Tag Archives: UX

My Dream Prototyping Tool 2017

Here are the requirements for my dream prototyping tool: Cross-platform There are some that are mature and cross-platform like Axure, Justinmind, Balsamiq, MockPlus, Figma and Microsoft PowerPoint. However, the two that are not are Adobe Experience Design (XD) and Sketch. I clearly need it to work both in Mac and Windows. Has symbols (reusable components) This… Read More »

Adobe Experience Design (XD) – Almost

My design tools: Pencil (#2 Soft HB Dixon Ticonderoga) and paper Microsoft PowerPoint on Windows 10 However, over the years, I have tried numerous alternatives. So far, none have been better in terms of quick iterations, high (enough) fidelity, portability, and ease of communication. I have tried numerous prototyping tools, graphics editors of all shapes and… Read More »

The UX of Android Auto

I recently got a new car lease. (Kia Sportage 2017) I liked the Nissan Rogue but the Kia has Android Auto and I wanted to give that a try. Otherwise, the cars were very similar in price and features. Here is my run down: The Good “OK Google” works well for a specific set of… Read More »

The Department of Redundancy Department

This elevator control brought to you by the department of redundancy department. Why do we call the first floor L in this scenario? Why not just say 1? L for lobby just seems unhelpful. Plus, the door-close button doesn’t do a thing. It’s totally useless. Pressing it has no effect at all. It’s the little things in… Read More »

New LinkedIn UI is Slow

I don’t know how many people have the new UI in LinkedIn. I can’t seem to get out of it. (Yes, I tried) It’s slow af. Come on guys. You have buko resources. You should focus on speed, speed, speed. This is unacceptable. It’s ugly af. Look at the picture above. Seriously, is this an improvement?… Read More »

Mac Designers Need to Test on Windows

An open letter to designers who only see the world through Apple products. I’ll just jump right to the point. The rest of the world doesn’t see your work the way you intended. Take a look at this screenshot from my Windows 10 machine running Chrome. The site is a designers portfolio. I can’t read… Read More »

UX = Value minus Friction

It’s a simple formula. UX = V – F UX = User Experience V = Value F = Friction If the friction or effort of doing something is higher than the individual perceived value then the majority of people will not want to do it. Some examples where the effort outweighs the perceived benefit and… Read More »

Hiring UX Designer 2016

I am starting my search for a UX Designer to join our team at Engagio. I actually prefer people in the earlier stages of their career. (Directors need not apply) Designer Characteristics: Creative. Can come up with new solutions to problems. OCD. Does it bother you that their is a mistake in this question? Productive.… Read More »

Happy is not my preferred state of being

My mom asks me all the time, “Are you happy?” I find the question to be annoying. (Sorry mom) The reason is that I don’t actually want to be “happy”. Happy to me implies blissful cow-like behavior. It implies sitting and staring at the sunset and thinking, “Gee, this is swell.” To me, it’s boring to… Read More »

The Gooey Emotional Center

Marketo Retrospective Part 9 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. This might be the last one. It’s the part that very few people understand, but I think it is the reason Marketo did well. Some people call it Product Market Fit, but to me that doesn’t do… Read More »

UX and Technical Debt

Marketo Retrospective Part 6 As part of a series, I am doing retrospective lessons from my 9 years at Marketo. Today, I focus on product development. Specifically about a philosophy I have around maintaining products after initial innovation. When you have a startup, the first innovation is complete free from existing customer complaints. It is pure… Read More »

The Power of a Single Word

I am a firm believer in retrospectives. How can you expect to improve without looking back at what you did? I am going to do a series of lessons learned from my 9 years at Marketo. Doing one giant post will be too long, so I’m breaking it up. This is Lesson 1. The Power of… Read More »

My Design Process

I’ll try my best to be concise. Step 1. Receive commandment from God Or your CEO or your PM or boss, whatever. They will say something like, “We need _____” Fill in the blank with any two word feature. (Example: Dynamic Content, Enhanced Security, Cool Dashboards. Step 2. Talk to users Is this obvious? I say users… Read More »

Paying Attention

Before they can pay money, they have to pay attention. Make no mistake, it’s a real currency. Every waking moment is accounted for. Whether it is social media or a smartphone game or even staring at the wall, you are paying out your daily allowance of attention. Most companies want to earn your attention dollars.… Read More »

