People Interact

Blog about people-centered design by Lisa Chow and Sandra Sajonas.

Tag Archives: UX

Monthly Method Spotlight: Extreme User Interviews

Extreme User Interviews

What: Extreme user interviews are evaluations by individuals who are completely familiar or unfamiliar with a product or service.

When/why: Extremely familiar users can highlight key issues or problems. Extremely unfamiliar users may inspire insight for improvements.

How: Traditional question and response interview techniques can be used or a number of other UX methods mentioned in previous Monthly Method Spotlight posts.

Tips: Extreme user interviews are best done one-on-one to insure interviewees are not influencing each other in their responses.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for information.

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Digital Universities

Recently, I read an article in The Guardian discussing university libraries providing more accessible services and collections for the growing “digital native” student body. While I agree that university libraries need to shift their emphasis from physical library space to the digital realm, I do think they should keep UX in mind. Not just usability of the platforms but consider UX from the beginning; do “digital natives” even want everything online? Are there content and services they would prefer in analog?

Which brings me to another recent article bringing up Google’s project to digitize millions of university library books. This was an incredibly ambitious project that started in 2002 that even the Google gods couldn’t achieve. But why should they? Again I ask, do users even need or want digital access to all the university holdings?

Since library resources are finite, perhaps we should first start with some UX studies (surveys, focus groups, interviews, etc) of the current and incoming university students to see what they want and expect from their university library.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

Monthly Method Spotlight: Experience Prototype

Experience Prototype

What: Experience prototype is a simulation of the service experience.

When/why: By asking participants to simulate the experience, designers can look for any unanticipated issues or needs that arise during the simulation.

How: Quickly prototype a concept using available materials & ask participants to try it out.

Tips: Create your prototype quickly & don’t worry about it being perfect. The idea is that you will improve and build upon your prototype. See our other posts on prototyping.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for information.

One Month Later and Yarn Bombing at METRO Relaunch

We visited METRO’s headquarters last week (a month later since our METRO UX Meetup) and it was great to see the implementation of some ideas and suggestions from the hands-on UX study (including the addition of plants and METRO signage on door).

We were there to capture the Fiber Arts Group‘s yarn bombing project (plus origami cranes made from colorful origami paper and discarded library books, inspired by METRO’s post-it note bird and cranes on glass surface), which was timed to coincide with METRO’s relaunch party that evening. Check out the photos below.

metro-yarn-bombing

metro-cranes

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The Fiber Arts Group meets weekly at the Central Library in Brooklyn on Wednesday evenings.

 

METRO UX Meetup Recap: Hands-On UX of METRO’s New Headquarters

Earlier this week, we had our first UX in Libraries Meetup at METRO’s new headquarters located at 599 11th Avenue near the Intrepid.

post-it-note-bird

We did a semi-structured hands-on UX study of the new space using various methods. Some METRO staff members were on hand and available for guided tours, interviews, etc.

metro-ux-groups

The group came up with some great ideas, suggestions, and recommendations based on initial findings. It was a pretty productive and awesome meeting, thanks to METRO and the participants.

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Some recurring themes that surfaced are:

  • Welcoming
  • Human touch
  • Togetherness

METRO is doing exactly what we work with libraries and nonprofits on – implementing creative solutions to effectively improve and enhance individual and organizational performance by focusing on the human element. Kudos to METRO for having a welcoming space that promotes togetherness with a human touch.

So what’s next? Ideas include possibly doing another hands-on UX meeting down the road when other spaces are set up and adding subtle elements of serendipity that complement the origami cranes and the post-it note bird. Stay tuned.

And lastly, thanks again METRO for the opportunity. We look forward to using the new spaces in its various iterations for future UX meetups. Be sure to check out METRO’s new headquarters, if you haven’t already.