Are you interested in making this world a better place by helping people learn from and understand the power of design? Great – you’ve come to the right place!
Here at UsabilityGeek, we pride ourselves on educating people about all things UX. It is our mission to be the world’s best and go-to blog on all topics related to UX and Interaction Design. We firmly believe that well-designed products and services have the power to make a dent in the universe.
The articles submitted in this category should do a comparison between good and bad design where you should find, show, describe and compare a successfully designed product with a similar one that is poorly designed. Our goal is that your design story, along with all of our other design stories, will help educate and inspire designers worldwide to create more pleasurable, smooth and efficient products such as websites and household appliances while ridding the world of frustrating and time-consuming designs of products. To give you some inspiration, our editor-in-chief has put together the following piece, and we expect that the contributions which our readers (you) will make will follow a similar template.
As you can see from the above sample article, ideally what we would like to see in the design story contributions are the following:
1. Catchy heading: As they say, “first impressions are the last impressions”. Please impress us with a catchy heading which is captivating for our readers and which reflects your overall message succinctly.
2. Describe the designs you are submitting and your feelings around them: In a few lines, please explain your experiences in using both the bad product/app/service and the good one. Feel free to describe these using screenshots or even a video recording (yes, you can even send us a short video narrating your experience). In these few lines, also describe how the product or service made you feel (e.g., happy, anxious, confused). Try to just focus on the emotions and on describing the situation – don’t worry about explaining WHY this is a bad/good design until the next section.
3. Why is this a bad design?: In this section, please explain why the bad design is a bad design. Be as detailed as possible. For instance, please explain:
- What makes it so bad?
- How did it affect you?
These are points just to give you an idea of how you can describe your experience using the product – but don’t hold back. 😊 Feel free to go into beast mode and explain why using this product was such a bad experience, all the relevant aspects you can think of – the irritating, alarming and/or downright ugly bits.
As you’re explaining the bad design example, please include the following “It would be as if…” section:
4. It would be as if… (only physical, real-world examples): Compare the bad design to something which could happen in real life – like buying something physical in a shop, something which happened while you were taking your girlfriend out, waiting in line, etc. This comparison to a real-life experience can be difficult to nail, but when you succeed you will win on two fronts. For one, you’ll present a concrete similarity for the person reading it to relate to. Secondly, you’ll prove your ability to explain the core of the design problem and show you’re able to truly understand, implement and teach others how to avoid this issue and create winning designs. (Please refer to the article we shared earlier as an inspiration for this section.)
5. Why is this a good design? Now, it’s time to explain what makes the good design so good. As with the bad design example, please go into detail about how it made you feel – aspects that were outstanding and anything else that made it a pleasurable experience. However, you don’t need to include an “It would be as if…” section for your good design example. Still, please state all the relevant points you can.
6. Lessons learnt and best practices: In this section, please tell us how our readers and the UX community at large can learn from your design examples. For instance, did you notice anything in your experience with the bad design that could cause a serious problem in a context – something that designers could learn from so they can prevent an epic fail in their own work? It would be wonderful if you could provide concrete recommendations for UX professionals in this section.
Finally, please note that we expect design articles to follow our editorial guidelines.