Cover image of Design Critique: Products for People
(13)
Arts
Business
Design

Design Critique: Products for People

Updated 8 days ago

Arts
Business
Design
Read more

Our show encourages usable designs for a better customer experience in products and services. Each episode is different, with the only constant being our demand that UX design make our lives better and provide long term value. If you care about design's impact on our modern quality of life, give us a listen. You will hear:* Critiques of products & services we've used thoroughly,* Interviews with people whose work or books we admire, and* Discussions of design methods we use in our own user experience research and design careers.

Read more

Our show encourages usable designs for a better customer experience in products and services. Each episode is different, with the only constant being our demand that UX design make our lives better and provide long term value. If you care about design's impact on our modern quality of life, give us a listen. You will hear:* Critiques of products & services we've used thoroughly,* Interviews with people whose work or books we admire, and* Discussions of design methods we use in our own user experience research and design careers.

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
7
3
1
1
1

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
7
3
1
1
1

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!
Cover image of Design Critique: Products for People

Design Critique: Products for People

Latest release on Dec 20, 2019

Read more

Our show encourages usable designs for a better customer experience in products and services. Each episode is different, with the only constant being our demand that UX design make our lives better and provide long term value. If you care about design's impact on our modern quality of life, give us a listen. You will hear:* Critiques of products & services we've used thoroughly,* Interviews with people whose work or books we admire, and* Discussions of design methods we use in our own user experience research and design careers.

Rank #1: DC133 Wordcast: Minimum Viable Product with Syed Ibrahim

Podcast cover
Read more

Syed Ibrahim returns to the show to talk with Tim about his side project, Shoutouts.app. Syed's story of creating this web application is a terrific example of doing a minimum viable product. He candidly shares both advantages and disadvantages of releasing an MVP, and walks us through the details of having an idea, acting on it to create something that works at a basic level for a specific audience, and getting it out there to continue learning and enhancing it. You can find Syed at https://www.syedibrahim.me

One of the best definitions of MVP is from Frank Robinson who created the term around 2000, see http://www.syncdev.com/minimum-viable-product/

Feb 24 2019

41mins

Play

Rank #2: DC132 Critique: Fiskars StaySharp Max reel mower

Podcast cover
Read more

Ben Woods joins Tim Keirnan for a single point perspective on the Fiskars StaySharp Max reel mower. Needing neither gasoline nor electricity, this lawnmower is completely powered by the user to cut the lawn.

Ben discusses the values that led to his wanting this mower and his experience with it over several summer months of use. As usual we follow the critique structure to learn his experience with

  • Encounter
  • Decision
  • Purchase
  • Out of the Box
  • Longitudinal Use

Ben can be found at www.dbenwoods.com.

Dec 16 2018

44mins

Play

Rank #3: DC134 The Buzzwordification of UX (1 of ?)

Podcast cover
Read more

Keith Instone and Serena Rosenhan both return to the show for an episode about UX and "buzzwordification". The last 3-4 years have seen a big rise in the use UX terminology in the media and among coworkers. What are the advantages and disadvantages for UX practitioners now that UX has become popular beyond academia and professional societies? Tim Keirnan sets up the roundtable discussion and the wisdom pours out of these two veteran UX professionals.

The fireplace crackling gets a bit loud at points but plying guests with food, drink, and fireplace ambience is part of our recording process. You can find Serena at www.linkedin.com/in/serenarosenhan

You can find Keith at https://www.linkedin.com/in/keithinstone/

Mar 14 2019

1hr 4mins

Play

Rank #4: DC135 Profession Labels for "Designers of Stuff" with Dave MR

Podcast cover
Read more

Dave Mitropoulos-Rundus returns to talk with Tim Keirnan about labels for our field. This continues our long-running friendly discussion about what we call our profession and why, and is there a difference--or should there be--between User Experience and Customer Experience? Dave appreciates the terminology differences whereas Tim wonders why we make such fine distinctions when at the root level we're all  "Designers of Stuff".

Kelly Goto's excellent 2018 article: https://www.gotoresearch.com/2018/04/11/x-marks-the-spot-in-experience-design-thinking-ux-vs-cx-vs-service-design/

Jared Spool's excellent article published the day we recorded this episode. I think Jared's a mind reader! https://articles.uie.com/ux-and-cx-same-language-different-dialects/

NOTE: Tim regrets interrupting Dave too much in a shocking lapse of bad hosting etiquette...he was hopped up on cough syrup at the time of this recording, which you can hear in his deep head cold voice breaking worse than Peter's in that episode of The Brady Bunch. https://tv.avclub.com/the-brady-bunch-dough-re-mi-1798222209

May 13 2019

36mins

Play

Rank #5: DC130 Interview: Giles Colborne, Author of Simple and Usable 2nd Edition

Podcast cover
Read more

Author Giles Colborne returns to Design Critique to talk with Tim Keirnan about the new second edition of Simple and Usable: Web, Mobile, and Interaction Design.

