Design.

Ben Logan
1 February 2013

Twitter may well be one of the World’s leading social media platforms, but long loading times and a sometimes cumbersome interface have tended to leave some serious dents in the network’s usability rating. This could be set to change however, with a few vital updates currently being rolled out. From now on, rather than having to navigate to a different page to view media content, photos from a profile page or search result will bring up a larger version of the image to the right of the page. In addition, videos from Vine, YouTube, Vimeo and other Twitter partners will…

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Ben Logan
28 January 2013

Microsoft’s most recent iteration of their Windows operating system is now three months old. As has almost become a tradition, complaints and some harsh criticism met the launch, so let’s see if the much maligned version 8 release can salvage some good will. Sadly, there have been no improvements to the software’s usability. The revised UI throws everything you’d normally expect away, and the lack of the iconic Start button is particularly alienating Microsoft aficionados. Some have gone so far as to say that UI stands for “Unintuitive” in the case of Windows 8, however those who are familiar with…

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Ben Logan
19 November 2012

Despite being faster and more stable than its predecessors, Microsoft’s new Windows 8 operating system has come under-fire from leading usability expert Jakob Nielson. Hiding features, introducing two separate working environments and the introduction of applications with an extraordinary low information density are just a few of the issues that Nielson, who holds a Ph.D. in human-computer interaction, has highlighted. Top of the list is the confusion caused by having the tablet-orientated Start screen and the more PC orientated desktop screen available on the same device.  Described as “a prescription for usability problems”, Nielson commented on the need for users…

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Ben Logan
5 September 2012

The Baymard Institute have been taking a look at the Top 100 grossing e-commerce sites and have today released their results, containing over three thousand examples of the best and worst practises on the web today. The report contains almost a thousand screenshots, with annotation and insights into how many of the world’s most successful sites have confronted the e-comm checkout design challenge. Some of the results will come as a surprise, for example 44% of sites that grossed more than $1 billion scored lower than their less successful competitors, and about half of the sites tested were found to…

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Ben Logan
1 August 2012

It’s always interesting to see what a difference ten years can make in the world of web technology, so with the Olympics now upon us, we took a look at the Events website to see how it compares to that of the Winter Olympics 2002 site. The London 2012 website closely adheres to the Homepage usability guidelines set forth by Danish usability consultant Jakob Nielsen.  This in itself is very significant, as Nielsen had previously rated the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics site very poorly. The current site is vastly improved in terms of accessibility, however it loses points for…

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Ben Logan
21 June 2012

According to the latest study by not-for-profit IT services provider Eduserv, when it comes to usability, animal charities are leading the pack. The 2012 Charities Usability Report rated websites from poor to exceptional. It evaluated forty major charities across the UK in sectors including aid, education, animal welfare, children and health charities. Eduserv analysed usability metrics such as ease of making a donation, prominence of links to donate and overall ease of website navigation. Animal charities came out on top for most criteria, including having the most ‘donation friendly’ websites. In contrast, some of the most high profile household names…

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