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9 posts from March 2010

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Designing with the Elements of Play

The elements of play, such as points, levels, and challenges, are powerful for application development beyond games. But, as Stephen Anderson correctly points out, it's not the game elements themselves, but the principles behind them. Once we master the principles, we can see the types of improvements that LinkedIn, Sabre Town, ThinkGeek, and CoffeeCup have seen.

via www.uie.com

On the flip side, we also have to be mindful of game play in a negative manner. Sites that rank users need to look for ways in which people can game the system and cause frustration among other users and even revenue loss for the company.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Rich Internet Application Screen Design | UX Magazine

User Goal Structure

Designing a rich Internet application (RIA) can test even an experienced design team. The hardest challenge is to blend Web and desktop paradigms to create a responsive and intuitive experience. Some paradigms that exist in the desktop environment are ill-suited for the Web, while many of the Web paradigms people are familiar with (paging, explicit refresh) are no longer necessary with RIA technologies like Flex and Ajax. As this space matures, we are learning more and more about which boundaries can be pushed, and which patterns transcend time and technology. While working on the book Designing Web Interfaces, Bill Scott and I explored hundreds of Web applications searching for these patterns. Armed with a crazy amount of examples, we distilled the patterns into six principles:

  • Make It Direct
  • Keep It Lightweight
  • Stay in the Page
  • Provide Invitations
  • Use Transitions
  • React Immediately

But we didn't tackle the larger topic of how to create a rich application. What is the process? How did products like Mint, Balsamiq, and Wufoo get so good?

This article will outline the process we use to create rich applications, focusing primarily on screen design. All of the content is geared specifically toward productivity applications like Software as a Service (SaaS) products and Rich Enterprise Applications (REAs).

via www.uxmag.com

Excellent article on designing RIA's with great example of screen patterns.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Flickr Seasons Visualization

The two of us see the world as a stream of color, and in 2009 we finally had a chance to draw the river in our heads. We began with a collection of photographs of the Boston Common taken from Flickr. Using an algorithm developed for the WIRED Anniversary visualization, our software calculated the relative proportions of different colors seen in photos taken in each month of the year, and plotted them on a wheel. The image below is an early sketch from the piece. Summer is at the top, with time proceeding clockwise.

via hint.fm

Very cool visualizations!

Wednesday, 03 March 2010

An Adobe Flash developer on why the iPad can’t use Flash

I can't believe this didn't occur to me before.

Current Flash sites could never be made work well on any touchscreen device, and this cannot be solved by Apple, Adobe, or magical new hardware.

That’s not because of slow mobile performance, battery drain or crashes. It’s because of the hover or mouseover problem.

The author explores the potential solutions and why none of these will work.

Full article.

(via Drew)

Tuesday, 02 March 2010

Are You Prepared to Lose Control of the Idea?

Letting go is freeing but it takes practice. Sometimes, lots & lots of practice.

Posted via web from Better Way Shop

Do you Track Your Achievements?


What did you achieve last year? What progress did you make towards your goals?

Those are questions that, a few years ago, I'd have had trouble answering. Perhaps I could point to some money saved up, or to the next step of a qualification earned, but it was hard to see whether I'd really made much progress. Often, I'd feel bad that I hadn't achieved more – even when I'd actually done quite a lot.

If you don't already have some way of tracking your achievements, I'd urge you to adopt this as a habit. I'll take you through the way I do it, and explain why it's important.

It's easy to lose sight of your goals and achievements and only focus on what didn't get done. Track, measure & celebrate!

Posted via web from Better Way Shop

A Happiness Lesson from Julia Child?

An excellent happiness lesson. Build enthusiasm and they will follow!

Posted via web from Better Way Shop

Monday, 01 March 2010

47 Decent Lifestyle Design Resources | Project Mojave Blog

47 Decent Lifestyle Design Resources

TravelTrailerSNZ

Photo by TravelTrailerSNZ.

[Note: I intentionally decided not to use a beach photo.  Lifestyle design means different things to different people; it isn't just for middle-aged businessmen living as expats in coastal regions, although that is the stereotype.]

Lifestyle design (LD) has a lengthy past but a short history.  The art of (sometimes radical) lifestyle configuration, however, has been practiced for quite sometime by liberated people from all walks of life.

The growth of the Internet has enabled those loaded with cash to disconnect from the 9-5 without disconnecting from their Porches, Louis Vuitton gear, mobile cash cow businesses, and brokerage accounts. The Internet's rise has also allowed persons from less auspicious backgrounds (like myself) to live creatively without making seemingly prohibitive income sacrifices. Indeed, if one plays their cards right, a mainstream Internet presence can eliminate the monetary drawbacks that used to come with a a non-mainstream lifestyle. Technology has come a long way, and I%u2019m glad that lifestyles are starting to catch up.

Here's a list of lifestyle design resources that might be of help to the interested.

Great list for people obsessed with lifestyle design... like me.

Posted via web from Better Way Shop

Brainwashed: Seven Ways to Reinvent (by @SethGodin)

Issue 66 - 01 | Brainwashed: Seven Ways to Reinvent Yourself
By Seth Godin Published Jan. 13, 2010 5:03 p.m.

“Years ago, when you were about four years old, the system set out to persuade you of something that isn’t true.

Not just persuade, but drill, practice, reinforce, and yes, brainwash.

The mission: to teach you that you’re average. That compliant work is the best way to a reliable living. That creating average stuff for average people, again and again, is a safe and easy way to get what you want.

Step out of line and the system would nudge (or push) you back to the center. Show signs of real creativity, originality or even genius, and well-meaning parents, teachers and authority figures would eagerly line up to get you back in line.

Our culture needed compliant workers, people who would contribute without complaint, and we set out to create as many of them as we could.

And so generations of students turned into generations of cogs, factory workers in search of a sinecure. We were brainwashed into fitting in, and then discovered that the economy wanted people who stood out instead.

When exactly were we brainwashed into believing that the best way to earn a living is to have a job?

I think each one of us needs to start with that.”

View this manifesto | 5 Comments and 7 Reactions

About Seth Godin | Seth Godin is a bestselling author, entrepreneur and agent of change. Godin is author of multiple books that have been bestsellers around the world and changed the way people think about marketing, change and work. His newest book is Linchpin.

Posted via email from Better Way Shop

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