Simple and Usable is one of the best books on UX we've owned in our careers. The contents are simple and usable just as the title promises, and this is one book that both practitioners and stakeholders will benefit from reading.

Giles and Tim talk for 40 minutes about various topics including

  • Giles' career having progressed along with the UX profession across the decades, moving from basic website design to service design to organizational design.
  • The physical design of the book reflects the theme, and the publisher did not stray from the successful book design of the first edition.
  • How "get out of the office" is still of prime importance today and the crucial importance of field research with our users.
  • Types of users Giles has observed in his career: experts, willing adopters, mainstreamers.
  • The seductive danger of relying on expert users in our designs.
  • How Alan Cooper's method of Personas has been undermined by some practitioners' use of person-less personas when they haven't even talked with or observed actual users. How this risks the integrity of the design profession as much as a user-less usability test would.
  • Working with stakeholders on design projects. Being teacher or facilitator as opposed to "persuader".
  • Don't rush into design. Understanding what's core takes time.

Simple and Usable can be found at its entry on publisher Pearson/NewRiders site.

Aug 20 2018

43mins

Play

Rank #6: DC131 Interview: Fire Engine Design with Chief Dan Phillips

Podcast cover
Read more

Fire Department Chief Dan Phillips joins Tim Keirnan for a discussion about designing the new fire engine for Plymouth Township, Michigan. How does a fire department decide which features are most needed, most wanted, and affordable for a given budget and for the the engine's coverage area?

Unlike most passenger cars, a new fire engine is custom built and takes ten months to deliver. Their cost is over half a million US$. The pressure is on a department to get it right, because the service life of a fire engine is 15 years active duty and 5 additional years in reserve. The new engine balances several values: * Provide safety for the local citizens and their property * Provide safety of the firefighters who use the truck every day * Provide good financial stewardship of limited public resources to get the best solution for the budget.

You can see our Public Safety Committee's short documentary videos on the obsolete current fire engines at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClTidKC6ZDUJVLoWedD5_gA

Our first new fire engine is a Pierce Enforcer. Check out Pierce's website for the Enforcer and other models they make: https://www.piercemfg.com/

Thank you to the men and women working in fire departments everywhere.

Oct 28 2018

53mins

Play

Rank #7: DC129 Critique: Milwaukee Vertical Toolbox

Podcast cover
Read more

Mike Velasco joins Tim Keirnan for a critique of the Milwaukee 13" Jobsite Work Box. This tool box is oriented vertically in contrast with conventional tool box designs, which provides both advantages and disadvantages. While Mike enjoys the design and uses his tool box regularly, Tim has not been as impressed despite the numerous positives of the product's design and construction. This is why we do the show! Good designs of even "simple" products like a tool box cannot always please every user; people are so different.

As usual, we structure our critique around the following points: * Encounter * Decision * Purchase * Initial Impression (out of the box) * Longitudinal review

You can find the tool box at Milwaukee's site here: https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Products/Storage-Solutions/48-22-8010

Note that product photography usually involves very bright lighting, and in this case Tim was not expecting the interior to be as dark as  the product photos appeared. The photo on the Design Critique blog page is not using a flash for a more accurate representation of what a user sees when looking into the box for tools along the bottom.

Jun 10 2018

28mins

Play

Rank #8: DC128 Interview: Gene Duarte, Industrial Designer at Mychanic

Podcast cover
Read more

Industrial designer Gene Duarte joins Tim Keirnan for a discussion about the Pod Light and the Blade Multi Light, two of Gene's designs for Mychanic. As Head of Product Development, Gene tells the story behind the designs of these two creative and usable reinterpretations of the shop light. Tim has used them successfully for ten months and explains why they serve his needs in the garage and the house so well. Well done, Mychanic You can find Gene's Pod Light and Blade MultiLight at http://mychanic.com

In the photo above, the magnetic base of the Pod Light is shown with the paint-safe sticker showing. Also, note the packaging of the Pod Light with the included batteries clearly obvious.

Apr 25 2018

49mins

Play

Rank #9: Update: Molly Fuller Design's Indiegogo Campaign

Podcast cover
Read more

Molly Fuller from episode 127 returns to tell us about her Indiegogo campaign to fund development of more stylish and affordable compression clothing for teens with autism and sensory disorders. Check it out at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/molly-fuller-design-clothing/x/16724313#/

and

http://www.mollyfuller.design

Apr 11 2018

4mins

Play

Rank #10: DC127 Interview: Molly Fuller on Medical Fashion Design

Podcast cover
Read more

Molly Fuller joins Tim Keirnan to discuss creating stylish clothing for teens with autism spectrum disorder or other sensory needs. Her clothing designs use compression as a form of deep pressure for comfort and relaxation. Medical clothing does not have to look “medical” and she tells us about her interest in fashion design in school, and her tying it together with her career in medical service design, including working at the famous Mayo Clinic.

