Empathy for Grannie: Latest Trends in Research for Older Users
In 2013, The Nielsen Norman group published an article that stated “Users aged 65 and older are 43% slower at using websites than users aged 21–55.” It is a nice academic review of what to look out for when designing for THOSE older people. In 2019 Don Norman turned 83 and his approach to design for seniors got more personal. He identified that design was actually hostile to older users. This talk will do a brief review of what to pay attention to when designing for older people, but will focus on methods that you can use to generate empathy for Grannie and her cohorts with you own designs. We will discuss suggestions for creating personas, conducting focus groups and usability testing with this age group. We will cover a few findings in the areas of learnability, memory and the use of mobile devices. Don’t wait until you turn 83 to discover that your company has been using 5 pt. grey text on the underside of its boxes and you need a magnifying glass to read it.