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Interaction Design

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Interaction Design is a field and approach to designing interactive experiences. These could be in any medium, not only digital media. Interactive experiences, necessarily, require time as an organizing principle (though not exclusively) and Interactive Design is concerned with a user, customer, audience, or participant's experience flow through time. Interactivity should not be confused with animation in which objects may move on a screen; interactivity is concerned with being part of the action of a system or performance and not merely watching the action passively.



Technical Writers and Interaction Design

Technical writers are oft-forgotten constituents in the product development cycle. Although they are rarely tasked with participating in product requirements definition and product design, technical writers are in a unique position to affect product design. However, they will find that subtlety and subterfuge are sometimes necessary to make a politically correct impact in an organization that has not embraced interaction design as a formal part of the development process.

Calde, Steve. Cooper Interaction Design (2004). Articles>Writing>Technical Writing>Interaction Design


The Ten Principles of Interaction Design

Ten key rules that make good interaction designs and designers and that you need to understand before you can break them.

Vavra, Chad. .Net Magazine (2011). Articles>Web Design>Interaction Design>User Experience


De Terreur van Skip Intro

Wie zich onder de eerste lichting world wide web-surfers bevond rond 1994, toen de eerste NetScape-browser de Mosaic-browser vervangen had, kan zich waarschijnlijk herinneren dat webpagina's uit niet veel meer bestonden dan tekst met hyperlinks en een lullig patroontje als achtergrond. Er werd nauwlijks gebruik gemaakt van visuele elementen. Helaas kwam daar snel een eind aan.

Massee, Door Laurens. de Lijst (2002). (Dutch) Design>Web Design>Interaction Design>Flash


Text in Motion With the Wiggler

When you start using After Effects, there will come a time when you look at the presets and think, 'Gosh, I am bored with these.' That will be the point where you discover Adobe has a wonderful sense of humor and you start using the Wiggler. In the text options, on the timeline, the Wiggly selector can be added to a chunk of text to randomize the values of any of the properties associated with that group. That description may sound rather formal, but when it comes to adding effects, randomness can lead to some happy surprises. Essentially you can have text bend, move, blur, spin, and so on by simply giving it some parameters for the effect.

Green, Tom. Community MX (2006). Design>Web Design>Interaction Design>Flash


Thoughts on Interaction Design

It is the primary goal of this text to better define Interaction Design: to provide a definition that encompasses the intellectual facets of the field, the conceptual underpinnings of Interaction Design as a legitimate human-centered field, and the particular methods used by practitioners in their day to day experiences.

Thoughts on Interaction Design (2007). Books>User Experience>Interaction Design


Tilted Content Slideshow

The FWA landing page has a really nice content slider that plays with 3D perspective on screenshots and animates them in an interesting way. Today we’d like to recreate part of that effect and make a simple content slideshow with some fancy 3D animations. The slideshow won’t be the same as the one on the FWA page: the items won’t be “floating” or moving on hover and we’ll only have a simple navigation.

Lou, Mary. Codrops (2014). Design>Web Design>Interaction Design


Tools and Trade-Offs: Making Wise Choices for User-Centered Design

How can we choose among customer data collection methods when limited staff and financial resources must be spread across the whole development cycle? This tutorial helps participants understand the tradeoffs, so they can make effective choices among methods at different points during product design and development. It focuses on early user-centered intervention to gain cost-effective, reusable end-user information.

Rosenbaum, Stephanie L., Judee Humburg, Judith A. Ramey and Anne Seeley. ACM SIGCHI (1995). Design>User Centered Design>Human Computer Interaction>Usability


Top Ten Mistakes of Web Management

Web design and development involves three levels: web management; interaction design (navigation support, homepage layout, templates, search, etc.); content design (the actual writing on the pages, as well as the design of any other media types used to communicate content as opposed to site interaction). Just as in a hamburger, the middle layer is the most tasty and attracts the most attention, including much of my own work on Web usability. I have come to realize that the outer two layers are more important in many ways: users only care about content (in other words, no, the medium is not the message; the message is the message) and the usability of a website is more a function of how it is managed than of how good its designers are. Content will be the topic of many other columns; here I address some classic mistakes in managing the design of a website.