You can learn more about Molly and her products at http://www.mollyfuller.design

Molly is "on tour" this March and April! You can see her at the following events: March 25th - 30th: National Alliance for Caregiving, San Francisco, CA April 10th: Design of Medical Devices Conference, UM Minneapolis April 14th: Fraser Walk for Autism, Mall of America, Minneapolis April 21st: Pickin for Autism, Amsterdam Bar, St. Paul

Mar 21 2018

31mins

Play

Rank #11: DC126 Critique: Toro and Craftsman Snowblowers

Podcast cover
Read more

Let it snow! This episode finds Tim and guest cohost Mike Velasco talking about the customer experience of snowblowers. Or snowthrowers. Tim relates his newbie snowblower customer experience with the Toro SnowMaster 724 QXE while Mike relates his long history with snowblowers in general and his Craftsman 881730.

In a world where the word "innovation" is all too often misused by advertisers and Silicon Valley snake oil salespeople, the Toro is truly innovative. The light weight, the joystick for controlling the chute, the new design for moving the snow, the nimble handling, and the accelerator in its handle are unlike anything Tim found in other brands and models. Its speed is also impressive.

As mentioned in the outro, the website movingsnow.com is a terrific resource for learning about snowblowers, and thewirecutter.com also had a good review of the Toro. https://movingsnow.com/2015/2015-toro-snowmaster-724-qxe-824-qxe-picture-review/

https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-snow-blowers/

https://movingsnow.com/2017/2017-craftsman-snow-blowers-whats-new-one-best/

Feb 28 2018

53mins

Play

Rank #12: DC125 Critique: Reizen Jumbo Talking Calculator

Podcast cover
Read more

Accessibility expert Mike Elledge joins Tim Keirnan for an out-of-the-box critique of the Reizen 12-Digit Jumbo Talking Calculator. This calculator has many features that make it a good choice for people with low vision or coordination troubles, with its oversized buttons and display and its ability to speak values entered and calculated.

However, Mike finds opportunities for improvement, including the typeface chosen for the buttons, the very small and distant minus symbol and other symbols put across the top of the LCD, and more.

We close this episode with email from listener Costan Boiangiu.

Dec 31 2017

33mins

Play

Rank #13: DC124 Critique: Ford FiestaST

Podcast cover
Read more

Eric Penn and Ryan Claffey join Timothy Keirnan for a critique of the Ford FiestaST. We never pretend to be objective on Design Critique, as we are too honest. We admit our biases so you know where our opinions are coming from. In this product category, our bias is small sporty cars with less mass and great handling that let you feel what's going on. The Ford FiestaST is a hot hatchback that won our undying admiration from the first drive.

Tim calls it the American MINI Cooper, and he ought to know. It's as close as we'll ever get to driving a Labrador Retriever puppy. Tim talks in detail with Eric and Ryan about their customer experiences with the FiestaST, including

* Encounter * Decision * Purchase * Initial use * Longitudinal use

Eric's first drive of the 7th Generation Fiesta on Belle Isle was captured for posterity.

Ryan's Protege Garage is also well worth checking out.

Nov 21 2017

1hr 50mins

Play

Rank #14: DC123 Critique: Motorola MotoG4 Android Phone

Podcast cover
Read more

Syed Ibrahim joins Tim Keirnan for a critique of the Motorola MotoG4 smart phone. While the G4 was touted as an affordable, "pure, clutter-free version of Android", Tim's experience was anything but pure Android. Syed's expert Android wisdom provides a counterpoint to Tim's confusion and disappointment as the discussion ranges from the pluses and minuses of the G4 to the shortcomings of various reviews of the phone when it came out. Our conclusion is that, if the botched implementation of the G4's so-called "pure" Android experience is bad, the coverage of the phone in the traditional tech media was even more sloppy. How is one to shop effectively for a good Android phone in light of reviews like this? Syed has suggestions.

Thanks to Tom Merritt for his report on Lenovo switching all its phones to "stock Android". The link to that particular episode of Daily Tech News is at http://www.dailytechnewsshow.com/dtns-3088-left-to-their-phone-devices/

and the license for distributing this excerpt, unmodified, is https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

We won't waste your time linking to all the crappy reviews of the G4 that missed the point in so many ways on this unfortunate phone.

Aug 22 2017

46mins

Play

Rank #15: DC122 Critique: Garmin BaseCamp, Plus Email from Listener Costan

Podcast cover
Read more

We return to the Garmin Nuvi 2598LMTH to try Garmin's companion application for it, BaseCamp. Aravindh Baskaran is back to help Tim Keirnan try to create a customized commute route in to the office and upload the route to the GPS unit. This is a very informal usability test and Tim wanted Aravindh around because the first time Tim tried to do this, he was not successful. Aravindh has used Base Camp to create car club routes on back roads with the Windows version of BaseCamp, so he is acting as informal usability test moderator. The initial use usability problems Tim encountered were nothing compared to the design failure he found transferring the route to the Garmin GPS unit and using it. If you would like to follow along, you can download a Windows or Macintosh version of BaseCamp at Garmin's website: www.garmin.com Listener Costan Boiangiu's excellent email about the UX of GPS devices kicks off this episode, and the informal usability test critique of BaseCamp starts about 15 minutes in.

