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The Acronym UX

June 19, 2016 1:20 am
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UX has become something of a buzzword in the creative industries. A nebulous term that the uninformed sales person may use seemingly interchangably. Now I may just be a lowly Human mouse cursor operator but here are a couple of the things I’ve learnt along the way about what this crazy UX thing is. Maybe they’ll be useful to someone, maybe it’s just an outlet for my snark. But somewhere along the way the acronym ux has lost it’s meaning

***Edit: apparently I’ve had this in my drafts for a year now. I imagine I was going to elucidate on a few more salient points. I still have none. However it’s important for me to get my snark out there though so imma just gonna go ahead and post it***

The acronym UX is not a verb

One does not “UX it”. One does some UX work on a project. Using it in the context of a verb not only shows a deep misunderstanding of the process of UX it also manages your clients expectations poorly and sets a precedent where true UX work gets buried under a ton of cruft where the original intentions of the UX work gets buried under an ever increasing pile of crap

The acronym UX does not mean web design

Using UX as a stand in for doing site design work is an appalling mis-sell as a service but as UX has reached such buzzword levels it is mis-appropriated to be used as a stand in for pretty much anything that digital design may touch.

Yes, UX may some involve UI design on a project. Yes, UX considerations & learnings will pertain largely to a site redesign. UX, however, is not a catch all umbrella for these terms. UX should be the bedrock for your plans going forward based on learnings from your current systems and should inform design work. It is not the visual design work.

The acronym UX is not about your thoughts and feelings

The amount of times in the past 3 years user based learnings I’ve presented have been brushed aside because someone “feels” something is ridiculous. User Experience design is statistical learnings implemented with a provable outcome. These statistical learnings can come from user testing focus groups, via analytical findings, from evidence based research, from A/B testing.

User Experience design is evidence based and user-centric. It is not neccesarily a good bed fellow to your “thought of the day” marketing concerns. It is considered and it is a slow burn process which should be an ongoing process throughout your products life cycle.

User Experience design is the science behind the design, not the colouring-in in front of it.

The acronym UX is about your users experience

Think about that before you try and shove more meaningless crap in my way whilst I’m trying to view the content I went out of my way to actively search, choose and visit your site for.



This joint was penned by @elmarko