This site has been inactive for quite a while, partly because I have a new job but also because I have been working away in the background. Previously the entire site was hand coded by myself, which while a good thing, my workflow for creating a content was just too time consuming. So I have been investigating various alternatives and have gone for Statamic, database free CMS. A special thanks to their support team who helped me overcome a few php versioning issues I was having. So my workflow should now be much shorter leading to, hopefully, much more actvity!
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What can you expect now this new site is in place?
Working as a User Experience professional, you may find yourself in a positon where you need to convince colleagues why they should care about the User Experience of your products. This article identifies three reasons why, now more than ever, User Experience should be an integral part of your project lifecycle.
Users expect a far more intuitive/engaging experience than in the past. Look back at technology from even 5 years ago and see how far we have come. In the past you may not be happy about it, but you would accept the fact that you will have to read reams of documentation before you can start using your shiny new toy. Now back to the present day and look at the level we are approaching. Open your Kindle fire and all you have is one page of instruction on how to plug the device in. It already knows who you are and is linked to your account, ready to go out the box.
Gone are the days when you knew that your users would be accessing your service from a desktop machine, with 90% of the users having a resolution of 1024x768. Todays web is accessed through many different mediums: smartphones, interactive TVs, desktops, laptops, netbooks, tablets. Even the humble desktop now has some much variation in the size and resolution of monitors available. So which of these do you cater for? If you have a good understanding of your user you should know where to concentrate your efforts.
The web is ever evolving, the web of today is almost unrecognisable to the web of 10-15 years ago. Web applications now have access to much greater processing power and technology. Browsers can now perform tasks that in the past would have been impossible or required a native application. With this new found power comes new opportunities, but with those opportunities come risks. One of the main risks being the thought process: We can do anything, so lets give them everything. Just because web applications can now do so much doesnt mean it should. Keep your app functionality focussed, front load your design time, iterate and test with end users and you are much more likely to get it right.
Photo credit to: pasukaru76 return
Considering User Experience throughout your design and development lifecycle not only helps deliver an improved end product. It can also help deal with changing user expectations; the wide variety of platforms that the web is now delivered through; Help manage the power available to web applications by keeping them focussed and on goal.