Choosing User Research Methods Wisely

Nielsen User Research Methods Chart

There are a number of user research methods that can be employed–20, according to Nielsen Norman Group. Choosing the right one should be a function of the stage of the project and what one seeks to find out. When to Use Which User-Experience Research Methods gives a some guidance on choosing the right method or methods. They also include a brief description of the 20 user research methods at the end of the post.

Graphic by Nielsen Norman Group

A Tribute to the Boring Designer

Cap Watkins:

Whenever I’m looking at a product designer’s work, I find myself continuously asking the same question: which solution is the boring one? Maybe it’s born out of seeing apps choose flash over function, or trying to understand just one too many indecipherable icons-as-buttons. Whatever the case, here’s an ode to the boring designers among us. The designers who…

Read more about the 5 characteristics of the boring designer on Cap’s blog.

via Trent Walton

Security Questions for Single, Childless People

From McSweeney’s: Security Questions for Single, Childless People.

Here are a few of my favorites:

  • What is the name of the town you got the hell out of when you graduated from high school?
  • What is the color of the fur of the cat who will be the first one to start chewing on your leg after you die alone at home and leave all of your pets without any food or water for days?
  • In one word, sum up your most depressing New Year’s Eve. (Examples: “Measles.” “Robocop.”)

Berg Cloud Shutting Down

Little PrinterSad news out of London last week. The people that brought us Little Printer are closing up shop. Unfortunately, this means that the infrastructure behind Little Printer (Berg Cloud) will be going away. Berg has committed to keeping the Little Printers running through March of 2015. After that, any Little Printers out in the wild, while still cute, won’t be functional–unless Berg finds a buyer, or open sources the server software.

Berg Cloud was promising, and it’s a shame they couldn’t make a go of it. This also serves as a reminder that many IoT devices are only as good as the server that runs them–without it, they can’t connect to anything. It would be wonderful if an open source service bus (sorry for the enterprise lingo) could be maintained so all connected devices need not be locked into a vendor’s server, or have the horsepower to do their own computing.

via Core77