- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (February 13, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780596154783
- ISBN-13: 978-0596154783
- ASIN: 059615478X
- Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.6 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #928,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Effective UI: The Art of Building Great User Experience in Software 1st Edition
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About the Author
Jonathan Anderson helped found EffectiveUI before becoming managing editor of UX Magazine, an online resource for user experience professionals and enthusiasts. In this role, Jonathan develops and oversees original content creation and sourcing that explores the maturing field of UX and details industry trends and emerging technologies.
John McRee is a lead information architect for EffectiveUI who brings more than a decade of experience to designing highly intuitive and engaging user interfaces. Specializing in design process management, user research, information architecture and interaction design, John has designed software for a diverse group of clients, including many Fortune 500 companies.
Robb Wilson is co-owner of UX Magazine and a technology research consultant for many Fortune 500 companies, including Qwest and National Geographic. An active member in the UX community, Robb's work affords him the unique opportunity to meld business strategy with creative processes and emerging technologies. He has worked as a creative executive at Time Warner and is an industry thought leader, providing innovative insight on emerging technologies and trends. Robb has founded four successful technology companies.
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However, the book is more of a book for managers to understand what is necessary to create a product with great user experience -- that it is a matter of creating the culture from the beginning and it's not really something you can just throw in later.
I dug this book because I wanted to explore the headspace, perspective, context and helpful flows that lend themselves to building the right experience for the right users.
Just like the designers, developers, architects and business-heads I work with, my job includes working to ensure the right people are on board with the best approaches and the best solutions. For me, this book took a super-realistic approach towards the challenges and opportunities that come with driving to get the right UX solutions.
It's not crazy to say that building software that performs is really difficult. That said, designing and building software that performs and offers the right experience comes with a whole different level of difficulty (it's way harder). This book definitely isn't a step-by-step manual - there's no 2+2=4 kind of formula for good UX.
The way I see it, there are enough "how-to" books out there if I wanted to learn more about building software that performs. There are however very few books that offer insight into successful approach and philosophy behind setting the business/design/development table for building the right experience for the right users - this is one of those rare books. I found helpful (and still find it helpful) because I care about UX and not just impressive tech and performance.
Funny, because I hear many designers and developers complain about how frustrated they are with mangers that don't understand how to manage software products towards user experience. Perhaps the negative reviewers would find value from the book if they handed it to their boss so everyone is on the same page.
The most valuable review comes from Ira Laefsky, who is an independent expert in the field..
If you are familiar with iterative development practices, agile, the perils of waterfall, requirements analysis, stakeholder relations, team building and the overall software project management process, then you will find nothing new in this book. The first few chapters read like a marketing brochure for the Effective UI consulting group. If you know little of these areas, or have a manager/stakeholder that you want to try to convert, then this book might provide some value as a high level introduction to software project management.
To me, this was very disappointing. I have dozens and dozens of O'Reilly books, decades of SW dev experience from C-level on down, and this is the first O'Reilly book that I've purchased that I would send back (if that just wasn't worth the time/trouble to do so). I'll probably just give it to the Goodwill charity, and hope that someone can benefit from it.
With it's current title, I rate this barely as a 1, and then only because they included some interesting, albeit barely relevant, quotes from Clausewitz and Sun Tzu. If they had changed the title to "Effective PM - An Introduction to Software Development management/practices" then it might rate a 3.
O'Reilly dropped the ball on this one, IMO.
To add insult to injury the wide margins, large font, and simplistic and unnecessary figures lean dangerously toward insulting.