UX

12 Articles

Website: PIC Photographic Imaging College

In 2012 I created a new website for the Photographic Imaging College (PIC) in Melbourne. The website redesign was an extension of the rebrand I did for the college in 2011. The brief for the new website can be distilled into two points: The website must be a comprehensive information source for potential students in their last year of high-school, and The website must be the go-to information source for currently enrolled students Contrary to initially logical ideas of an image-heavy design (for a photographic college) and I decided on a design more akin news site than a gallery.

Improving the chopping board

Some time ago I was using my beloved big-arse wooden chopping board and I had an idea to improve it, and not by a trivial amount. How to you improve on a chopping board? Well, I’ve seen many attempts in my relatively short travels. Some have been small and non-essential but genuine, while many have been, in my opinion, gimmicks. The chopping board What is a chopping board for? For me, it is a way to chop and slice food in preparation for cooking a meal without dulling the edge on my knives.

UX goofs (vol 1)

Sometimes I get annoyed by usability/UX glitches — well, more than sometimes actually — but sometimes I get annoyed enough to take 30 mins of my time to document them on this website. Why? Because it should work better. So here we go, UX goofs, vol.1. Adobe Flash Player version checker flat-out lies I use Little Snitch to keep certain apps and services from reaching out into the matrix. In Adobe Flash checker update service is one of them. Every so often it launches and says “Checking for update” (or similar) for a few seconds, then returns “Adobe Flash Player is up to date on your system.” Which is a lie.

Website: MANZA

While living in Malaysia from 2010–2012, I designed a replacement website for the Malaysian Australian New Zealand Association. MANZA is a volunteer-run association whose main purpose is to help newly arrives expats ease into Malaysian life. The MANZA website was my first practical application of Information Architecture and content auditing. As a volunteer-run organisation, the then-current website was a mess of handed-over files, message, and content, not to mention design. The site was built and maintained by inexperienced volunteer expats wanting to led a hand, and as such was desperate for a redesign.

No Flash

Prelude I’ve recently reinstalled the OS and all software on my MacBook Air. This time I’m going to really try and not install Flash Player. Last time I did this, I eventually folded and installed it, even after trying ClickToFlash. It was simply easier to have Flash Player installed and not deal with clicking all over the place. Indeed, my new setup has me manually loading any flash pages into Google Chrome which is even less easy (Chrome has a built-in Flash Player of its own).

The new gold standard of UX blogs

A great friend of mine has started a blog about UX design (and non-design). UX, where X is a kiss. Check it out because she knows her sh*t. And I know she knows her sh*t because sometimes I think I know my sh*t, but then I tell her about the sh*t I know, and she replies with the sh*t she knows, which immediately makes me question whether the sh*t I know really is the sh*t, y’know? If you’re into UX, love stories, and possibly unicorns, UX where X is a kiss is the sh*t you should subscribe to.

The remarkable design of the conical straw hat

On a recent trip to Vietnam, Kelly and I splurged on a pair of straw hats (US$2 each) to keep the sun off our faces. I loved the straw hat immediately — the novelty was great; now I could be mistaken for a local! (heh), and it did indeed keep the sun off our faces. But I soon found out, that’s not the only benefit of the age old conical straw hat. In fact, this hat has at least seven benefits over and above protecting us from the scorching sun (of which there was plenty) and the rain (of which there was little).

Instagram feature requests x2 x1.25

Update Instagram have improved the filter selection in the 2.0.1 update. It’s not what I suggested, but it works a helluva lot better. I suggested removing inertia scrolling from the filter list, but instead, they’ve removed the looping scroll. The filter list is now finite, meaning you can quickly get to the end of the list, then select your filter (if it’s near the end). They’ve also now removed the automatic sliding of the chosen filter into the middle of the screen, meaning when you tap a filter, the list stays where you left it.