Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Get it together

New technology changing UI to meet user needs ...

"If you’re designing for today’s interactive devices, you’ll need to understand your users’ needs as well as the latest technology. Sean Ashcroft shows you how to push all the right buttons…

When the web exploded into public consciousness in the mid-1990s, designers as much as any group helped drive its emergence. Back then, and for years to follow, the web became a digital plaything both for companies – many of whom had little idea what they should be using it for – and the designers themselves. The needs of lowly users barely registered on anyone’s radar.

The Dot-Com crash of 2000 may have wreaked start-up carnage, but it did little to change the methodologies behind professionally designed websites. “People were thinking short-term,” says Justin Cooke, managing director of leading UK web design agency Fortune Cookie. “They were trying to impress with bells and whistles; sites would look fantastic but would fall down when it came to using them. It was a classic case of brands designing for themselves rather than their customers.”

But things are changing, both technologically and socially. We’ve done the Web 1.0 thing. Now, we’re talking Web 2.0 – the buzz phrase that describes today’s richer, more compelling and more inclusive interactive experience.

Web 2.0 has been brought about by the rise of cheap broadband, the creation of a new generation of web technologies and applications, and, crucially, a change in attitudes by businesses and a shift in behaviour by the public. First, broadband.

“There’s a much larger number of people using the web via broadband,” says Fortune Cookie’s Cooke. “People have also become a good deal more savvy and confident with what they can do online, and it means you can deliver much more interactive and richer media online."    (Continued via Computer Arts)    [Usability Resources]

Get It Together - Usability, User Interface Design

Get It Together

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