Language of Software – sketchnotes and slides

Des Traynor spoke to lots of developers from both the Sanger Institute and the EBI about content strategy for application developers. Read on for sketchnotes, slides and a note on “micro copy”.

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Upcoming talks, autumn 2011

We have three great events to go before Christmas (hey, they’re already selling Christmas puddings in the shops!).

October 17, 14h00 -15h00, Webinar: “Principles of Web Navigation: Advanced Design Techniques” (one hour) – James Kalbach

November 14, 15h00 – 16h00, Talk: “The language of software: the role of content strategy in software development” – Des Traynor

December 1, 15h00 – 16h00, Talk: “Secrets of Simplicity” – Giles Colborne

The webinar will be in C209 (near Sanger reception), and the talks will be in M203 (next to the restaurant).

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UX design and return on investment (ROI)

In the world of publicly-funded scientific research, we don’t often think about commerce and transactions, because we’re not selling anything. However, there is obviously money involved somewhere (ask any PI!).

Someone has paid for those data to be produced, and someone has funded the project to create an interface to make those data available and usable.

I am interested in applying commercial thinking to our situation, even if we never talk about customers, conversions and profit, as some of you might have noticed when I work with you. It is worth considering the ROI, or return on investment, of applying user experience (UX) design practices to scientific projects (where a web app or piece of software is the main, tangible product).

Part of Human Factors International's ROI of UX Design poste

With that in mind, have a look at this short video explaining why it is worth including UX or user-centred design principles in the project development:

Aiming to clearly define project requirements early on, to communicate well, and to sort out and align stakeholder politics can pay dividends for the project as a whole.

If you want to know more about how to apply UX design practices to your project, keep an eye on the articles that appear on this blog, contact me or Jenny Cham, and we will help you out however we can.

Notes from UXLX talks

UXLX logoLast week, I was fortunate enough to be in lovely Lisbon for the UXLX conference.

You can download my notes from the day of talks at UXLX

The event brought together people involved in the field of user experience design for three days of workshops and talks, and I found it to be a really stimulating and exciting conference to attend. I was able to get to four workshops, where I learned lots of good stuff, listened to some great talks, and met some cool people. I really hope I can go again in 2011!

All of the talks were on the third day, and I have written up my scribbles to share with you, dear readers. I will deal with the workshop notes as soon as I can.

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Desire paths and routes to data

Desire paths are the worn tracks you sometimes see, cutting across a patch of grass, or through a hedge, where people frequently take a shortcut, rather than the designated path.

In terms of design and usability, perhaps we could begin to think about this when we create websites and applications. If we learn from what users actually do, we can aim to create better paths to data and information, and thus a better user experience.

Frozen desire lines

Desire paths in Oslo, Norway

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