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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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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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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A Humbling Observation on the State of Web Designers

Today, the vast majority of websites are still designed and built by talented generalists, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. It’s just that some of the larger and more complex sites do require composite teams of specialists with a singular focus. Experts in information categorisation, human computer interaction or interface design. They also need […]

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My Beef With “Universal Design”

I have been a web accessibility advocate since as early as 2005. Since then I have done presentations on its importance, written articles about it, co-hosted a podcast on the subject and even included it in my upcoming book. Recently discussion has arisen around how the practice of accessibility should be better encouraged. One of the concerns, is […]

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Is the Designer Always Right?

Due to a few interesting posts on Forrst.com and some interesting client interactions, I have been contemplating the designers ideal role in website creation. It was not long ago that I found myself constantly frustrated because, as the designer I had made informed decisions that people chose to ignore. Much of my energy was being […]

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Ten Laws to Design By

— Updated May 2017 As designers we have to be aware of the function of our work and design as much as we care about the aesthetics and visuals. There are a lot of terms for the design of how the site functions and works, from “usability design” to “user experience,” what remains constant is that […]

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Your Design May Be Beautiful, but It Might Still Suck…

I want to preface this post by first saying that I believe one of the great strengths of our industry is that we have people from such diverse backgrounds. The evolution of the personal computer and the sophistication of design programs like Photoshop have created a low barrier to entry in the development of graphics. […]

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