Author name: Aemilia Techentin

Assistive Technology: Read Aloud (Firefox Desktop Extension)

Read Aloud: A Text to Speech Voice Reader by LSD Software is a free text to speech (TTS) browser extension (or “add-on”) that allows internet users to hear webpages read aloud to them. Some webpages may offer an audio file in addition to the text but most do not. It is designed for any internet browser or EPUB reader to listen to written text from almost any page narrated to them. As a functional solution, Read Aloud widens the scope of both how users and which users can engage with webpages.

Professors, Students, History-Buffs Teach Us How to Improve Usability on the Norman Sicily Project Website

We conduct seven remote moderated usability tests with the audiences that are the most targeted users of the Norman Sicily Project website: Scholars, Students, and people with a personal interest in the subject. We carefully matched user goals with pages of the site and found that there is room for significant improvements to usability on important pages to the site. All issues found relate to overall navigation and special site features.

Furthering A Holistic Content Strategy at The Henry Ford: Blending Website and Social Media Data Sources

Through careful planning and structured processes, our team pioneered a way forward for future THF analysts to better monitor the overall social network channels that are converting on their website. By the end of this project, we delivered a series of actionable recommendations and considerations for future data tracking and relevant research.

Creating a Clear and Accessible Online Experience for Girl Scout Volunteers

The Girl Scout of Greater New York (GSGNY) website was in need of a redesign that would better cater to its most important audiences. Our team researched volunteer needs and how to create a streamlined information architecture for key website audiences. We created a new medium-fidelity prototype website for the organization. The redesigned site is much easier to navigate and use, and volunteers can now accomplish a very relevant on the site: find a volunteer-based event and apply for it.

A flightpath drawn over a hazy landscape implies travel enabled by the kayak app.

Design Critique: Kayak (Android App)

The Kayak Android mobile app provides an easy way to find flights, hotel stays, and rental car services. Kayak excels at creating a clear conceptual model of how to set up and run a search, but not of the entire scope of the app’s features. A streamlined interface may also be a trade-off for invitations to human error. It is interesting to note that Kayak was one of the earliest exemplars of creating more usable graphical interfaces for travel booking, but now may be extending its feature list too far.