Showing posts from January, 2014

"The Unicorn Institute -- Courses to shape the future of UX design"

Today I saw the ads for the new Unicorn Institute. An interesting initiative to create a new program with the purpose to educate students to become the future of UX design. It is right now a Kickstarter project led by some well known people in the field.

This is how they introduce the idea:

"You might be asking yourself: Why do we need a UX design school? Doesn’t this already exist someplace?
It’s true, you can learn parts of user experience design through a variety of programs, both online and in person. However, it’s challenging to piece together all of the required skills for a UX designer. We’re creating a holistic program that connects education and industry to bridge the skills gap between what students learn and what industry needs. Our long-term goal is to create a bricks-and-mortar school where students learn the comprehensive skills to earn meaningful jobs in the field of user experience design. We want to create a school to produce industry-ready UX professionals—otherwise …

I bought a $37 tablet -- what did I learn from that?

I few days ago I got my new Ubislate 7Ci that I ordered online. I do not need another tablet, I have an iPad and an iPhone so this was more out of curiosity. How can anyone design, produce and sell a 7 inch tablet for $37? The company that makes Ubislate is called Datawind.

So, now I have tried the Ubislate for a few days or at least tried to use it.  It has an Android system. Actually most of the manual and support language present the device as if it is a phone. The Ubislate has a camera, apps, and an app store, it has most built-in functionality that you would expect from a tablet.

First impressions are that is is very, very slow, really, really bad screen, it is far from intuitive to use. It is still quite amazing (and somewhat disturbing) that something like this can be produced and sold for $37. I will not review the tablet per se here, I suppose there are many reviews online already. Instead I have been testing this device just to see what kind of observations and questions it …

A lesson about design and quality---a video by Saddleback's CEO

This is a fun and interesting video that reveals the design thinking and material quality of the Saddleback's bags. Dave Munson shows in the video how you can produce a cheap version of his expensive bags by saving money on design and materials.

"Connecting" short movie about the future of interaction design

About a year ago (I think) the company Basset & Partners presented a short movie (18 minutes) on Vimeo called "Connecting". At the time I watched the movie and I liked what I saw. Some of my colleagues are interviewed and so are a number of leading people from industry. I watched it again this morning for some reason and realized (again) that it contains a lot of interesting and exciting ideas about the history and future of interaction design. The insights delivered are still highly relevant even though some are somewhat futuristic. It is possible to identify some deep thoughts or underlying philosophy presented by the interviewees. Even though some parts of the video is focused on technological progress, the values and visions that the participants reveal are strongly human centered and far from being simplistically solution oriented or technology driven. It is great to see so many industrial leaders in our field being so thoughtful. A big thanks to Basset & Partne…

ACM Interactions magazine now with new design and layout

As you may know I am co-Editor-in-Chief together with Ron Wakkary of the ACM Interactions magazine. It is a publication that we present like this:

"ACM interactions magazine is a mirror on the human-computer interaction and interaction design communities and beyond. It is a multiplicity of conversations, collaborations, relationships, and new discoveries focusing on how and why we interact with the designed world of technologies. interactions has a special voice that lies between practice and research with an emphasis on making engaging human-computer interaction research accessible to practitioners and on making practitioners voices heard by researchers."

The new Jan/Feb 2014 issue is just out. It is the first issue with our new redesigned logo and layout. We also introduce some new departments. We have also made some real changes to the structure and order of articles. It has been a fascinating process where we have worked with professional magazine designer Luke Hayman and…

An absolutely excellent talk on how to write a research paper

I have just watched this video on how to write a great research paper. The talk is by Professor Simon Peyton Jones, Microsoft Research. In the talk Peyton Jones presents eight principles on how to develop and write a research paper. The content is wonderfully clear, and in my view, completely correct. The principles he discusses are very similar to what I often repeat to my students (and I am sure many of my colleagues too). So, the content of the talk is great and so is the way it is done. I highly enjoyed watching this. Great advice presented in a great way!

Thank you Chung-Ching for posting the link on Facebook.