Inclusive step-free access

Step-free access on the tube

Nice example of functional requirements engineering and standardisation on a project that marries legacy infrastructure (the platform height, distance) with a new bespoke build (the new TfL S Stock trains). A usable, inclusive and delightful experience; someone, somewhere, did their job right.

Next stop: throwing technology, like gap fillers, at the “Mind the Gap” interaction kludge =).

The Researcher is Present

Inner Judge by Tom Grillo
The Inner Judge by Tom Grillo
The Inner Judge by Tom Grillo

A nice graphic from a New York Times article — An Appeal to Our Inner Judge — about the innate ability of our unconscious mind to create bias, assumptions and profiling; particularly as applied to people.

Identifying and factoring for inherent prejudice is essential in many aspects of user experience work; perhaps when recruiting new team members, meeting new clients but especially when working with research participants.

I also like how this graphic illustrates how many cognitive activities, conscious or otherwise, are undertaken by a researcher as they facilitate experience design sessions, particularly how many variables can be brought into play during a seemingly simple one-to-one interaction like a interview, let alone something more complex like a focus group or usability test.

In both cases being aware of the unspoken influence your inner judge will positively affect your ability to reach better outcomes and decisions for your project.

User Centred Government, Notes

My favourite nuggets from Leisa Reichelt’s talk at HCID Open Day 2014, organised by City Interaction Lab.

Leisa was talking about about affecting good user-centred practices in large and complex organisations via her role at GDS. As usual she had lots of sensible, practical and plainly spoken advice for helping to stay focussed on collaborating to ship great experiences.

Notes

“User research closes distance”

— insightful and succinct way to remember and describe empathetic experience design practice.

“You can’t iterate away bad policy”

— you’ve got to get people and process aligned on projects.

“Every team member should observe 2 hours of user research every 6 weeks”

…and…

“At least one session of research should be planned for every two weeks of design work”

— about the idea of a minimum viable number of exposure hours[1] that are necessary to make a difference to a project team.
Also about using quantifiable targets (numbers) to positively affect behaviour, culture and processes: “it’s amazing how things just become a thing”.

“The strategy is delivery. Deliver useful stuff to teams incredibly regularly”

— a nice way to think about selling your value to people and teams by being dependable, visible, findable and just-in-time.

Further reading

  1. UIE: Fast Path to a Great UX – Increased Exposure Hours