2011/8/4 Fons Adriaensen :
> LOL. 'Usability architects' ?
What's a "usability test" ?
Make some non-introduced users install,configure,use a (new) software
and see how far they come.
There's the hitch: Depending on which users you choose, results will differ.
Take a long MS Windows user and as a result, you're software is
unusable without a File MenuItem ;)
Anyway: Since this is something that actually happens, if any user
foreign to your software tries it,
the results might even be valuable !
Actually the conclusion for a usability test is somehow pre-known:
If you introduce anything new, unknown to the user, you have to
- explain it
- make it obvious
- use pop-up hints
- add context help and description
- all that, without steeling to much time from the user
- show only task-related items
- hide complexity
The usability test is a kind of indication then, how much you've
managed to strike
that requirement. (.. of explaining the software to the user, so
he/she is capable to install,configure,use it)
"True" usability testers should be aware of the problematic/issues and
take them into account.
'Usability architect' is a misspelling somehow:
First: The architects are the GUI designers, coders and developers.
Second: Experience shows: Usually it's NOT possible to
** Input from the user is important, because that's a whole different view ! **
IYAM, usability tests would be a real enrichment to the open software world,
but doing them right is difficult and time-intense. Thus known, common
user feedback in forums and mailing lists appears more appropriate here.
Before you release: Never forget to let your relatives
(aunt,grandma,..) install,configure,use the product.
If she/he succeeds without help, there's hope ;)
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