We’re all mostly accustomed to educating ourselves by reading articles. Rare are the opportunities to attend conferences or watch live shows on subjects that we’re interested in. That’s why we are presenting here phenomenal videos and related resources on the topic of user experience (UX) by different presenters at different events. We have focused on current content but have included some older videos that are still relevant. It will take you more than 16 hours to watch all of these videos. So, make some popcorn, turn off the lights and enjoy.
User Experience Videos
The State of User Experience
Jesse James Garett, founder of Adaptive Path and author of the book The Elements of User Experience, speaks on what UX and UX design is, what UX looked like before and what are some of the challenges people are encountering now. He cites engagement as the main goal of UX design and, through some fantastic examples, shows that engagement is an universal quality achieved through visuality, sound, touch, smell, taste, body and mind. One of the most impressive moments from the session is when Jesse compares Beethoven to an experience designer, accompanied by the Ninth Symphony. Duration: 40 minutes.
UX Best Practices
In this excellent video session, Nick Finck pries open the most popular websites today, including eBay, Amazon, Toyota, Flickr, Twitter and Netflix, to explain user experience best practices. Nick discusses both the good and bad experiences on these websites on the basis of visual design, information architecture, interaction and ease of use. For those unfamiliar with UX, Nick explains the basic concept and contributing factors. The last 20 minutes of the session are reserved for Q&A, and some very interesting questions and great answers come up. Duration: 1 hour 32 minutes. There is no video of the session, only 75 slides with an audtio track.
The Three Ways That Good Design Makes You Happy
In this short but fantastic lecture, Don Norman, known to many as the author of The Design of Everyday Things, explains visual, behavioral and reflective design and the ways in which each of them affects people. In his witty way, Done shows examples from everyday life. Duration: 13 minutes.
5 Minutes on Imitation in Design
In this brilliant short talk, Jeffrey Veen explains what is meant by “Good artists copy, great artist steal.” By way of an interesting short story about World War II and the American army’s contact with natives of the Pacific Islands, he also explains “cargo cult” and how it still present today. A truly brilliant video. Duration: 6 minutes.
UX Team of One
In this half-hour session held at the IA Summit 2008, Leah Buley of Adaptive Path shows what it means to be a UX team of one by telling her own story and recounting a real-life example. Leah explains the concept of generative design, which is the process of creating and sketching a lot of different ideas and then refining them. The slides are amazing because Leah drew them by hand. Duration: 32 minutes.
Experience Is the Product
Peter Merholz explains why it is important to focus not on technology or features but on the product and the experience you want to create. The session is rich in good and bad examples drawn from real life. Duration: 43 minutes.
Behavior Is Our Medium
In this fantastic session, Robert Fabricant talks about interaction design beyond computing technology. His examples include the family tree and one particularly interesting tree that his daughters drew. His examples from history, especially ancient history, are amazing and put interaction design in a broader context beyond the computer interfaces we’re so used to. Duration: 61 minutes.
Web Form Design
If you think Web forms suck (because you have to fill them in every day), then you must see this video. This talk by Luke Wroblewsky at MIX 09 is based on years of experience in usability testing and study. Luke shows examples from the real world and addresses the major problems with Web form design today. You will see how some of the biggest websites have failed and what you can do to prevent such failures in your Web forms. Duration: 75 minutes.
User Experience Design for Non-Designers
In this short mini-breakout session, Shawn Konopinsky explains what UX design is at a very abstract level. He shows three different types of user interfaces and how UX design applies to all three. He explains basic concepts such as concept ideation, interaction design and visual design and emphasizes the importance of an “Agile” approach to projects. Duration: 18 minutes.
The Importance of Identity and Vision to UX Designers on Agile Projects
If you watched the previous video, you will know why the Agile approach is important in UX design. This video and the slides go deeper into the Agile approach, relying on research done at London university. Johanna Kollmann explains the research and the results. Duration: 32 minutes.
Learning IxD from Everyday Objects
“Inspiration surrounds us in everyday objects.” This is how Bill DeRouchey begins this brilliant talk about interaction design. We use icons, words or shapes to create a language of interactions. If we use the wrong language, the interaction becomes confusing, and this is what Bill shows, using many common objects and devices. One of the most interesting slides is the one that shows how users “hack the interface.” Duration: 45 minutes.