Nielsen, Jakob. Alertbox (1997). Design>Web Design>User Centered Design>Interaction Design


Toward 2^W, Beyond Web 2.0   (peer-reviewed)

From its inception as a global hypertext system, the Web has evolved into a universal platform for deploying loosely coupled distributed applications. As we move toward the next-generation Web platform, the bulk of user data and applications will reside in the network cloud. Ubiquitous access results from interaction delivered as Web pages augmented by JavaScript to create highly reactive user interfaces. This point in the evolution of the Web is often called Web 2.0. In predicting what comes after Web 2.0--what I call 2^W, a Web that encompasses all Web-addressable information--I go back to the architectural foundations of the Web, analyze the move to Web 2.0, and look forward to what might follow.

Raman, T.V. Communications of the ACM (2009). Articles>Web Design>Interaction Design


Traces of Previous Use: The Communicational Possibilities of Interaction Histories

In the digital environment, human presence leaves no trace; every user of an electronic collection is in effect an isolated user. Some researchers in computer interface design have suggested that a useful strategy for reducing this isolation might be to provide a means for a collection to retain an interaction history. If the system creates and makes accessible a record of activity, subsequent users may be able to derive meaning from the record. One well-known implementation of this strategy is in the amazon.com lists of books that were also bought by people who bought the book currently shown. This strategy holds promise for a wider implementation, and is particularly promising as a tool for interfaces designed for information browsing, where user structuring of the items represented can be a significant indication of how they have interpreted the collection. Issues include the role of intention in communication – clearly purchasers at amazon.com are not buying books primarily to create a message for subsequent users – and the significant effects of presuppositions in any communication process – subsequent users must assume that previous buyers were not collecting a set of "worst books" on the topic. Drawing on previous research on interaction histories, as well as Suchman's ideas on situated activity and the phenomenological approach to interface design proposed by Winograd and Flores, this paper examines the means by which interaction histories might be designed specifically to play a role as a communication tool between users of full-prospect browsing interfaces to electronic document collections.

Ruecker, Stan. University of Alberta (2003). Design>Web Design>Personalization>Interaction Design


Tripping the DOM fantastic with jQuery

Jay Blanchard, author of the book Applied jQuery, explains how to work with elements in your markup that are either ancestors or descendants of an HTML element that you have selected. Here he focuses on the DOM tree traversal methods.

Blanchard, Jay. .Net Magazine (2011). Articles>Web Design>Interaction Design>JavaScript


Troubling Aspects of the Online Realm

Find out how the blogosphere is portrayed as stupid, how automatic reloading of web pages annoys users, how it's very difficult or impossible to scroll text entry boxes, why search engines need filters, why usability is not "dead" for web design, why delete must not automatically open the next email message, why "view profile" must not be omitted, and why all user actions need prominent "action succeeded" messages and "view action results" page links.

Streight, Steven. Blogger.com (2004). Articles>Cyberculture>Interaction Design>Usability


Trusted Interaction: User Control and System Responsibilities in Interaction Design for Information Systems   (PDF)

Trust emerges from interaction. If trust in information systems is to be promoted, then attention must be directed, at least in part, to interaction design. This paper explores issues of trust in the interactions between users and systems from the perspective of interaction design. It considers a variety of pragmatic aspects in interaction design that impact user trust, including, predictability, interface stability, user control, and the match between expectations and performance. It critically examines contemporary design practices, such as adaptive interfaces, in terms of their impact on user trust.

Constantine, Larry L. Constantine and Lockwood (2006). Articles>Human Computer Interaction>Interaction Design


UI Design

A web magazine for interaction designers.