Jun 30 2017

54mins

Play

Rank #16: DC120: 2003 Subaru WRX Longitudinal Review

Podcast cover
Read more

The Subaru WRX is a legend, and life is too short not to drive legends. The "bug eye" version of this all wheel drive sporty car from 2002 and 2003 was a success worldwide but especially in the North American market where it was the first time we got this car. Later generations of the car delighted owners as well, yet the bugeye models delighted customers in a unique way that the newer cars do not duplicate for all their recent advantages.

What made the bugeye WRX so attractive then and to this day? There is an analog, mechanical honesty and tautness to the 2002-2003 models, and modern versions are not as "organic" feeling. Ken Mayer and Eric Penn join Tim Keirnan for a longitudinal review of Tim's 2003 Subaru WRX. If it sounds like we recorded this episode sitting in the car, well, we did! This episode covers the following items in the following order: * The evolution of the all wheel drive niche in vehicle design and rally race history * The nature of forced induction, its pros and its cons * The superb steering wheel by Momo , the clean and usable instrument panel, the clean and usable controls, the amazingly good seats. * The factory boost gauge and short shifter options. * The design choices of 2003, with a value on providing the most feedback to the driver, versus modern car designs with their isolated and numb feeling for the driver. Ken's dad's 2015 WRX provides contrast to what Subaru did in 2003. How has the model evolved? * The heavy weight and mechanical complexity of an all wheel drive and turbocharged vehicle. * Tim's few and limited modifications to an otherwise stock bugeye WRX. * We almost forgot to talk about the qualities of a boxer engine and the excellent sound of the stock exhaust with unequal length headers. * The oil and transmission fluid dipsticks were poorly designed and those fluids are kind of, you know, just maybe, important. Skip ahead to 31 minutes if you want to bypass our discussion of the history of all wheel drive cars and comparisons to front wheel drive and rear wheel drive, and the principles of forced induction. Eric promises us a longitudinal review of his FiestaST in 2017! Stay tuned. . .

Dec 31 2016

1hr 16mins

Play

Rank #17: DC119: Apple iOS10 Upgrade UI Trickery

Podcast cover
Read more

2016 has been a bad year of manufacturers trying to force customers into upgrading their devices by user interface trickery. First Microsoft and their Windows 10 deceptions, and now Apple with iOS10 reminders that cannot be refused. In this episode, Tim describes Apple's failure to provide a "No" response in the iPhone's UI and the "nag screen" that repeatedly makes an offer the customer can't refuse. It's not quite as bad as the Windows 10 manipulation scheme was, but the increasing lack of respect for device owners is concerning. Tim's proposed Upgrade Bill of Rights says the following: 1. Respect the owner of the product in all ways. All update dialogs must contain a No response. The owner decides what and when to upgrade, not the manufacturer. 2. Enable the owner to control notifications of updates. Enable turning off reminders messages for specific upgrades. 3. Enable the owner to schedule reminders and updates on their own schedule. Between family support, new house projects, and other life details, the new responsive website for the show is still not up. Thanks for your patience.

Nov 16 2016

14mins

Play

Rank #18: DC118 Critique: Kobo eReaders

Podcast cover
Read more

Alvaro Vargas joins Tim Keirnan for a thorough discussion of the customer experience of eReaders, in particular the offerings from Kobo. Tim is the newbie, having recently bought a Kobo Glo HD as his first eReader, and Alvaro provides the longitudinal review of Kobo eReaders, having bought four of them over time. His current model is a Kobo Glo. As usual, the discussion follows Tim's list of Customer Experience Phases: Encounter Decision Purchase Out of the Box Early Use Longitudinal Use In addition to critiquing the Kobo software and hardware, the guys discuss the nature of physical books versus eBooks, the reasons for a single purpose device like eReaders over tablets, and the challenge of getting accurately created eBooks from source material. Among other things. It's 90 minutes of commercial free analysis and discussion! The shownotes photo for this episode features shots of the two eReaders.

Jul 30 2016

1hr 33mins

Play

Rank #19: Mailbag: Listener Email from Brian Shunamon

Podcast cover
Read more

Brian Shunamon from the USA sent us a message so on point that I asked him if I could record it and publish it. As an Information Technology professional with corporate clients, as well as a guy looked to for tech advice by friends and family, Brian addresses the concerns of our last several episodes on Microsoft's customer experience mistakes with its Windows 10 upgrade policy and behaviors. He reminds us that enduring patterns of mistreatment is a bad precedent not only in our personal relationships, but also in our relationships as customers of products and services. You don't have to take it! Nor should we.