Two videos: Information and Architecture
In these two short videos, Mickey McManus explains related concepts: information and architecture, using everyday objects, such as cup of tea, to illustrate his argument. The videos are part of a short article in which Mickey draws these concepts together to explain what information architecture is. Duration: a few minutes.
Wireframes for the Wicked
Nick Finck, along with Michael Angels and Donna Spencer, goes over wireframing basics via short easy questions. What are wireframes? Why use wireframes? What does the process of wireframing look like? The three of them also explain the different types of wireframes and show examples of their work. Duration: 1 hour 5 minutes.
Design Prototyping: Bringing Wireframes to Life
Dan Harrelson explains the purpose of prototyping, why it is important and how it differs from wireframes and visual comps. With wireframing, instead of seeing how a concept functions or works, we see how it actually feels, which contributes to better usability testing. The video, like all videos from MIX 09, has “double view”: while looking at the large slides, you have a synchronized inset video of the speaker. Duration: 60 minutes.
Journey to the Center of Design
Does user-centric design really exist? In this funny keynote, Jared Spool asks whether user-centric design (UCD) has lost its way and needs to evolve into something else. Ironically, as studies have shown, many great projects have succeeded without UCD. Jared suggests three key attributes of great experience design that can replace UCD. Duration: 1 hour 14 minutes.
User-Centered Design 101
In this Web seminar, Frank Spiller demystifies the paradigm of UCD. He explains the difference between usability and UCD, which has confused many. From the perspective of the development process, he compares UCD to the Agile and Waterfall processes. At the end, he shows some UCD success stories. Duration: 58 minutes.
The Mint.com Experience
Aaron Forth of Mint.com speaks of the importance of aligning your user experience and business objectives. He goes over the challenges of delivering such a user experience at Mint, what the company did to attract brand interest and how Mint became one of the best personal-finance software tools today. Interesting fact: Mint discontinued IE6 support because it spent almost 20% of its time designing for the browser. Duration: 40 minutes.
Mobile User Experiences
Rachel Hinman start her talk about mobile user experiences with a provocative thought: that technology disengages us from real life. She says we should rethink our relationship to devices and use them in the context of concrete tasks. Duration: 24 minutes.
Tap Is the New Click
“Several years ago, Minority Report was a sci-fi movie, and now we’re already there with [the touch wall].” At the beginning of his session, Dan Saffer shows a couple of examples of touch-screen technology that marks the beginning of a new era of interaction in which gesture and touch replace mouse clicks. He explains how to design for these technologies by going over how touch-screens differ from traditional websites and devices. Duration: 67 minutes.
This is a fantastic experiment that examines current mouse-driven user interfaces and their limitation while offering a completely new way of interaction. Although keyboard and mouse were really great innovations in past century, Clayton Miller think we shouldn’t stop there but rather innovate further. Duration: 8 minutes.
The Least You Can Do About Usability
Steve Krug, known to many as the author of Don’t Make Me Think, here tries to convince people to do their own usability testing. Confirming Jacob Nielsen’s advice, that developers can do it themselves, Steve identifies the minimum requirements to make usability testing meaningful. At the end of the session, Steve performs a short usability test right in front of the audience, which makes this session truly outstanding. Duration: 60 minutes.
Kelly Norton talks about a very interesting, and often forgotten, subject: AJAX usability. He covers usability basics and how to design AJAX applications for humans. Full of real-life examples, he offers several concrete suggestions on how to improve usability in AJAX applications. Duration: 55 minutes.
Jason Fried of 37signals Speaking at Business of Software 2008
In this short amazing session, Jason Fried shares his thoughts and experiences from 37Signals. Ideas are agile, some even radical. This video is interesting because many of Jason’s thoughts contrast with widespread opinion. In the second half of the session, Jason uses audience questions to explain his ideas in more detail. Duration: 55 minutes.
Sketching User Experiences
In this keynote from MIX09, the first 25 minutes are taken up by Bill Buxton, known to many as the author of the book Sketching User Experiences. In an optimistic talk, he explains why now, in these days of crisis, is a good time to pay attention to design and what key factors are required to revitalize the user experience. Duration: 25 minutes.
Interview With Don Norman on UX Week 2008
In a relaxed atmosphere at UX Week 2008, Don Norman answers interesting questions and share his thoughts on various aspects of design. One of the best bits comes at the beginning, when Don speaks of his “crusade” to replace the word “users” with “people.” Will we ever have “People Experience”? Do we already have it? Find the answer in this fantastic interview. Duration: 53 minutes.