Articles & research papers


The Anatomy of a Design Decision

Webstock ’12: Jared Spool – The Anatomy of a Design Decision from Webstock on Vimeo.

What are the habits of highly effective design teams? The best designs come from not one, but hundreds of well-made decisions. The worst designs arise out of hundreds of poorly-made decisions. All that stands between you and a great design is the qualify of your decisions. Where do they come from?

For the last five years, UIE has been studying how designers make their decisions. When do they use outside information, such as research about their users? When do they go with their gut instinct? When do the designers look to past decisions and the lessons they’ve learned?

What they found is interesting. In this presentation, Jared does an entertaining deep dive into the gut instinct of the best designers (without looking at all the gooey parts). You’ll learn five styles of decision making, from Self Design to Experience-focused Design, and which style produces quality results.

Microsoft Research

Microsoft Research is dedicated to conducting both basic and applied research in computer science and software engineering. Its goals are to enhance the user experience on computing devices, reduce the cost of writing and maintaining software, and invent novel computing technologies. Microsoft Research also collaborates openly with colleges and universities worldwide to advance the field of computer science.

Microsoft Research has more than 800 researchers, including some of the world’s finest computer scientists, sociologists, psychologists, mathematicians, physicists, and engineers, working in labs and centers around the world.

Microsoft Research has labs in Beijing, Cambridge, India, New England, Redmond and Silicon Valley.

Microsoft Research

Using Closed Card-Sorting to Evaluate Information Architectures

A technique using closed card-sorting to evaluate candidate information architectures for a web site is described. Participants in an online card-sorting study are randomly directed to one of the architectures being evaluated. Each participant is shown the same cards but different categories to sort them into.

The basic data collected is simply which cards each user put into which groups. For any one architecture being tested, the data show what percentage of the participants put each card into each group. A better architecture is one where the participants were more consistent with each other in terms of which groups they put each of the cards into. The basic ‘score’ proposed for each card is the percentage associated with the ‘winning’ group (i.e., the group with the highest percentage)—the higher that percentage is, the better. A consistency score for each architecture tested can then be calculated by taking an average of these percentages across all the cards. A technique for correcting this score when the different architectures have different numbers of groups is also described.

Using Closed Card-Sorting to Evaluate Information Architectures (PDF, 86 kb)

Danah Boyd’s Research (on Social Media) page

Danah Boyd is a Social Media Researcher at Microsoft Research New England and a Fellow at Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society. She recently completed her PhD at the School of Information (iSchool) at the University of California (Berkeley). Her research examined social media, youth practices, tensions between public and private, social network sites, and other intersections between technology and society.

Danah Boyd’s Research (on Social Media) page

Papers from CHI 2009 Mobile User Experience Research: Challenges, Methods & Tools

Browse from this list of papers by participants and program committee members for CHI 2009 Mobile User Experience Research: Challenges, Methods & Tools

Papers from CHI 2009 Mobile User Experience Research: Challenges, Methods & Tools

Sheena S. Iyengar’s Research page

Author of the book in progress, How we Choose: The Subtext of Life book, The Art of Choosing, and one of the world’s leading experts on choice, Sheena S. Iyengar is a full professor in the Management Division of the Columbia Business School. For the past 10 years, she has taught Leadership at Columbia, earning an Innovation in the Teaching Curriculum award. She has taught not only MBA students but also executives, most recently as an instructor selected by Columbia University’s President’s Office to attend the World Economics Forum in Geneva, Switzerland.

Professor Iyengar received a dual degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1992, consisting of a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School of Business and a B.A. in psychology with a minor in English from the College of Arts and Sciences. In 1997 she completed her Ph.D. in social psychology from Stanford University. Her dissertation, entitled “Choice and its Discontents,” received the prestigious Best Dissertation Award for 1998 from the Society of Experimental Social Psychology.

Throughout her career, her research has not only appeared in many respected academic journals but is also regularly cited in the media, including periodicals such as Fortune and Time magazines, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal, on National Public Radio, and in popular books including Blink by Malcolm Gladwell and The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz. Sheena S. Iyengar is currently writing her first book, an exploration of the mysteries of choice in everyday life, to be published by Twelve, an imprint of Hachette Book Group.

Sheena S. Iyengar’s Research page

Experimenting with UniFace: A Tool for Remote Usability Testing of Icons

Katre D. S. (2004). Experimenting with UniFace: A Tool for Remote Usability Testing of Icons, ACM-SIGCHI-SI National Usability Conference Easy 2004, Bangalore, India.

Experimenting with UniFace: A Tool for Remote Usability Testing of Icons (PDF)

HP Research

HP Labs conducts scientific research to address challenges and opportunities facing their customers and society in the next decade. Their research is conducted in 23 labs and is focused on eight broad themes:

  1. Analytics
  2. Cloud
  3. Content transformation
  4. Digital commercial print
  5. Immersive interaction
  6. Information management
  7. Intelligent infrastructure
  8. Sustainability

HP Research.

Nithya Sambasivan’s research page

Nithya Sambasivan’s research page

Nimmi Rangaswamy’s research page

Nimmi Rangaswamy is an Associate Researcher in the Technology for Emerging Markets Group at Microsoft Research India in Bangalore. She is a social scientist, with a background in Social Anthropology.

She received her M.Phil from the Delhi School of Economics and PhD from the University of Mumbai. Her doctoral thesis analyzed a variety of print propaganda in Tamil politics as instantiation of broader regional political culture.

Before joining MSR India, in 2005, she lectured for several years at colleges in Delhi and Mumbai and have been part of the editorial team for the journal Economic and Political Weekly.

Nimmi Rangaswamy’s Research page