Starting today, I've got a new job. I'll be working as User Experience Designer in Google's European Engineering Center in Zürich, Switzerland[GP:GoogleZRH]. Quite a change: a new job, a new city, a new country – with a somewhat similar, but also rather different language. Germans can easily be fooled into believing that things in Switzerland work just like they work in Germany because of a common cultural heritage and the language. Switzerland is not a member of the EU, for example, which means that we had to get stay and work permits etc. Lots of things had to be organized (and some still have not been dealt with properly): relocation, stay permit, health insurance, all the other insurances. Google was very supportive with these things. I'm very much looking forward to all the challenging projects that lie ahead , and I sincerely hope we'll manage to "arrive" and settle down in Zürich easily.
Kimmy Paluch over at paradymesolutions.com presents a nice write-up on what actually constitutes User Experience Design. These elements add to the overall idea of user experience:
- Interaction design
- Information architecture
- Human computer interaction
- Human factors engineering
- User interface design
Kimmy continues to say,
User experience is the culmination of all of these parts into one field. Although, user experience design does not wholly contain these fields (that is to say, some research and practices in each of these fields falls outside the realm of the user experience) it does serve to unite many of the principles so as to improve each of the facets of the user experience.
The following image nicely shows the interaction of the various disciplines:
The post additionally covers an evaluation of uxd as a form of design and some thoughts on the design process. Definitely worth reading!
Yesterday I paid my first visit to Slovenia's capital Ljubljana[GP:Ljubljana] to attend the "Interaktivni festival IF 2006" and to give a talk on the AOL Phone Box. Vuk ?osi?, whom I had met at the euroGel 2006, had asked me whether I wanted to deliver the talk and share some insights and information on a successful interaction design project, and I had decided to use the AOL Phone Box as an example. The AOL Phone Box is an ADSL 2+ modem with built-in Voice-over-IP (VoIP) functionality. It's based on a hardware platform from our hardware partner Sphairon; we have done the interaction design for the configuration Web Interface, the CD-based connection assistant and the built-in setup assistant. I'll go into more detail on this nice project in a later post. Vuk had asked me to prepare a 30-minute talk and be open to q&a for another fifteen minutes. I happily obliged, and we had a great session with lots of questions from the audience as to the design methodology, our usability evaluation methods, and metrics we would be using to determine the (economic) success level of the product. I feel grateful and deeply honored to have been invited to give this lecture, and I enjoyed my stay in beautiful Ljubljana with lots of highly motivated Internet professionals.