A group of researchers from two European universities have evaluated if “what is beautiful is usable” is true in software, and they have concluded that “what is usable is beautiful.”
Many people who are new to Agile are confused about the place of UI and UX design on Agile teams. Previously many teams have tried keeping the work separate from the team or having the work done one sprint ahead. Recently, there has been more talk about welcoming UI and UX into Agile teams and Lean UX has been at the forefront.
On behalf of the InfoQ team, we are happy to announce our underwhelming first minor UI re-launch in our 5 year history. This re-launch is the first in a set of incremental changes that will end with a homepage re-launch later in the year, with your feedback. This first launch maintains the same look and feel but removes the left bar while expanding the header and footer.
Usability and Teamwork author and consultant Larry Constantine recently wrote two articles about the “Interfaith Marriage” between experience design and agile development. He examines the inherent conflict between the agile and UX perspectives and provides some concrete advice on how to integrate the two into a creative and productive union.
The adage "A picture is worth a thousand words", is sometimes forgotten in the Agile world. At least, this is what many designers on Agile teams believe. In some teams, designers are required to create small increments of the design and this process does not necessarily produce the best results. For other teams wireframes are considered to be bureaucracy which gets in the way of development.
Most programmers would strive hard to build a robust product with Agile practices and clean code. However, the focus on usability leaves much to be desired. This is despite the well known fact that a good user interface design can spell the difference between acceptance of a software product and its failure. If the end users do not like the UI then the product has little chance of success.
In the article entitled Apple vs. Microsoft – A Website Usability Study, Dmitry Fadeyev, co-founder of Pixelshell, compares Apple’s and Microsoft’s web sites from a usability perspective, and Apple is the winner. Scott Barnes, PM at Microsoft, agrees with him and suggests the problem is because various site sub-domains have different management.
In a presentation called "Ten Ways to Ensure RIA Failure", Anthony Franco, president of EffectiveUI, gives 10 pieces of advice to those who want their RIA project to fail. Gerd Waloszek, SAP AG, wrote "18 Golden Rules for Bad User Interfaces."
Gorilla Logic, Inc. has announced the first production release of FlexMonkey with version 1.0. FlexMonkey is an open source testing tool for Flex and AIR applications. FlexMonkey provides for the capture, replay, and verification of Flex user interface functionality.
This session addresses the abstract notion of simplicity, looks at why it is critical in modern UI design and answers questions: Why does simplicity matter? Is there a meaningful definition of simplicity? Why do design processes and good intentions undermine simplicity? What processes and techniques can software developers use to achieve simplicity?
MountainWest RubyConf took place from 13-14 March in Salt Lake City. All talks are available from Confreaks; we picked some interesting ones – Rails 3 and Merb, DSL design, usability on Rails, Vertebra – and give a coarse summary and some pointers into the talks.
In this presentation filmed during ThoughtWorks’ Quarterly Technology Briefing, Dave Robertson and John Johnston explain what the Agile and User Centered Design’s (UCD) common denominators are, common values being the most important one in their opinion.