Brian's longer written article, "NIXING Windows", about why Microsoft's behavior is a threat to your personal and professional computing life, and how you might consider an personal computer operating system such as Linux, is on his LinkedIn profile at

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/nixing-windows-brian-shunamon?trk=prof-post

Thank-you, Brian!

Jun 23 2016

13mins

Play

Rank #20: DC116 Critique: Apple TV Gen 2, 3 and 4

Podcast cover
Read more

Tim Keirnan and Mike Velasco critique three generations of the
AppleTV: 2, 3, and 4. Mike's experience with Gen 2 and Gen 4
provide a backdrop to Tim's first month with his refurbished Gen
3.

It's 90 minutes of thorough discussion on three iterations of the
same product. Where else will you hear this level of detailed
critique on product design? Nowhere! And not one commercial to fast
forward through.

Apr 30 2016

1hr 29mins

Play

DC140 Critique: Tesla Model 3

Podcast cover
Read more

Tesla Model 3 owners Ryan Malcolm and Syed Ibrahim join Tim Keirnan for a thorough critique of their cars while Tim moderates this ad-free, in-depth discussion. We follow the show's Critique by Values model to learn how Ryan and Syed experienced each of the phases of product experience: Encounter Decision Purchase Initial Use Longitudinal Use

This is not a review of the car as much as it is a conversation about people's transportation needs and how the Model 3 fit into their current lives. Of course, aspects of the car are discussed throughout. As usual, we leave no stone unturned in a detailed, people-centered discussion unhindered by commercials.

You can find Ryan at his YouTube channel, which includes track day footage of his Model 3: https://www.youtube.com/user/Ryephile/featured

You can find Syed at his website at: https://www.syedibrahim.me/

Dec 20 2019

1hr 16mins

Play

DC139 WordCast: Paul Fitts, his Law, and his List

Podcast cover
Read more

Dr. Rebecca Grier joins Tim Keirnan for a wordcast episode about Fitts' Law and Fitts' List. Who was Paul Fitts and how did this legendary psychologist impact our design professions to this day?

In a beautiful bit of synchronicity, Wired magazine published this excellent article about Fitts and Chapanis solving a design problem on the B-17 Flying Fortress during WWII.: https://www.wired.com/story/how-dumb-design-wwii-plane-led-macintosh/

Dr. Grier recommends the following links to use in our understanding of Fitts' work: https://www.interaction-design.org/literature/article/fitts-law-tracking-users-clicks

https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/The-information-capacity-of-the-human-motor-system-Fitts/634c9fde5f1c411e4487658ac738dcf18d98ea8d

https://fampeople.com/cat-paul-fitts

https://psychology.wikia.org/wiki/Paul_Fitts

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10111-011-0188-1

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2351978915006423

https://www.deepdyve.com/lp/wiley/paul-m-fitts-XSLBZF59k5

You can find Dr. Grier at https://www.linkedin.com/in/rebecca-grier-ux/

Nov 24 2019

32mins

Play

DC138 Conversation: The Buzzwordification of UX #2

Podcast cover
Read more

Jared Spool and Dana Chisnell join Tim Keirnan for a conversation about what Tim is calling the "buzzwordification" of UX. Has the increasing notoriety of this profession label helped us? Has it hindered us? Maybe it's a balance of pro and con. Maybe we just need to meet in a rental car in a parking garage somewhere in Dearborn and hash it out.

Jared can be found at User Interface Engineering and the Center Centre school. Check the UIE site for his upcoming appearances in a city near you.

Dana can be found at the Center for Civic Design. She is also, among many other wonderful things, the co-author of the legendary Handbook of Usability Testing 2nd Edition. She travels, too. Meet her if you can.

This is the second in a series of indeterminate length. While not linked in any way beside the topic, you may also be interested in listening to the first conversation in the series with Serena Rosenhan and Keith Instone.

Sep 13 2019

39mins

Play

DC137 Critique: The Brilliant Mundane of the E-SDS KVM Switch

Podcast cover
Read more

Mike Velasco joins Timothy Keirnan to critique the E-sds HDMI 2 Port KVM Switch Box. This item enables the use of two computers with a shared keyboard (K), video monitor (V), and mouse (M). The holistic excellence of this product is surprising.

