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Three Usability Talks to See at Big Design 2013

Three SpeakersOver the next few weeks, we are going to spotlight a “triple shot” of talks each week. In this first edition, let’s look at three cool talks in the Usability track.

– UX Research in a Multi-Screen Word by Jason Vasilas
– Usability and Innovation of James Bond Gadget by Ben Judy
– Collaging: Getting Answers to Questions You Don’t Ask by Kyle Soucy

All of these talks are as diverse as the speakers presented them.  At last year’s conference, Ben Judy had standing room only in his presentation.

Your first set of triple shots is below.  Enjoy!

UX Research in the New Multi-Screen World

Having entered a new multi-screen world, where users now regularly interact with websites via a multitude of devices/platforms, the UX Research game has changed. This presentation will compare the once straightforward Usability Testing methodology with the recent evolution of a Cross-Platform Evaluation methodology.

In this new methodology, we seek to answer the following questions: How are your users interacting with your site across platforms? Which features belong where? Does the overall user experience and impression of the brand hold up across platforms?

The presentation will also provide several guiding principles for both those developing and testing websites to be used across multiple platforms.

This talk is presented by Jason Vasilas, UX Researcher from Usability Sciences.

Collaging: Getting Answers to the Questions You Don’t Know to Ask

When conducting user research, we all know asking the right questions is just as important as how you ask them, but how do you even know what questions to ask? What if the discussion topic is extremely personal and private? How do you get a complete stranger to open up to you? There is a better way to conduct an in-depth interview and it doesn’t involve using a clipboard. Just imagine what you could discover if the participant’s answers weren’t limited to a predetermined set of questions.

Collaging is a needs-elicitation technique where participants select images to represent how they feel about a specific topic. Participants then explain the reason they chose each image to the moderator. The collage becomes an instrument for participants to express needs that they might not otherwise have been able to articulate. This information allows us to better understand the user’s world and how to design for it.

This presentation will explain the history of collaging and other projective techniques, what you can learn from it, when to use it, how to conduct it, and how to analyze the findings. A demonstration of a collaging exercise will also be performed with participants from the audience!

This talk is presented by Kyle Soucy, the Founding Principal of Usable Interface (a user research and usability testing consultancy, whose customers include Pfizer, McGraw-Hill, Concast, and HP.

Usability and Innovation in James Bond’s Gadgets

We will review the various spy gadgets used in James Bond movies over the last 51 years (23 Eon Productions films.) We’ll look at the usability and functionality of the gadgets, and how their design has influenced consumer electronics, military gear, and more. We will also consider what the Bond films teach us about innovation: are we merely innovating to solve problems we’ve made for ourselves — or are we practicing “(B)ig Innovation” to significantly improve the human condition? Along the way, we’ll have a lot of fun, immersing ourselves in Bond culture and analyzing relevant scenes from Agent 007’s films through the decades.

This talk is given by Ben Judy, who is passionate about understanding the needs of people who use technology so he can design better systems that work well for humans.  He watched his first James Bond movie when he was just 5 years old.

Get your tickets today!

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