Engagio closed $22M Series B

Original Haiku Post I am currently Head of Magic (PM/UX) at Engagio. The experience so far has been excellent. The culture is authentic and vibrant. The product vision is very strong and the market dynamics couldn’t be better. Engagio has a strong analytics product already in the market, which is doing very well. Additionally, we have built… Read More »

The Decline of Facts

I’m not looking forward to the presidential debates. The reason is that facts will not be part of the discussion. Imagine this fictitious argument: Fact Person: “The world is spherical.” Feelings Person: “I feel that it is flat.” Fact Person: “There are pictures, science, facts. It’s provable!” Feelings Person: “All of that is faked. Photoshopped.… Read More »

Taking advantage of the herd mentality

It is a sad truth, people go in herds. There are obviously some early adopters, but the majority of people do not want to be the first one to do something, even if it is clearly a good thing to do. Case in point: The NFL Draft. It has been studied and proven that the… Read More »

The Uncanny Valley

The Uncanny Valley used in reference to the phenomenon whereby a computer-generated figure or humanoid robot bearing a near-identical resemblance to a human being arouses a sense of unease or revulsion in the person viewing it. In other words, the uncanny valley is when something looks close to the real thing but our brain freaks… Read More »

There are two kinds of people…

Of course there aren’t, but it is a great way to simplify decisions. Break down the problem to two kinds of people and decide which one you want to optimize for. Some examples: There are two kinds of people… Those that wants their inbox to be empty except new things and those that let’s their inbox… Read More »

Managing via Dials

Often, I will have feedback for a product manager, marketer or designer when they are writing text. I find that people have a hard time taking the feedback in a very specific way. If you say it’s too serious, they assume you want to take it to the extreme. As if there are only 2… Read More »

Even Slack can have bad UX

Even a tool that is awesome like Slack can have bad UX sometimes. Here is a perfect example. Try to make a new channel and you get this dialog Notice the error in yellow and the text underneath. After typing in my channel name, I pressed submit and nothing happened. I didn’t notice the italic/bold yellow verbose… Read More »

Analytics Design vs. Interaction Design

Interaction Design is easy for me. I can see the big picture and architect the system with all of the right patterns. When it comes to Analytics Design, I find my inner muse drags its feet. I am not talking about designing a BI tool like Tableau or Good Data. These have some interesting interactions.… Read More »

Obfuscated Rebate Programs

So this weekend, I went to the Verizon store. I have never gone into that store and left in less than 2 hours. It’s ridiculous how long it takes to get stuff done in there. The reason I was there was to get my youngest his first phone, plus to upgrade my father-in-law. He had… Read More »

Design Principle #13: Give Feedback

This should go without saying, yet apparently it doesn’t. Design Rule #13: When a user gestures or fills out a form or clicks a button or speaks their audio input or whatever…give them appropriate feedback. Of course, the word appropriate is subjective. How do you know how much feedback to give? Let’s look at the… Read More »

Collecting Design Principles

UX design principles 1-10 Over the years, I’ve picked up certain rules that I use as design proverbs. At Engagio, I put them on the wall to remind me and to decorate my area. I just added my 11th and 12th design principle. 11. Vertical Space is Expensive. This refers to the fact that most… Read More »

Silicon Valley Product Marketing

I am not officially trained in anything in particular. I’ve learned from practice for the past 22 years. Over the years, I have headed UX, Product Management, Training, Documentation and Product Marketing. Each area has a different set of mental models and techniques to do a good job. I have seen people who were masters… Read More »

Application Performance Model

The following is a model to determine the optimal response rate of an application. It is optimal and therefore difficult with today’s technology. However, the answer of “instantaneous” is not correct in most circumstances. I + T + D = P Input + Thinking + Delight = Optimal Performance I = Input. This ranges on a… Read More »

Bad UX: Signing into Google Analytics

Something has gone horribly awry at Google Analytics. You click on the Sign In button and get this menu: WTF? I can’t find the damn thing I want. What is all this shit? Here are the flaws: Skimming text doesn’t work. Every single item has the word Google in it. Is that needed? I came… Read More »

MVP Deconstructed

MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product. I have had a long distaste for this acronym, but I think it is worth a deep-dive. I found an image on this website that sums up some of the problems. I’m going to deconstruct it to explain better. Strategy #1: Build too much before launch In this scenario, you… Read More »

Color Inspiration

When designing a new product or brand, you need to get inspiration from somewhere. We are about to launch some new stuff and I realized where my inspiration came from…it was the view out of our window. During the day, it’s especially bright and the reds in the wood glow. The combination of the reds,… Read More »