When a company does the mundane as well as this product, it shows what can be done with all details gotten right. From its excellent user interface, to its rugged build quality, to its beautiful packaging, to its well-written and well-illustrated documentation, E-SDS did everything right. This is what a good team can accomplish when value, rather than cost, is the focus for the customer. It also proves that goods made in China can be of terrific quality. Even the sales entry on Amazon.com is done extraordinarily well and ,while this show does not have nor want affiliate links, we’re going to put the Amazon link here so you can see how well the catalog entry was done. It has all the photos and text one would need to make a good decision. https://www.amazon.com/Supports-Auto-scan-Hot-Key-Netware-HDMI1-4v/dp/B07DFFFPR7?ref_=bl_dp_s_web_11891183011

Aug 09 2019

33mins

Play

DC136 Interview: Paul Axente on UX in Romania and Everywhere

Podcast cover
Read more

Paul Axente, host of meetup group UX City and producer of the new Design Conversations podcast, joins Tim Keirnan for a wide-ranging discussion about UX in Romania and other topics, including: * UX City's purpose and meetings * Paul's unique route to a UX career * The Design Conversations podcast * Dark patterns in online retail * Concerns about Amazon's long-term effects on customers and communities * Paul's reservations about "corporate command" in the design process * Ethics of design * Customer experience of the video game industry (it's bad) but the promise of independent gaming companies who design for great games and for customers instead of only to make money. * The trap of people confusing tools with design skills. "What is the best tool for design? YOU are the best tool for design."

If you are in Romania (and even if you're not!), look up UX City here: https://www.uxcity.net/

You can find the Design Conversations podcast in many places, including UX City.net and https://www.buzzsprout.com/245555

Jun 30 2019

56mins

Play

DC135 Profession Labels for "Designers of Stuff" with Dave MR

Podcast cover
Read more

Dave Mitropoulos-Rundus returns to talk with Tim Keirnan about labels for our field. This continues our long-running friendly discussion about what we call our profession and why, and is there a difference--or should there be--between User Experience and Customer Experience? Dave appreciates the terminology differences whereas Tim wonders why we make such fine distinctions when at the root level we're all  "Designers of Stuff".

Kelly Goto's excellent 2018 article: https://www.gotoresearch.com/2018/04/11/x-marks-the-spot-in-experience-design-thinking-ux-vs-cx-vs-service-design/

Jared Spool's excellent article published the day we recorded this episode. I think Jared's a mind reader! https://articles.uie.com/ux-and-cx-same-language-different-dialects/

NOTE: Tim regrets interrupting Dave too much in a shocking lapse of bad hosting etiquette...he was hopped up on cough syrup at the time of this recording, which you can hear in his deep head cold voice breaking worse than Peter's in that episode of The Brady Bunch. https://tv.avclub.com/the-brady-bunch-dough-re-mi-1798222209

May 13 2019

36mins

Play

DC134 The Buzzwordification of UX (1 of ?)

Podcast cover
Read more

Keith Instone and Serena Rosenhan both return to the show for an episode about UX and "buzzwordification". The last 3-4 years have seen a big rise in the use UX terminology in the media and among coworkers. What are the advantages and disadvantages for UX practitioners now that UX has become popular beyond academia and professional societies? Tim Keirnan sets up the roundtable discussion and the wisdom pours out of these two veteran UX professionals.

The fireplace crackling gets a bit loud at points but plying guests with food, drink, and fireplace ambience is part of our recording process. You can find Serena at www.linkedin.com/in/serenarosenhan

You can find Keith at https://www.linkedin.com/in/keithinstone/

Mar 14 2019

1hr 4mins

Play

DC133 Wordcast: Minimum Viable Product with Syed Ibrahim

Podcast cover
Read more

Syed Ibrahim returns to the show to talk with Tim about his side project, Shoutouts.app. Syed's story of creating this web application is a terrific example of doing a minimum viable product. He candidly shares both advantages and disadvantages of releasing an MVP, and walks us through the details of having an idea, acting on it to create something that works at a basic level for a specific audience, and getting it out there to continue learning and enhancing it. You can find Syed at https://www.syedibrahim.me

One of the best definitions of MVP is from Frank Robinson who created the term around 2000, see http://www.syncdev.com/minimum-viable-product/

Feb 24 2019

41mins

Play

DC132 Critique: Fiskars StaySharp Max reel mower

Podcast cover
Read more

Ben Woods joins Tim Keirnan for a single point perspective on the Fiskars StaySharp Max reel mower. Needing neither gasoline nor electricity, this lawnmower is completely powered by the user to cut the lawn.

Ben discusses the values that led to his wanting this mower and his experience with it over several summer months of use. As usual we follow the critique structure to learn his experience with

  • Encounter
  • Decision
  • Purchase
  • Out of the Box
  • Longitudinal Use

Ben can be found at www.dbenwoods.com.

Dec 16 2018

44mins

Play

DC131 Interview: Fire Engine Design with Chief Dan Phillips

Podcast cover
Read more

Fire Department Chief Dan Phillips joins Tim Keirnan for a discussion about designing the new fire engine for Plymouth Township, Michigan. How does a fire department decide which features are most needed, most wanted, and affordable for a given budget and for the the engine's coverage area?

Unlike most passenger cars, a new fire engine is custom built and takes ten months to deliver. Their cost is over half a million US$. The pressure is on a department to get it right, because the service life of a fire engine is 15 years active duty and 5 additional years in reserve. The new engine balances several values: * Provide safety for the local citizens and their property * Provide safety of the firefighters who use the truck every day * Provide good financial stewardship of limited public resources to get the best solution for the budget.

