Design for Web 2.0 OCT 06 2004
Jason Fried, Jeff Veen, and I did a workshop yesterday on Design for Web 2.0. In preparing for the informal chat we had among ourselves and with the audience, we prepared a list of questions to consider. There's about 15 of them, presented here unedited without context or answers:
- Right now, Web design feels like talking to the del.icio.us API and blending Flickr RSS with Upcoming iCal subscriptions. What happens when design(ers) has little to do with what's on the page?
- Blogs democratized publishing, now "tags" could be considered to democratize information architecture. What's behind this? Are powerful tools in the hands of millions really better than well-trained experts?
- How do we justify the high upfront costs of doing user research? Is there a magic bullet formula that will tell us if it's worth it?
- I love quick wins. Find something you can fix in two weeks. Measure how it works now. Fix it. See how the numbers change. Repeat until you run out of stuff. Why is this so shocking to corporate Web sites?
- It feels to me that IT departments still operate under the assumption that technology is a precious resource that should be guarded carefully and trickled out. This is like a pair of handcuffs to most Web teams. Why do so many enterprises treat their Web sites like shrink-wrapped software and not publications?
- Can usability drive innovation? What's the balance between giving the user what they need but also giving them what they do not yet know that they need?
- How do you go about designing for groups? When the "user" is a collection of people rather than a single person?
- Do brochureware sites still have a place on today's Web?
- What does user experience mean in the context of cross-media services? How do you keep it consistent when you're using T-Mobile's interface to email your photos to Flickr or updating your blog with your TiVo using your Blackberry as an input device?
- home pages -> sites -> "posts" -> ????
- Q for Veen re: your content management is a process, not a software package mantra. Is there a lesson here for software in general?
- How would you design a web-based application differently today than 3 years ago? What do we have in our design war chests today that is capable of making the experience feel 3-years more mature?
- Do you think design "talk" is too focused on technological achievement ("Look mom, no tables!") these days, or is it a step in the right direction?
- Should one design fit all? Should designers worry about their web designs working on alternate devices by default, or should each device have its own unique design?
- What is your feeling on Personas? Do they really help drive the visual design process or are they just process for process sake? What does it really mean to know your audience might be represented by a 30-something single female who likes to watch Friends, prefers paying her bills by mail, gets coffee every morning at Starbucks, and has a 56K connection at home?
- Who should we follow into the Web 2.0? What are some of the best examples of interaction design today?
I've opened the comments if you'd like to discuss any of these questions amongst yourselves.