Monday, June 20, 2005

Usability Testing in Practice

  • What's your information regarding the usability testing?
  • Does any of you proceed a usability testing in his/her organization?
  • What kind of testing? (paper prototype/operational prototype/ functional website (if internet websites) / else.

    Kindly share your experience and tell us more, let's discuss it together and find out its benefits.

    Go a head and post your comments .. :)

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Usability Testing Highlights

  • You have to clarify: we are here to test the solution interface not the user and here you have to encourage the user to talk aloud as much as possible
  • You usually want to answer questions like these..
    - Do users complete a task successfully?
    - If so, how fast do they do each task?
    - Is that fast enough to satisfy them?
    - What paths do they take in trying?
    - Do those paths seem efficient enough to them?
    - Where do they stumble? What problems do they have? Where do they get confused?
    - What words or paths are they looking for that are not now on the site?
  • Types of Questions to Ask..
    - Do users realize, without being told, whose site they are working with just from looking at the home page?
    - Do users click through pages or do they use search?
    - What words do they try in search?
    - What do they choose from the search results?
    - How do they react to the download time for specific pages?
    - If they abandon a shopping cart before buying, when do they stop and why?
  • Iterative Testing Works Best: Usability testing is an iterative process that involves testing the site and then using the test results to change the site to better meet users' needs. The best process is to try out a prototype with a few users, fix it, and test it again.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Why Internationalization is Important?

What's internationalization?
To Improve the quality and the usability of a solution in international markets- if website- the effort to make the website available to everyone regardless the location.
By the following:

  • Use the proper language
    -Character encoding (Unicode is a standard character encoding for all languages that’s now widely adapted)
    -Facilitating multilingual web pages and websites.
    >bi-directional text
    >ruby annotation (character annotations used to clarify the pronunciation often added to ideographic scripts such as Japanese)
    >number formatting
  • Localization consideration
    -cultural sensitivity in graphics and text
    -flexible forms that allow different address and naming conventions
    -political sensitivities
  • Visual design based on the new technology and most recent style to match the most recent designing standards
  • Usability testing methods
  • Register in well known search engines and directories

Thursday, June 02, 2005

The Meaning of Accessibility

Accessibility in the context of the web means building a web that everyone is able to access, regardless of their level of physical or mental ability.
  • Consider users with motor deficiencies or cognitive disabilities or blindness
    -Motor deficiencies: keyboard navigator (shift-tap-enter) and access keys which are keyboard shortcuts that replace the need to use the mouse for navigation in browsers that support them. In Internet Explorer on Windows, you can press ALT + an access key (on Macintosh, you can press Control + an access key). Then press Enter to activate the link.

    -Cognitive disabilities: clear simple layout not relying too greatly on the user memorizing thing (Usability)
    -Blind users:
    >Screen magnifier
    >Common assistive technology called “screen readers’ which are browsers read the content of a website word-by-word

    Note: Flash in its last 2 versions can make its content accessible to use screen readers and keyboard navigator
  • Images, using alts for the most images are using in the website, Images used for headings are applied using style sheets – since the heading exists as text behind the graphic, alt attributes are unnecessary.
  • Colors, the site's font and background color combinations should be checked against the different color blindness conditions and ensured that all information is still clear.
  • Font sizes, should be able to change the size of the webpage to the user’s preference through his browser:
  • In Internet Explorer, from the browser’s tool: view / text size / and then preferred size.
  • In Netscape from the browser’s tool: view / text zoom / and then preferred percentage size.
    » Notes and References could be used in websites as standards grantee (Standards compliance): Level A compliance as specified by the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. The majority of Level AA and AAA requirements are also met.
    All pages validate as XHTML 1.0 Transitional and use structured semantic markup. The CSS also validates.