Developers Do Design?

Ok, I know, you’re thinking “WTF BBQ Ponies, U R INSANE!”  The first response to that concept, that a developer would do design, is often one of “whatever, I’ll do it if I need to” or “yeah, it’s not that hard, I can just roll something together”.  After hearing a few statements like this is there any wonder there are a gazillion completely horrid, unusable, piece of shit, unattractive, company busting, business failing user interfaces and user experience designs that get implemented?

No, it really answers a lot of questions.

Developers often say they don’t need to do the user experience or design work, they just work in the back end.  Often I can see this though, as there are lots of uber A-grade nerds that do everything except worry about what the user is actually attempting to do with the data being requested, the information that is desired, and the end process of the business need.

This is a recipe for continual failure.

Agile processes, legitimate and honest agile processes remedy a lot of this as it requires working software for the end user be built regularly.  With this a lot of problems are worked out because the end user is able to fix and get what they want built instead of being lumped with a pile of code spaghetti application trash.

But beyond just the working software requirement, the manifesto could state simply that working software along with UX paper prototypes be required.  Get those users working with prototypes but also have a UX guru do paper prototypes and arguably keep doing paper prototypes during development.  This is pivotal to making truly usable, exiting, forward thinking and limit breaking software!

On this statement, I’ve dug in and found a few books to read on the topics that our Webtrends UX gurus read.  These guys are a-grade UX geeks like there are a-grade architectural software nerds, rare and hard to find.  Hats off to @skylark64, @parrfolio, and @justinogarrity.  The books as suggested:

So with that written, I have my reading cut out for me.  I’m off to the books.

2 thoughts on “Developers Do Design?

  1. Chicago

    “Technical accessibility is not enough to make a website easy to use. The real question is whether users can get what they want from a website in a reasonable amount of time and whether the visit is pleasant for them. Users with disabilities are humans and need easy and simple user interfaces just like anybody else.” – Jakob Nielsen”

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