UIdesign. Journals>User Interface>Interaction Design


Usability Do’s And Don’ts For Interactive Design

We often talk about how to make our websites more usable, whether it’s tweaking the HTML structure of pages to benefit the user’s process or figuring out how best to display a message via CSS. But we never bring this thought process into our jQuery-based (and other JavaScript-based) elements. How can we enhance the user experience and usability of our jQuery events? This article will briefly discuss ways to look at the code and the result of our interactive designs and, thus, improve their usability.

MacGowan, Ben. Smashing (2010). Articles>Web Design>Interaction Design>Usability


Usability or Interaction Design: Who Does What

I was recently asked about the apparent confusion in the digital design community about who does what. I mainly talk about usability and user experience as I believe these best encapsulate what matters to users – the total experience with a product, system or service.

Stewart, Tom. Econsultancy (2010). Articles>Usability>Interaction Design>User Experience


Usability Tips for Your Application (Part I)

There are a exponentially growing amount of applications being developed. Some of them vanish at an early stage, while others grow to be quite (and sometimes extremely) popular. What really dazzles me is how sucky many of them (both the popular and the unpopular ones) are regarding how they deal with user-interaction.

Odden, Michael. Unlimited Edition (2009). Articles>Usability>User Interface>Interaction Design


Use Cases and Interaction Design

Use cases are widely used in large projects to capture the functional requirements of software systems. In the hands of interaction designers, use cases can serve as a powerful tool for brainstorming workflows and bridging the gaps between design and development.

GUUUI (2004). Design>Web Design>User Centered Design>Interaction Design


Use Inverted Colors to Highlight Active Link

It is often difficult to find the cursor when a web site is navigated using the keyboard. Where is the active link? With CSS the author of a web page can adjust how the active link is visualized. Inverted colors are the best way to highlight the active link.

Tverskov, Jesper. Smack the Mouse (2006). Design>Web Design>Interaction Design>CSS


Useless Memory and Email

While no one would argue that email is useless, continued inefficient management of emails makes email worse than useless—--it makes them dangerous.

Mancini, John. e-Doc (2005). Articles>Human Computer Interaction>Information Design>Email


User Experience

This document outlines typical areas of concern when porting a Microsoft Windows application to Mac OS X, and provides guidance for transitioning to the Mac OS X UI.

Apple Inc. (2004). Design>User Experience>Human Computer Interaction


Using Ajax   (PDF)

Put a new shine on your web applications. Tired of clunky web interfaces and waiting around for a page to reload? Well, it’s about time to give your web apps that pine-scented desktop application feel. What are we talking about? Just the newest thing to hit the Web: Ajax—asynchronous JavaScript and XML—and your ticket to building rich Internet applicationsthat are more interactive,responsive, and easy to use. So, grab your trial-size Ajax,included with every copy of Head Rush Ajax:we’re about to put some polish on your web apps.

McLaughlin, Brett D. O'Reilly and Associates (2006). Design>Web Design>Interaction Design>Ajax


Using Computer-Based Narratives to Persuade

Our lab has been investigating how computer-based narratives can change people's beliefs and behaviors.

Fogg, B.J. Stanford University (2004). Articles>Human Computer Interaction>Persuasive Design


Using JavaScript to Develop Interactive Self-Assessments   (PDF)

Interactive self-assessments are effective tools for a variety of audiences; from determining one’s Myers- Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) or personality characteristics to self-scoring quizzes of all types for online training. Many Web sites contain such selfassessments that help customers select from among other offerings the type of product or service that meets their requirements. The strategic design and development of interactive self-assessments can also help steer customers to your specific product line or service, or even help them make the decision to buy or award a contract. This paper looks at the effectiveness of self-assessments as a business tool and the use of JavaScript for supporting the interactive elements.

Le Vie, Donald S., Jr. STC Proceedings (2000). Presentations>Web Design>Interaction Design>JavaScript



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