As the products we use every day become increasingly complex, the art of user onboarding has taken on greater significance. Mobile apps, software, and websites have accustomed us to being greeted with feature tours, coach marks, contextual tips, even “gesture practice.” But there’s more to consider than simply front-loading your product with all the information your users might need to know.
Last year we brought deep electrical expertise in-house when we hired Todd Zielinski as our director of electrical engineering. It’s something we’ve been wanting to do for a while. Electromechanical functionality has become integral — it’s the backbone of the majority of products we develop. Now it’s integrated, too, and we’re excited about this most recent step toward excellence.
As a product-development consultant (and former entrepreneur), I continue to see startups encountering the same set of roadblocks over and over again. Here are the 3 biggest sore spots, and my advice on how to anticipate and circumvent them. (Get around those blocks before you start down the startup path.)
IDers and IxDers may be from the same planet, but we’ve grown up in our careers surrounded and influenced by different norms. Despite our differences, we (like men and women) need to learn to work together. In some respects (unlike men and women), you could even argue we’re becoming one.
What comes to mind when you hear the word, “atomization”? If you’re an engineer, it’s charging particles in a fluid so they mutually repel. We break down the process of choosing and implementing different techniques in product development.
Wearables suffer from a general lack of user research. Too often, they’re technology-driven or business-driven when they need to be driven by human experience. Their potential value lies in finding truly novel ways to satisfy our need for connection. Otherwise they are fancy umbilical cords transporting zero nutrients. Here are four steps toward more meaningful wearable tech.
Because you can’t always embed smartphone-equivalent tech, six “smartphone pattern” techniques to provide a similar user experience on a limited hardware budget.
To fight startup failure, practice product testing early and often to answer questions such as: Is it durable enough? Is it easy to use? Is it well designed? Do people like how it looks? How much are people willing to pay for it? This can mean the difference between being the next big thing — and the next big flop.
One takeaway from working as an in-house designer is that great products and happy users result from a design process where clients, or stakeholders, are heavily involved. Here are four steps to forging a model for high client engagement for design consultants who don’t have the benefit of day-to-day contact with clients.
In our third Design Mind, read the innovation story behind Christina Kazakia’s colorful, flexible Stick-lets, novel connectors that encourage kids to connect with the outdoors. The toys have roots in Kazakia’s own childhood play and originated as her graduate thesis project at RISD.