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Balancing visual and structural complexity in interaction design
How visual simplicity can harm usability
Read the article Balancing visual and structural complexity in interaction design
Usability is based on principles such as "Less is more" and "Keep it simple, stupid". But there is more to simplicity than meets the eye. By reducing visual complexity at the cost of structural simplicity, you will give your users a hard time understanding and navigating the content of a web site.

Read the article:
Balancing visual and structural complexity in interaction design

 
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PAST ISSUES

ISSUE 07 - July 2003
Personas and the customer decision-making process

ISSUE 06 - April 2003
Supporting customers' decision-making process

ISSUE 05 - January 2003
Business-centred design - Designing web sites that sell

ISSUE 04 - October 2002
InfoRomanticism on the Internet - Romantic sensibility in the design of online content

ISSUE 03 - July 2002
Results from a Survey Of Web Prototyping Usage
Visio - the Interaction Designers Nail Gun

ISSUE 02 - April 2002
The Bottom-line of Prototyping and Usability Testing - How user-centred design techniques can make a cost effective workflow

ISSUE 01 - January 2002
Competitive Usability - How usability will be the key differentiator of tomorrow's Internet


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LATEST POSTINGS
I'm sorry to announce that the ability to add postings and comments on GUUUI has been closed down because of massive spamming of the site - Henrik Olsen
New posting added after your last visit at GUUUIMethods and the Design Process
Objections against user-centred design
Introducing a user-centred design approach in an organisation can sometimes be difficult. According to Jesse James Garrett, some of the most common objections are:

- We know our users - they're just like us.
- We know our users - we've done all this market research.
- All we have to do is follow this list of guidelines.
- The interface is trivial compared to the technical work we need to do.
- It takes experts to understand user behavior. We don't have that kind of money.
- It doesn't take experts to understand user behavior. We'll figure it out as we go.
- We'll fix it in QA.
- We can't make room for it in the schedule.

As a result, "Most Web sites are not designed. They are, at best, contrived - roughly patched together using a mix of half-understood guidelines, imitations of approaches taken by other sites, and personal preferences masquerading as "common sense""

Links:
The article All Those Opposed - Making the case for user experience in a budget-conscious climate

Henrik Olsen | July 28, 2003

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New posting added after your last visit at GUUUITips and Guidelines
Jakob Nielsen on information foraging
"…information foraging uses the analogy of wild animals gathering food to analyze how humans collect information online."

"The two main strategies are to make your content look like a nutritious meal and signal that it's an easy catch. These strategies must be used in combination: users will leave if the content is good but hard to find, or if it's easy to find but offers only empty calories."

Links:
Information Foraging: Why Google Makes People Leave Your Site Faster

Henrik Olsen | July 03, 2003

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New posting added after your last visit at GUUUICases and Examples
Personas and the customer decision-making process
The Q3 2003 issue of GUUUI features a case study showing how the use of personas can help us capture the nature of online customers and design for their needs and concerns, as they progress through the customer decision-making process.

Links:
The GUUUI article Personas and the customer decision-making process

Henrik Olsen | July 01, 2003

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New posting added after your last visit at GUUUIResearch and Statistics
Breadth vs. depth in menu design
According to Kath Straub and Susan Weinschenk, research shows that users generally find information faster in broad and shallow structured sites than the narrow and deep ones – as long as they are not extremely broad.

"Research comparing navigation efficiency through sites of varying depths and breadths broadly converges on the findings that users find roughly 16 (ungrouped) top-level links leading into 2-3 subsequent menus the most efficient, learnable and least error prone."

But several other factors are also thought to influence ease of navigation, such as clear and distinct labels, and effective sub-grouping of categories.

Links:
The article Breadth vs. Depth

Henrik Olsen | June 27, 2003

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New posting added after your last visit at GUUUIResearch and Statistics
The myth of 7 +/- 2
Periodically, we hear about the rule of 7 +/- 2 from inexperienced interaction designers: Users can't handle more than 7 bullets on a page, seven items in a form list, or more than seven links in a menu. According to James Kalback, this has no evidence in reality – on the contrary. The psychologist George Miller's conclusions apply to what we can memorize – not what we can perceive.

Current research strongly supports that broad structures perform better than deep structures. Users can more easily cope with broad structures, they have a greater chance of getting lost in deep hierarchical structures, and new visitors are able to get a better overview of sites offerings from a broader structure.

Links:
The Myth of Seven, Plus or Minus 2

Henrik Olsen | June 24, 2003

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