You can see our Public Safety Committee's short documentary videos on the obsolete current fire engines at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClTidKC6ZDUJVLoWedD5_gA

Our first new fire engine is a Pierce Enforcer. Check out Pierce's website for the Enforcer and other models they make: https://www.piercemfg.com/

Thank you to the men and women working in fire departments everywhere.

Oct 28 2018

53mins

Play

DC130 Interview: Giles Colborne, Author of Simple and Usable 2nd Edition

Podcast cover
Read more

Author Giles Colborne returns to Design Critique to talk with Tim Keirnan about the new second edition of Simple and Usable: Web, Mobile, and Interaction Design.

Simple and Usable is one of the best books on UX we've owned in our careers. The contents are simple and usable just as the title promises, and this is one book that both practitioners and stakeholders will benefit from reading.

Giles and Tim talk for 40 minutes about various topics including

  • Giles' career having progressed along with the UX profession across the decades, moving from basic website design to service design to organizational design.
  • The physical design of the book reflects the theme, and the publisher did not stray from the successful book design of the first edition.
  • How "get out of the office" is still of prime importance today and the crucial importance of field research with our users.
  • Types of users Giles has observed in his career: experts, willing adopters, mainstreamers.
  • The seductive danger of relying on expert users in our designs.
  • How Alan Cooper's method of Personas has been undermined by some practitioners' use of person-less personas when they haven't even talked with or observed actual users. How this risks the integrity of the design profession as much as a user-less usability test would.
  • Working with stakeholders on design projects. Being teacher or facilitator as opposed to "persuader".
  • Don't rush into design. Understanding what's core takes time.

Simple and Usable can be found at its entry on publisher Pearson/NewRiders site.

Aug 20 2018

43mins

Play

DC129 Critique: Milwaukee Vertical Toolbox

Podcast cover
Read more

Mike Velasco joins Tim Keirnan for a critique of the Milwaukee 13" Jobsite Work Box. This tool box is oriented vertically in contrast with conventional tool box designs, which provides both advantages and disadvantages. While Mike enjoys the design and uses his tool box regularly, Tim has not been as impressed despite the numerous positives of the product's design and construction. This is why we do the show! Good designs of even "simple" products like a tool box cannot always please every user; people are so different.

As usual, we structure our critique around the following points: * Encounter * Decision * Purchase * Initial Impression (out of the box) * Longitudinal review

You can find the tool box at Milwaukee's site here: https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Products/Storage-Solutions/48-22-8010

Note that product photography usually involves very bright lighting, and in this case Tim was not expecting the interior to be as dark as  the product photos appeared. The photo on the Design Critique blog page is not using a flash for a more accurate representation of what a user sees when looking into the box for tools along the bottom.

Jun 10 2018

28mins

Play

DC128 Interview: Gene Duarte, Industrial Designer at Mychanic

Podcast cover
Read more

Industrial designer Gene Duarte joins Tim Keirnan for a discussion about the Pod Light and the Blade Multi Light, two of Gene's designs for Mychanic. As Head of Product Development, Gene tells the story behind the designs of these two creative and usable reinterpretations of the shop light. Tim has used them successfully for ten months and explains why they serve his needs in the garage and the house so well. Well done, Mychanic You can find Gene's Pod Light and Blade MultiLight at http://mychanic.com

In the photo above, the magnetic base of the Pod Light is shown with the paint-safe sticker showing. Also, note the packaging of the Pod Light with the included batteries clearly obvious.

Apr 25 2018

49mins

Play

Update: Molly Fuller Design's Indiegogo Campaign

Podcast cover
Read more

Molly Fuller from episode 127 returns to tell us about her Indiegogo campaign to fund development of more stylish and affordable compression clothing for teens with autism and sensory disorders. Check it out at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/molly-fuller-design-clothing/x/16724313#/

and

http://www.mollyfuller.design

Apr 11 2018

4mins

Play

DC127 Interview: Molly Fuller on Medical Fashion Design

Podcast cover
Read more

Molly Fuller joins Tim Keirnan to discuss creating stylish clothing for teens with autism spectrum disorder or other sensory needs. Her clothing designs use compression as a form of deep pressure for comfort and relaxation. Medical clothing does not have to look “medical” and she tells us about her interest in fashion design in school, and her tying it together with her career in medical service design, including working at the famous Mayo Clinic.

You can learn more about Molly and her products at http://www.mollyfuller.design

Molly is "on tour" this March and April! You can see her at the following events: March 25th - 30th: National Alliance for Caregiving, San Francisco, CA April 10th: Design of Medical Devices Conference, UM Minneapolis April 14th: Fraser Walk for Autism, Mall of America, Minneapolis April 21st: Pickin for Autism, Amsterdam Bar, St. Paul

Mar 21 2018

31mins

Play

DC126 Critique: Toro and Craftsman Snowblowers

Podcast cover
Read more

Let it snow! This episode finds Tim and guest cohost Mike Velasco talking about the customer experience of snowblowers. Or snowthrowers. Tim relates his newbie snowblower customer experience with the Toro SnowMaster 724 QXE while Mike relates his long history with snowblowers in general and his Craftsman 881730.

