Articles on Usability Research and Testing

Our continuous work on enterprise application design projects has allowed us to encounter, ponder, and solve many user interface problems. Here is a selection of some of the articles that we have written on the subject over the years.

Leveraging UI Design with Agile Development Feb 2003

Jim and Matt take a look at an approach to shorten development time, and create synergy between project cycles, by incorporating business intelligence and technical expertise into the user interface (UI) design process.

Managing Risk with Usability Testing Sep 2001

Aviva responds to the question: “Why should I pay attention to usability test results based on the observations of only a few users? Shouldn’t the tests be based on a random sample of the whole population of users, and be statistically valid?”

What is Section 508, and Why do You Need to Know About It? Jul 2001

Section 508 is poised to have an immense impact on all vendors of information technology, as well as on nearly all government agencies. Aviva takes a comprehensive look at it, and the information technology affected by Section 508.

Beating the Odds and Delivering Truly Usable Systems Jun 2001

How many times have you heard someone say, “GUI guidelines are mostly common sense”? If that’s the case, then why do we struggle with designing usable systems so much? Andrew demonstrates how to delivery usable solutions.

What Kind of Users Use Your GUI? May 2001

In Part 2 in a series on Getting to Know the “U” in GUI, Aviva looks at getting accurate and specific details about the characteristics of your target user base for setting the usability requirements of a graphical user interface.

Do You Know Who Your Users Are? Apr 2001

In Part 1 in a series on Getting to Know the “U” in GUI, Aviva looks at how to understand your users — their ways of working, the environments they work in, and the way they conceptualize the tasks automated by your system, to design a truly usable GUI.

Designing Successful Mobile Applications Mar 2001

As the wireless Internet becomes a reality, the end users strive to be more productive on this new breed of user interface. Jim sheds some light on the process of creating successful mobile interfaces.