Prototype

Redesigning an Intranet Site: Final Stages, Launch, and Lessons Learned

Mar 7, 2018 |

Helpful lessons from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) on the redesign of an intranet. Read »

Redesigning an Intranet Site: Final Stages, Launch, and Lessons Learned

How Do You Redesign a ‘Dinosaur’? Redesigning an Intranet Site: the Beginning Stages

Sep 19, 2016 |

Many content managers in the digital world understand the irrepressible desire to improve, fix, edit, add, and move things around. Indeed, it’s our job to nurture this ongoing process to create, update, test, update again. And, repeat! But, what about those sites or pages that seem to never crawl up to the ‘high-priority’ list and Read »

Smithsonian Learning Lab: Designing for the Classroom

Aug 29, 2016 |

The Smithsonian’s mission statement is wonderfully simple: “The increase and diffusion of knowledge.” The “increasing” is arguably the straightforward part – the Smithsonian has amassed a collection of over 138 million objects and specimens, and the Institution’s curators and scientists obsessively add to the world’s knowledge base, publishing papers, creating exhibitions, and sharing their expertise. Read »

Using Pirate Metrics to Analyze Your Mobile Application’s Audience

May 12, 2016 |

What Makes a Native App Successful? There are over 200 native applications in the federal government with various download numbers. Are the ones with the most downloads the most successful? Is the one with fewer users who are more engaged more successful? It depends on what you are trying to accomplish. David Cooper, the Mobile Read »

Under the Hood: Building a New College Scorecard with Students

Sep 18, 2015 |

Summary: How the U.S. Digital Service worked with students, families, schools, developers and teams across the federal government to rebuild the new College Scorecard tool. My niece is a smart kid. I’m biased, but I swear she is. And just as I started working on the College Scorecard project as the U.S. Digital Service’s new Read »

The Usability ‘Aha!’ Moment: How to Turn Cynics into Converts

Mar 6, 2015 | ,

User Experience (UX) is the comprehensive experience a person has when using a product or application, and usability is the ease of use (or lack thereof) when using it. Many of us have discovered the vast advantages of evaluating usability on our own; however, getting others to jump on board is often a different story. Read »

Institutionalizing User Experience: Building Usability into Your Organization

Feb 13, 2015 |

So, you have some systems or tools your customers or employees access. Maybe you want to put together a robust capability to conduct usability testing. How do you start formalizing user experience (UX) into your organization? Brad Ludlow at GSA tossed this topic out on the User Experience community listserv, and I’ve encapsulated the superb discussion that Read »

Making Prototypes with Tools You Already Have

Dec 19, 2014 |

They say that necessity is the mother of invention. For me, the necessity resulted from long product development cycles paired with short windows for user testing and little room for iteration. The “invention” was the discovery of a powerful set of tools for prototyping that are available on just about Read »

Paper Prototyping PTSD Coach

Aug 21, 2014 |

The PTSD Coach mobile app from the Department of Veterans Affairs, provides veterans and users with information about PTSD and professional care, along with self-assessment tools and aid in finding support opportunities. The app has been downloaded over 100,000 times in 74 Read »

Design Sketching: The Easiest Prototype Method Ever

Aug 8, 2014 |

When it comes to Web and software design, the pen(cil) is often mightier than the Design Suite. What I mean is: Tech is cool, but don’t fall under its spell. It’s often when you remove the technological layers between you and your thoughts that the best ideas sprout. You’ve heard of great ideas that started Read »

How to Make a Mobile Paper Prototype

May 22, 2014 |

What if a single piece of paper could make your mobile app work 20 percent better? It’s hard to imagine something as unimpressive as paper influencing our 21st century smartphones, but it’s true. Well before we get into the design and coding phases, we can show customers Read »

Kids.gov – Usability Case Study

Apr 2, 2014 |

For a children’s site, Kids.gov is pretty old—it was launched back in 2001. And it has the unenviable task of trying to keep pace with the rapidly changing online habits of youngsters. So in 2012, Kids.gov Director Arlene Hernandez thought her site was due a usability test with its two main audiences: kids and their Read »

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