Usability Testing IRL

Today, I went into a Clinton Hill cafe on a break from work. It was 2pm, and the cafe was crowded with people. My latte was excellent, but my user experience was not. Where should I order? Are there separate lines for ordering food and ordering coffee and paying? Are these people in line or …

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Academic Tools (Bad Design)

I have often marveled at the bad design of Pratt’s “Academic Tools,” and now, thanks to Donald Norman and The Design of Everyday Things, I have some vocabulary to explain why the design is so bad. Academic Tools is a section of Pratt Institute’s website that allows students to do the following tasks: accept or …

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SelfControl (Good Design)

SelfControl, the most intimidating icon in my laptop’s dock, is the key to my academic success, and, I will argue, an example of good design. It is a free, open source software that allows users to block their own access to websites for a set period of time. Procrastinating, compulsive checkers of social media can …

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