A few months ago I put up a (very) short survey asking readers what we can do to improve application help.  Here are the results: How would you describe your profession? Answer Votes Vote Count/Percentage Technical Writer   8 Votes(66%)…

Providing Sufficient Information In Validation Errors

Nearly all web usability experts agree that validation should happen in real-time, while the user is inputting data.  But the technique doesn’t guarantee a pleasant user experience. Take this hypothetical project management app as an example.  I can enter a…

Static Websites For Those Who Hate Repeating Themselves

The Red Monocle website was originally built with Unbounce, a WYSIWYG html editor and hosting provider that I used to get started extremely rapidly.  Plus, with their free plan, I only needed to buy the domain to get started. Eventually…

Consistency & Validation Messages

Inconsistency is a great way to draw people’s attention to things that need extra attention.  In things that don’t need extra attention, it’s confusing, because your mind tries to figure out why it’s different.

Better Help Experiences: A Conversation with Jimmy Breck-McKye

This is the second of two posts (the first is UX, Help, and Moments of Truth) based on a conversation with Jimmy Breck-McKye, a thoughtful user experience designer based in London.  You can read more of his thoughts on designing user experiences at breck-mckye.com….

UX, Help, and Moments of Truth: A Conversation with Jimmy Breck-McKye

This is the first of two posts based on a comversation with Jimmy Breck-McKye, a thoughtful user experience designer based in London.  You can read more of his thoughts on designing user experiences at breck-mckye.com. Who are you, and what do…

I have a couple of ideas for how application help can be improved – but I want to hear your thoughts on the matter.  Please take a moment to answer four quick questions (and one open-ended question) on your opinion…

Build Something New Everyday

As I’ve mentioned before, my favorite part of a project is the beginning, with all the optimism that the product will be fast, intuitive, and make the user awesome at doing the task at hand.  In other words, perfect.  Unfortunately,…

Think Awesome, Not Boring, for User Help

I complained in a prior post that the user interfaces for help have not kept pace with the huge improvements made to software interfaces, and while I picked on a lot of examples of boring help, I didn’t offer any…

Your Software Interface Has Changed In The Last Ten Years-Why Hasn't Your User Help?

I’ve been on a mission to collect examples of amazing user help for the past six months.  When I started this effort I assumed that I would find a lot of terrible examples, and 10-20 great examples.  But I found…