My Gmail account has been down this afternoon. We made the switch to use GMAIL web services as the primary funnel for all our emails due to the superior spam filters and improved AJAX (Desktop) experience. Now…it’s down we have no access to emails. I’m seeing several panic posts around the blogosphere as this seems to be a widespread outage. Essentially GMAIL has become an essential utility for us like power, water, etc….however in this case we don’t have a backup…
Information and feature overload is reducing user productivity and effectiveness. Here’s my latest article from our research at Classic System Solutions, Inc. I discuss the popular complex navigation patterns and techniques aimed at creating a more usable experience.
Here’s a few tools we find useful on projects to help promote
and ensure usability:
Color Challenged Developers?
Here’s a great tool to help your team select color a combination with aesthetic appeal and good usability.
Check out > ColorSchemer Studio
Need fast, interactive prototypes?
Develop fast interactive prototypes and generate a word doc for the boss and html prototypes for the users. The latest release can simulate AJAX interactions.
Check out > Axure Rapid Prototyper
Spending too much time copying that whiteboard user interface design?
This purpose built software cleans the glare and yellow from the photos you take of your whiteboard meeting notes and outputs an easy to read copy (better than those copy whiteboards!).
Check out > Whiteboard Photo
Here’s an updated Ajax charting library to bring your static charts to life without causing excessive screen refresh issues.
ComponentArt Charting Gallery
Ever since Google Finance released their Flash based interactive stock charts, the bar has been raised on how to provide more useful ‘Why” information vs. the traditional “Drilldown” to see more data approach.
Yahoo! Design Patterns Update: “The Yahoo! Design Pattern Library was updated today with new patterns for creating visual transitions, invitations, and page grids. In addition, the team has provided code libraries for windowing control, menus, auto-completion, CSS Fonts/Reset (which provide an optimal font-sizing strategy that normalizes browser-supplied CSS defaults), and Page grids (which provide seven basic wireframes and components taht together offer more than 100 page layouts — all of which scale up in size when the user applies browser-level font zooming).If all that wasn’t enough, Bill Scott (the hardest working man in rich internet applications today) provides a detailed look at the design considerations behind the invitation design pattern. Enjoy!Tags: patterns, UI components, yahoo, rias”
Delivering on the vision….
It all started a few years ago with the CIO vision… ‘We need a 360 degree view of the customer’. If your company is typical of most out there, you have spent the last few years integrating disparate data sources to transform the executive vision into a reality for your internal users.
How are you doing? Have you delivered on the promise? Are your users more empowered, clients ecstatic and CIO beaming in the ambiance of increased sales and improved customer service? If that reality is still a few years away, no worries, you are not alone. Many companies have found that building the foundation for delivering web enterprise applications is more complex than planned and are just coming online with solid architectures to deliver on the original goal. The good news is Web 2.0 user interface design is poised to provide truly useful methods of delivering complex data in ways that will deliver on the vision.
What is Web 2.0?