Usability for Developers


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Great talk and really good to be reminded of usability. Only suggestion I would make is to have some 'live examples' on sites instead of just screenshots, otherwise really good.

I definitely enjoyed this talk, and it reaffirmed much of my understanding of usability. One thing I'd like to add: most of us as developers are "hidden in the back" and don't necessarily interact with our end users. Find out who does - Customer Support, Sales, etc - because I can guarantee if there's usability issues with your site, they've heard about them many times. They also may be familiar with "User Personas" that you haven't considered.

I once deployed a combination social/e-commerce site in a hobby market, where the typical person interested in the hobby is male, aged 13 to 30. What we found from talking to our Customer Support staff though, was that while the social aspects were used by our expected audience, the store itself was frequently used by their mothers, grandmothers, wives - people who weren't involved in the hobby at all, and didn't really understand how the products were organized in the store. We got the mothers of a few local customers involved in usability testing and their feedback almost *immediately* improved the bottom line.

Anonymous at 12:54 on 27 Sep 2012

Excellent presentation. Very much down to earth and in the right amount of detail. I also like the examples given toward the end. I think you have also done a very good job of presenting in such a way that forces the audience to participate, and that is always a good thing.

Enjoyed this one - some great examples of usability "fails". Even though it wasn't too "techy", it was a nice review of the basic we all need to know.

Thanks Beth. I'm going to share that list of pointers with the rest of my tiny little team.

Unicorn puke is such a great term.

+1 for Unicorn Puke.

While things like Bootstrap have helped us move out of the early 90's when developers need to design, this presentations gives a good overview of things we still need to look out when we customize or create designs from scratch.

Very nice presentation and a very good overview of the most important aspects of Usability. It was both a good refresher in some areas, and excellent new lessons in others.

Black text on white slides was easy to read. Concepts clearly explained and funny, but my favorite part was the actual evaluations of websites (some obscure, some well-known) using these concepts. My only suggestion: perhaps do more audience participation in the beginning, maybe with each concept, to set the tone of involvement for the session.

A few more comments...The section of making forms usable was especially helpful, since developers are the ones building the darn things. I might even move this earlier in the session to increase audience participation. The summary slide at end was great, I'd also liked to see it at the beginning, too. Really appreciated the way you started out with Why this topic actually matters to developers.

Anonymous at 10:57 on 4 Oct 2012

I was greatly disturbed that you were still able to find example sites that were that bad. Though, in looking into them, all were straight HTML pages. Neither, were PHP generated. Was expecting examples by PHP developers.

I like the term "unicorn puke." It was very appropriate.

You made some good points about what should and shouldn't be changeable fields, and why, as pointed out by the rational behind the unorthodox Facebook sign-up form.

This was a great soft-skills talk that had a lot of relevance on a topic that is often overlooked by most developers. Slides were simple and effective. This talk had a lot of crowd interaction which helped keep everyone focused on the message.

Great talk, good summary about things to think about when you're making your site useable.

Excellent talk! +1 also for unicorn puke. Thanks for coming out to Denver.

Great talk, even if I was told I couldn't answer a question... ;-P

The talk is a gives some great reminders to developers. It is sometimes hard to have the thought process of a user, but Beth gave some wonderful advice.

I like the idea of having live examples as well, but I know an Internet connection isn't always available.

Beth gave a warning about audience participation and the awkward silences. Maybe, because of the small nature of the sessions, calling people out directly.