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Stephanie Morillo

UX design is more than visual design

Stephanie Morillo

In my own observations and conversations with developers and marketers, UX design is often conflated with visual design or user interface design, when in fact both of these are sub-disciplines within the field of UX design and are not representative of the totality of UX. I’ve been involved in conversations where talk of updating a “page’s UX” has meant adding visual design elements to a page. Anecdotally, I’ve seen calls for “UX designers” in open source when the need was for brand assets like a logo. (In this case, you would look for a visual designer.)

In this short post, I’ll cover some basics of UX design for developers who are interested in understanding what UX is and how it differs from other forms of design.


101 cognitive biases & principles that affect your UX

This list is deep and (of course) the UX is well-considered. The author provides definitions of the biases as well as real-world examples of them in action.

Every time users interact with your product, they:

🙈 Filter the information
🔮 Seek the meaning of it
⏰ Act within a given time
💾 Store bits of the interaction in their memories

So to improve your user experience, you need to understand the biases & heuristics affecting those four decision-cycle steps.


BlurHash – a very compact representation of a placeholder for an image

This is a very cool idea and the use case is described perfectly by the authors:

Does your designer cry every time you load their beautifully designed screen, and it is full of empty boxes because all the images have not loaded yet? Does your database engineer cry when you want to solve this by trying to cram little thumbnail images into your data to show as placeholders?

You give BlurHash an image and it gives you back a short string (20-30 chars) that represents the placeholder image. Store the string and send it along with the other data for the object and your client can decode the string into a placeholder image while the real image is loading over the network.


Why designing for open source can be so difficult

After being involved with design and open source projects for many years, I’ve noticed a few common reasons why designing for open source projects can be very difficult. Open source projects (especially FOSS) face a lot of issues that more conventional projects don’t because they lack a clear business model, the structure, and the incentives that for-profit proprietary projects have.

This is a hard problem due to many of the factors outlined in the post, but one worth solving.

Erik Kennedy

Designing for iOS and Android

From Erik Kennedy who shared some tactical design advice for developers — this awesome visual guide covers the primary differences between designing for iOS and Android, including navigation, UI controls, typography, app icons, and more.

If you’re designing both an iOS and an Android (Material Design) version of an app, this guide is your new best friend 😎. We’re going to cover the most relevant differences between iOS and Android for UX/UI designers. If you’ve created an app on one platform, this is most of what you need to know to “translate” it for the other platform.

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