A prototype is worth a thousand meetings


I’m often in meetings where people are planning a change to a particular feature or making an enhancement to a website or app. Naturally there are sometimes differences of opinion about the best approach to take. That’s good because exploring … Read more

What the Joshua Bell subway story teaches about UX


There’s a well-known story about an experiment conducted by the Washington Post and world-famous violinist Joshua Bell. They decided to have Bell do some busking at the Washington D.C. Metro to see what kind of reaction he got. The story is somewhat … Read more

Be innovative with the content, but not with the UI

There’s a reason “don’t reinvent the wheel” is truth. Despite many centuries of science, technology and innovation, mankind just hasn’t come up with anything that works better than a wheel. In web design there are also things that shouldn’t be … Read more

Many web designers don’t believe these three things


I’ve done quite a bit of website usability testing with “ordinary” website users. By design, testing is done with people who are representative of a client’s audience and not the people who design the sites. Of course, that’s the point. The value … Read more

Three UX mistakes I see over, and over, and over

Man looking at mobile phone

In real estate, it’s location, location, location. In UX, the location is mobile, mobile, mobile. Mobile devices account for over half of all visits to most websites. Chances are you are reading this post on your phone. Various sources now put web … Read more

How to find known unknowns and unknown unknowns


In the infamous words of Donald Rumsfeld, there are known unknowns and unknown unknowns. When it comes to website or app design, testing with representative users (a.k.a. usability testing) can uncover both. Having conducted many, many user testing sessions over the past 10+ years I can … Read more

Twenty-two tools for 2022: Handy, helpful resources


We all have our go-to tools. Websites, platforms and applications we use to solve problems, perform tasks, acquire assets, streamline workflow and generally make our jobs easier. When I come across a helpful new tool, I’m always grateful. I thought … Read more

Improve UX by fixing these common typographic issues

old-fashioned metal type font

We spend a lot of time on our screens. Because of that, making text as readable as possible is extremely important for optimal user experience. This article gives easy-to-implement fixes for five common typographic problems seen on many websites: Line … Read more

The four-legged stool and why ux experts are critical

three legged stool

While I believe it’s important for everyone in an agency or corporate marketing/communications department to understand user experience fundamentals, there’s a critical place for UX specialists in the equation. Just like in the medical profession, it’s important for primary care … Read more

The Twelve Dictums of User Experience (UX) Design

Once upon a time, while strolling through the Japanese Gardens in Portland, Oregon, I made an incredible discovery. And all of a sudden around a bend in the path I discovered a stone tablet containing the lost “Twelve Dictums of … Read more

Try a Google Survey to Resolve Taxonomy Questions

In UX, using the right words to label things means the difference between success and failure. The wrong label can create user frustration that can hurt a business. Words matter — and sometimes the simplest words are the hardest. Recently, … Read more

Without prototyping, agile Is Much Less efficient

I’ve been involved in an agile development process for a new web application for the past several months. The agile process has been “by the book.” A scrum master conducts weekly sprints to review the tasks accomplished, get feedback and … Read more

Keep it stupid simple (SIC)

So the other day in a meeting, a client said he wanted things to be simple. That’s music to my UX ears of course, because simple is almost always best. When the client said this, he used the well-known euphemism … Read more

Ten of my favorite UX quotes

I hope you enjoy this short collection of user experience design quotations. These words of wisdom from sages and experts say more in a few words than I can say in a 500-word post! “Design is not just what it … Read more

To succeed, don’t overpromise and underdeliver

A few years from now, how many of us will remember Mike Bloomberg’s run for the Democratic presidential nomination? I’m guessing it’s something Mike would like us to forget. But like all failures, we can use Mike’s story to learn … Read more