In a world where the word "innovation" is all too often misused by advertisers and Silicon Valley snake oil salespeople, the Toro is truly innovative. The light weight, the joystick for controlling the chute, the new design for moving the snow, the nimble handling, and the accelerator in its handle are unlike anything Tim found in other brands and models. Its speed is also impressive.

As mentioned in the outro, the website movingsnow.com is a terrific resource for learning about snowblowers, and thewirecutter.com also had a good review of the Toro. https://movingsnow.com/2015/2015-toro-snowmaster-724-qxe-824-qxe-picture-review/

https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-snow-blowers/

https://movingsnow.com/2017/2017-craftsman-snow-blowers-whats-new-one-best/

Feb 28 2018

53mins

Play

DC125 Critique: Reizen Jumbo Talking Calculator

Podcast cover
Read more

Accessibility expert Mike Elledge joins Tim Keirnan for an out-of-the-box critique of the Reizen 12-Digit Jumbo Talking Calculator. This calculator has many features that make it a good choice for people with low vision or coordination troubles, with its oversized buttons and display and its ability to speak values entered and calculated.

However, Mike finds opportunities for improvement, including the typeface chosen for the buttons, the very small and distant minus symbol and other symbols put across the top of the LCD, and more.

We close this episode with email from listener Costan Boiangiu.

Dec 31 2017

33mins

Play

DC124 Critique: Ford FiestaST

Podcast cover
Read more

Eric Penn and Ryan Claffey join Timothy Keirnan for a critique of the Ford FiestaST. We never pretend to be objective on Design Critique, as we are too honest. We admit our biases so you know where our opinions are coming from. In this product category, our bias is small sporty cars with less mass and great handling that let you feel what's going on. The Ford FiestaST is a hot hatchback that won our undying admiration from the first drive.

Tim calls it the American MINI Cooper, and he ought to know. It's as close as we'll ever get to driving a Labrador Retriever puppy. Tim talks in detail with Eric and Ryan about their customer experiences with the FiestaST, including

* Encounter * Decision * Purchase * Initial use * Longitudinal use

Eric's first drive of the 7th Generation Fiesta on Belle Isle was captured for posterity.

Ryan's Protege Garage is also well worth checking out.

Nov 21 2017

1hr 50mins

Play

DC123 Critique: Motorola MotoG4 Android Phone

Podcast cover
Read more

Syed Ibrahim joins Tim Keirnan for a critique of the Motorola MotoG4 smart phone. While the G4 was touted as an affordable, "pure, clutter-free version of Android", Tim's experience was anything but pure Android. Syed's expert Android wisdom provides a counterpoint to Tim's confusion and disappointment as the discussion ranges from the pluses and minuses of the G4 to the shortcomings of various reviews of the phone when it came out. Our conclusion is that, if the botched implementation of the G4's so-called "pure" Android experience is bad, the coverage of the phone in the traditional tech media was even more sloppy. How is one to shop effectively for a good Android phone in light of reviews like this? Syed has suggestions.

Thanks to Tom Merritt for his report on Lenovo switching all its phones to "stock Android". The link to that particular episode of Daily Tech News is at http://www.dailytechnewsshow.com/dtns-3088-left-to-their-phone-devices/

and the license for distributing this excerpt, unmodified, is https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

We won't waste your time linking to all the crappy reviews of the G4 that missed the point in so many ways on this unfortunate phone.

Aug 22 2017

46mins

Play

DC122 Critique: Garmin BaseCamp, Plus Email from Listener Costan

Podcast cover
Read more

We return to the Garmin Nuvi 2598LMTH to try Garmin's companion application for it, BaseCamp. Aravindh Baskaran is back to help Tim Keirnan try to create a customized commute route in to the office and upload the route to the GPS unit. This is a very informal usability test and Tim wanted Aravindh around because the first time Tim tried to do this, he was not successful. Aravindh has used Base Camp to create car club routes on back roads with the Windows version of BaseCamp, so he is acting as informal usability test moderator. The initial use usability problems Tim encountered were nothing compared to the design failure he found transferring the route to the Garmin GPS unit and using it. If you would like to follow along, you can download a Windows or Macintosh version of BaseCamp at Garmin's website: www.garmin.com Listener Costan Boiangiu's excellent email about the UX of GPS devices kicks off this episode, and the informal usability test critique of BaseCamp starts about 15 minutes in.

Jun 30 2017

54mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
7
3
1
1
1

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!

Meticulously put together

By AnkiJB - Oct 26 2015
Read more
Their Oct 13 episode was wonderful to listen to. Worth subscribing the podcast!!!