When Interface Design Attacks!

Amy Hoy, Lead Interaction Designer, Lime Wire, LLC

Track: Web Apps
Date: Thursday, July 27
Time: 4:30pm - 5:15pm
Location: F150

Little things like the way a person enters a date on a form, or where you stick the "home" link, can make a big difference in a user's experience of your web application. When these seemingly trivial design decisions come to rest on the shoulders of product managers, developers, and others, things can go terribly wrong. But only because these folks haven't had background training in the basics of interface design -- a discipline that is less an art and more a science, and yet one that is sometimes feared and sometimes downright derided by technical people.

How much user empathy do you need -- and how much is too much? When should you listen to your customers about specific interface/feature requests, and when should you serve as a judicious editor of their demands? Should you follow the interface lead of your competitor? What is, after all, the ultimate goal of your interface? And what on earth is the best way to lay out forms (everyone's most-hated design task)?

These questions are less tricky than they may first appear, and they are chief among the topics covered in When Interface Design Attacks!. Anyone is capable of improving his or her interface design skills.