The Fold: Enough is Enough

I rarely remember my dreams. Sometimes they’re gone so quickly I’m not sure I ever actually had them. I don’t think I have reoccurring dreams, but then again it would be hard to confirm. There is one exception however, one dream which I’ve been having since 2005. In this dream I’m in a dark conference […]

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10 Psychological Principles to Design With

Design is most effective when executed with knowledge of psychology. Knowing how people react to visual stimuli allows the crafting of an effective design, with out psychology you are guessing. Psychology itself is a vastly fluctuating and massive subject, but that doesn’t mean you need a PhD to use it in your design. There are […]

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Emotional Aspects of Usability

Logic and statistics drive many usability discussions. How many users accomplished a task? How long did it take on average? What labels caused delays? Likewise, emotion is often discussed in context of interactivity and aesthetics. Emotion and usability sound like separate topics but they closely intertwined, so much so they are impossible to separate. I […]

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Snippet: Mobile First is History Repeating

As a fan of Jakob Neilsen and a skeptic of the “every design should be responsive” methodology, I have been frustrated with the criticism of Neilsen’s stance on mobile websites. Recently I published my thoughts on the two sides (mobile specific websites and responsive design) hoping to cultivate a discussion on mobile design and why […]

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Snippet: Designing Navigation, a GitHub Case Study

I respect navigation more than any other element on a website. Little else commands the responsibility of navigation. Poor navigation leaves people dumbfounded, confused and frustrated. Great navigation effortlessly directs users toward the content or actions they desire and can reroute lost users while minimizing mental processing. Even the over glorified “call to action” is simply another […]

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Design, Copy and Mental Processing

Most discussions of speed and websites focus on response time, download footprint and rendering performance. While all aforementioned elements are important, there is another aspect of site performance to be aware of— the speed of the human mind. It’s safe to say the human brain processes information faster than any computer, browser and of the internet, so it […]

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Clark is Wrong About Nielsen Being Wrong About Mobile

Earlier last week, I was pleasantly surprised when Jacob Nielsen posted a report on mobile web design which closely mirrored my own philosophy. The key takeaway of the article is that mobile specific sites are more effective than full content sites with mobile friendly presentation. After reading the article, I hoped the findings would put […]

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Redundant is Usable

Over the past fifteen plus years of designing websites for other people, I have received countless requests to remove elements from a design because they are “redundant.” The perception is that if something is included on the page once, especially in an obvious fashion, there’s no reason to repeat it elsewhere. Further baffling, it’s my […]

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Selective Disregard, Why It’s Causing Your Website To Fail

Few websites are designed with bad intentions. If the designer or stakeholders care about the project you can be sure every element on the page has been analyzed, reviewed and tweaked. This sounds obvious, but it should be disconcerting. Let me explain further. If most websites have had thought and care put into them, why are […]

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Responsive Web Design, is it the Answer? or Just Responsive?

I have shrugged off responsive web design for some time now despite it’s growing popularity. I first came across “the concept” four years ago; at the time, responsive design required Javascript and dynamically changed stylesheets based on viewport size.  Suffice to say I have long been aware of the capability to adapt design based on […]

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