1. Read the article below and answer the following questions:
Smashing Magazine’s “Tale of A Top-10 App, Part 1: Idea And Design.” http://mobile.smashingmagazine.com/2013/07/04/top-ten-app-part-1-idea-and-design/
Answer the following questions:
- What is meant by the term Competitive Landscape?
Competitive Landscape is a form of analysis that helps a business identify its primary online and offline rivals. For example, a competitive landscape analysis might start with an attempt to identify and understand competitors, followed by an analysis of their strengths and weaknesses and how the target business can improve upon what its competition is doing. This term closely relates to the SWOT Analysis which is a technique for understanding your Strengths and Weaknesses, and for identifying both the Opportunities open to you and the Threats you face.
2.What is User Experience Mapping?
User Experience Mapping is an essential design tool to understand our product/service interactions from users’ point of view. One experience map is basically a visual representation that illustrates users’ flow (within a product or service) their needs, wants, expectations and the overall experience for a particular goal. UX mapping is very similar to a Customer Journey map, it’s a visual or graphic interpretation of the overall story from an individual’s perspective of their relationship with an organization, service, product or brand, over time and across channels.
3. What is meant by “Kill the Baby”?
“Kill the Baby” is referred to eliminating all non-essential ideas for features. According to the author, “Good design is more about subtraction than addition.” It’s all about finding the essential problems you want to solve and removing the features that are unrelated, inessential or unrealistic for the first version
4. What is skeuomorphism?
Skeuomorphism is the design concept of making items represented resemble their real-world counterparts. Skeuomorphism is commonly used in many design fields, including user interface (UI) and Web design, architecture, ceramics and interior design.5. Tell us what steps are included in the “Idea and Design” Process.
5. Tell us what steps are included in the “Idea and Design” Process
According to the author, the first step is to come up with an idea based on market research. Then conduct research up front to help define the problems that are attempting to be solved. Such as creating a Competitive Landscape, User Experience Mapping, Creating Personas’, and finally the persona’ experience map. The author then brainstormed ideas for possible features in which he then “Killed the Baby” by eliminating non-essential features.
Next, create a statement which helped focus development process. Such as, “An offline translation dictionary that gives instant access to words and definitions at 99¢ for multiple language pairs.” If the feature didn’t support this statement, it didn’t belong in 1.0.
Then, start sketching general ideas on how the various screens could flow together. Stick to sketches, and use tools such as POP to share ideas with remote team members and clients. The author used OmniGraffle to create a rough prototype of the interactions.
The goal for the next step is to not make the user think. Fix users’ problems with an intuitive and easy to use interface. In essence, your job is to free users from having to think about the interface and instead to focus on the content.
The next goal is to not make the user not work. People don’t like to work, so look for ways to save them from unnecessary keystrokes, taps and irrelevant information. Use OmniGraffle wireframe to that goal. Find a way to solve the problems of most apps by enabling users.
Think like a human. While touch interfaces have matured, and users no longer need interfaces to look like physical objects in order to relate to them, sometimes physical metaphors can set expectations and convey feelings that purely digital interfaces cannot.
Relentless exploration. The secret to amazing designs is a lot less about genius than about relentless exploration. Don’t stop once you’ve found a good solution. Keep going until you’ve exhausted the possibilities.
Of Photoshop And Xcode This is when things get really exciting. Your ideas start to become reality. This is the point when we design and code the actual elements that our users will touch. This stage is all about polish on all levels: interaction, usability and visual. This is when a good app becomes great.
Sketches and wireframes would provide a good outline, upon seeing things visually and playing with an actual coded prototype, or you can realize that you got it all wrong. When merely sketching, it is difficult to imagine the creative details that will take the app beyond being usable and into the realm of fun. Once working with visual metaphors, colors and textures, dreaming up fun details becomes much easier. This is all about polish, polish, polish, and it is the most rewarding and time-consuming stage of app development.
Establish the theme. Skeuomorphism can be useful, fun and powerful if wielded carefully and deliberately. Every app that contains buttons has skeuomorphism because buttons are borrowed straight from the real world. When used correctly, skeuomorphism provides much-needed affordances that help users instantly understand how an app works.
When working on the theme for the app, iterated like crazy on two or three of the main screens until you’re convinced that a certain look would work really well for the whole app.
Delight is in the details. Continue to flesh out all of the different screens, look for opportunities to delight users with details that would make the app enjoyable to use. Part of this is just about making the app look nice, but you can also delight users by adding a fun transition or make them laugh with some quirky copy, or save them work in surprising ways.
Designer and programmer: constant collaboration. Do not hand a programmer your design assets and expect a job well done. Not only do designers need to continually stay involved to ensure that their designs are implemented well, but using coded prototypes and testing them on users will inform the design in ways you can’t imagine. There is no substitute for testing a design and iterating on it.
Testing coded software exposes blatant weaknesses in the design that you may have never considered and shines a light on areas where details could be added to make the experience more enjoyable. Because of this, you might end up doing more design iterations after a coded prototype. Changes at this stage are costly but extremely necessary.
Gesture experiments. As you start to code your first prototype, Impending and Realmac Software launched an app named Clear. No buttons, just gestures. Love it or hate it, it makes a statement. It is minimalistic but users need to be taught about the gestures.
Try a number of approaches and a lot of usability testing to find major problems. The result can create a super-intuitive and simple app for beginners, full of gestures that make life easier for power users.
Testing. Make sure to get input on all aspects: usability, beauty, robustness. This included carrying out the following tasks: observed friends, family and various strangers use the app. The key thing here is to propose tasks and ask questions about what they are thinking, but never to answer their questions. Probe into why they are confused about something, and let them figure it out for themselves. Watch for body language that indicates confusion or frustration, and note not only whether they were able to accomplish a task, but how effortless and enjoyable their experience was. Sought expert design reviews from top Apple designers, leading usability experts and fellow developers at conferences such as SxSW and WWDC. Post screenshots to Dribbble to get feedback on visuals from leading designers around the world. Test the app in real-world contexts.
Icon. An app’s icon means a lot. It is the first impression most users will get of an app, and hope users will want to have it on their precious home screen.
Final Step: Launch It might not have every feature intended to put in, but the feature will be super-polished and ready for primetime.