Category: Featured Articles

What kind of technologies need to be invented to bring us up to speed with Star Trek?

I’m actually quite involved and interested in this question, as my job is to design computer interfaces and support new opportunities in user experiences that I could not have even dreamt of even 5 years ago (I did mobile design then… for Nokia “candybar” phones.) There are a lot of technological advancements in Star Trek: Read More

#UX by any other name

I had a meeting with two government groups last week, they were keenly interested in how they could apply user centered design into their processes. As I prepared my presentation I started looking at all the various terms and “sub-disciplines” that have popped up over the past decade. Lean UX. Design Thinking. Customer Experience Design. Read More

“Experience Downtime”: How trust is as important as usability

“The site’s down.” How many times have you said or heard these words? If you are in the tech industry like me, you’ve probably lost count. If you are the typical consumer, odds are you have heard this a time or two yourself. Uptime is a key focus of all IT vendors, and a real Read More

Usability for Evil: Six Flags Online Meal Deals

REPOSTING an old post, one of my most popular: One of my new favorite sites is Usability for Evil, which shows examples of web sites that benefits the companies behind the sites far more than the users of said sites. Well, I had a personal experience with such a site this week and I gotta Read More

Movies 101: My “movie course in a box”

My friend Ariel confessed to me over dinner several months back she had never seen several movies that I considered seminal classics. Why she hadn’t done so was understandable. Ariel is much younger than me, over a decade. She grew up when the Internet wasn’t a new thing, but “newish”, and she had other things to Read More

“Should I watch Citizen Kane?”: My Answer

I’m going to an express a contrarian view to this question (most movie fans will scream “OF COURSE YOU MUST”): It depends. Do you like black and white movies? Can you pay attention to a movie that does not have explosions? Do you appreciate a good story? Do you love film? If you answered No Read More

UX and Agile – Aligning the Processes

This is a guest post I did for, and I am reposting it here. Several years ago I attended a presentation on Agile and UX at the Agile Australia conference, and about ten minutes into the talk I started twitching. The two UX folks on the stage were the worst example of user experience Read More

UX Trends to watch for in 2016

Late last year, I was asked to write on UX Trends for Content Science Review – I happily agreed, and they posted my article in early January. With their permission, I’m reposting it here: One of the great things about my job as a UX design lead at Microsoft is I am surrounded by smart Read More

Star Trek vs. Star Wars: We have a winner…

As most people who read a blog like this knows, the new Star Wars film opened to a colossal amount of tickets sold  – $250 million in the US, and $500 million dollars worldwide, and that was just during the first weekend. To put that number in perspective, the last Star Trek film, Into Darkness, Read More

My Interview with the UX Practitioner Series

Had the great opportunity to talk to Lauren Ventura for her UX Practitioner series – you can see the interview here – but I also wanted to crosspost the interview here – “for the record”, as it were. To start, I’d love to learn a little more how your career path has segued over the Read More

Rest in peace, Beth: Saying goodbye to an old friend

They’re burying a friend of mine in 12 hours. Her name was Beth. Beth Hill, when I knew her most, and Beth Hill Taylor after she got married. She loved that – the idea that she was, effectively, Elizabeth Taylor. In name if not in historic fact. That alone tells you a lot about her. Read More

Inert Heroes: Why some of cinema’s best films have passive protagonists

I’ve written before about how in Goldfinger, the film that many consider the “Gold Standard” for the series (pun intended), James Bond really doesn’t really do much. He gets captured, he learns about Goldfinger’s plan, and  kills Oddjob (he doesn’t even disarm the nuke Goldfinger set to blow up Fort Knox). Other than that he Read More

The eight most common mistakes made on UX projects

I’ve worked in the UX discipline for over a decade now, and have been on a number of projects both large and small. One of the skills I’ve picked up in that time is pattern recognition, which helps me create personas and to identify trends to design for. It also helps me notice when things Read More

The day I saved Timothy Leary’s life

I realized a few days ago I had a couple of pretty good stories that I had never written up. One, involving Richard Simmons, I will not recount until he passes away (dead people can’t sue). The other, involving the time I saved Timothy Leary from grievous bodily harm… that one I can recount here. Read More

Seven things your boss needs to know about UX

As someone who has been in the user experience domain for a LOOONG time, I have had lots of conversations with many different executives. And, most of the time, these execs knew how to spell “UX”, but they didn’t know much else about it. There were many misconceptions that needed correcting and while it was sometimes Read More

Star Trek is broken – here are ideas on how to fix it

Crosspost from (and please check out the… interesting comments to this post there.) At last month’s official Star Trek Convention in Las Vegas, I had the privilege to speak about “Treknology”. The experience was great – I was thrilled at the response of my fellow fans to my presentation. What struck me was the response from Read More

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