage with members of your organization. Take the first step and start the conversation, because Jared’s calendar does fill up fast. Starting at $7,500, Jared Spool will come to you.

UIE Article: Extraordinarily Radical Redesign Strategies

December 16th, 2015 by Jared Spool

In today’s article, I discuss three radical redesign approach strategies.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

It’s your most loyal customers who will hate your flip-the-switch redesign the most. Designers are quick to declare, “Users hate change.” But that’s not it at all.

Your loyal users have invested a lot over the years mastering your current design, to the point where they are fast and efficient with everything they need to do. When you change it, even with something you want to label “new and improved,” all of that investment is flushed down the drain.

Read the article: Extraordinarily Radical Redesign Strategies.

What strategy have you put in place when planning a redesign? Tell us about it below.

UXImmersion: Interactions – Get Exposed To The Newest Interaction Design Practices.

December 16th, 2015 by Jared Spool

Interaction design has never been more important.

New practices and techniques meet theory and expertise at the UX Immersion: Interactions conference in San Diego, CA, April 18–20, 2016. Move beyond inspiration and immerse yourself.

Six industry leaders teach master-grade workshops on groundbreaking interaction design skills you won’t find anywhere else plus a keynote from me.

 

UIE Article: Goal Challenges and Tool Challenges

December 9th, 2015 by Jared Spool

In today’s article, I discuss how to design for two types of challenges.  If users are distracted by controlling the interface, they can’t pay attention to the thing they came to do.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Two Dots’ designers also needed to put in tools to control the play of the game, such as changing levels, turning off the sound or music, and adjusting colors for color blind players. These tools must be easy to find and use, not a challenge like the game play itself.

Game designers are experts at ensuring goal challenges remain in the users’ focus, while ensuring that tool challenges are minimized or eliminated. By studying how the best game designers have made these trade-offs, we can learn how to improve the productivity tools we’re designing.

Read the article Goal Challenges and Tool Challenges

What are your thoughts on goal and tool challenges? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: For an Edge Condition, Seeing the Problem is a Problem

December 2nd, 2015 by Jared Spool

In today’s article, I discuss how to design a great experience even while troubleshooting.  We must design for the solution, not the problem.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

If they understood the situation, they could interview the mechanics, pilots, gate agents, and operations personnel after the fact. However, that presents its own problems. It’s hard to ask the right questions to get to a deep understanding when you don’t know what questions you need to ask.

The old tried-and-true methods of observation and interviews won’t cut it. We need something else to get us the deep insights that will tell us how to design for complex independent systems dealing with infrequent, edge condition issues.

Read the article For an Edge Condition, Seeing The Problem is a Problem

What are your thoughts on designing for solutions? Tell us about it below.

UX Immersion: Interactions is the One Conference You Absolutely Need to Attend in 2016

November 20th, 2015 by Jared Spool

I’m betting you’ve hit one of these challenges:

  • Designing for larger and more varied audiences than ever before
  • Working more closely with non-designers, stakeholders, and influencers
  • Dealing with applications so complex that your users are practically collapsing under the chaos
  • Struggling to integrate design into your organization’s strategic direction

I’ve put together this great UX conference to focus on these challenges and their solutions. You’ll gain actionable insights on:

  • simplifying complex applications
  • advanced research methods aimed directly at the problems of scale
  • solid techniques for engaging design collaboration across your organization

That’s just a small portion of the techniques and practices you’ll bring home.

You need to look at what we’ve created to see why I am so excited about what will easily be the best design conference of the year.

UIE Article – Bending the Protocols: Useful Variations on Usability Tests

November 18th, 2015 by Jared Spool

I remember my first usability test like it was yesterday, even though it was actually more than 30 years ago. I sat in the newly built lab (first of its kind) and watched the participant through the silvered glass as they struggled with the design we were working on. What I didn’t know then was how far we’d take this basic technique and how important it would become to great design.

Now I look at the basic usability test protocol like it’s a column of wet clay, ready to be molded into exactly the research instrument we need. Over the years, we’ve invented, borrowed, and stolen different variations, all to help us better understand our users and what we’re designing.

In today’s article, I talk about five of our favorite variations. You’ll see how we bend and twist basic techniques to discover new things about what we’re designing.

Read the article: Bending the Protocols: Useful Variations on Usability Tests

What are your favorite variations on usability testing? Tell us below what you’re doing.

UIE Article: Your Job Ad – The Start of a Great Hiring Experience

November 11th, 2015 by Jared Spool

In today’s article, I tackle the pitfalls and benefits of job ads: to design a great hiring experience, we need to understand the goal of the job.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

For many designer candidates, your ad is the first thing they’ll see. It’s the only exposure they’ll have to your organization until after they’ve applied and you’ve called them back. Everything in your ad needs to convince a candidate to apply.

No, that’s not quite right. Not just apply. It needs to convince them that they want to work for you. It needs to convince them to put your job as their first choice. A great job ad goes way beyond just encouraging a potential new hire to apply. It inspires and creates desire to be part of your team.

Read the article Your Job Ad: The Start of a Great Hiring Experience.

What do you think talented designers look for when they’re considering a new position? Tell us about it below.

UIE Article: Designing without a Designer

November 4th, 2015 by Jared Spool

In today’s article, I discuss how designers can benefit your team in more ways than just delivering a design.

Here’s an excerpt from the article:

Those folks who learn how to do a good enough job have become consciously competent. They can make good results happen most of the time, though they often don’t know the underlying theory as to why. (Think of someone who can follow a baking recipe and create great cupcakes, but doesn’t understand the chemistry of baking.)

Read the article Designing without a Designer.

What challenges has your team faced in reaching conscious competence with their design skills? Tell us about it below.