Author: Clem Auyeung

Unboxing Algorithms

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Business & Culture / User Research / UX Design

I’m on a team with Ariel Duncan and Paul Roberts, and for our graduate “thesis” project, we chose to focus on algorithms and their impact on culture. We landed on algorithms – and the technologies that use them – because of the increasing roles that they play in shaping daily human life. With the results of the 2016 election, we felt that it was timely to understand algorithm’s often opaque internal mechanisms and hidden biases. Part of our […]

Words Form the Building Blocks of User Experience Design

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Case Study / Content Strategy / Uncategorized / UX Design / Writing & Editing

In her talk at Rhode Island School of Design, Nicole Fenton described the concept of interbeing from Thich Nhat Hanh. It looks at the world as everything taking a part in creating everything else: the sun makes it possible to grow a tree, which takes a person to chop it down, which eventually becomes paper. All these activities feed into making paper and allows it to exist. Similarly, when we think about something as ambiguous as user experience, […]

Let Writers Lead on Your Product Team

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Content Strategy / Uncategorized / UX Design / Writing & Editing

Note: This is Part 1 of a series on using language to solve design problems. “Innovation is no longer just about new technology per se. It is about new models of organisation. Design is no longer just about form anymore but is a method of thinking that can let you to see around corners. And the high tech breakthroughs that do count today are not about speed and performance but about collaboration, conversation and co-creation.” -Bruce […]

Language as Interface: A Voice and Tone Guide for Your UX Design Project

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Content Strategy / Marketing & Brand / Resources / UX Design / Writing & Editing

Editor’s Note: You could digest this piece in one sitting, or you might read it in chunks, use it as a reference, or even save it for the weekend. It’s long but comprehensive. Whatever you do, remember this: words are also design material. Choose them thoughtfully. Introduction “Like a well-built home, great software focuses on giving its users hundreds of small, satisfying interactions. A great transition in a mobile app gives us the same feeling we get […]

Why Slack Is Worth $2.8B: Its User Experience Makes People Care

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Business & Culture / UX Design

“A central thesis is that all products are asking things of their customers: to do things in a certain way, to think of themselves in a certain way — and usually that means changing what one does or how one does it; it often means changing how one thinks of oneself.” We often forget that we ask a lot from people who use our products. Whatever we design is asking users to do things our way. And it’s […]

Write Microcopy Like You Give A Damn

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Content Strategy / UX Design / Writing & Editing

If you’re designing interfaces for websites and apps, it’s still mostly about words. Iterating quickly without considering the words is like forgetting to add yeast to the dough. You’re leaving out one of the most crucial ingredients that actually make your interface work. I’ve written previously about how copy is interface. Once people have downloaded your app, for example, words direct them and create paths for them to follow. If consistency is one of the […]

Design Your Narrative Before The Product

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Case Study / Content Strategy / Marketing & Brand / Storytelling / UX Design / Writing & Editing

Your user experience is your product. When marketing people don’t talk to product people, what you get is less than ideal user journey. Below, I’ll explore how writing your product narrative first can help you design more welcoming experiences for potential customers. A case of disconnected user journey YouTube is a perfect marketing channel for some companies. If you target a niche audience, understand their behavior well, and find the right Youtuber to promote your product, it’s […]

Good Writing Is Good Design

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Content Strategy / UX Design / Writing & Editing

“Words matter. They are abstractions, too — an interface to thought and understanding by communication. The words we use mold our perception of our work and the world around us. They become a frame, just like the interfaces we design.” –Frank Chimero Michael Johnson, Design Director of Happy Cog, tweeted something recently that caught my attention. Not only because designers can learn about design from writers, but also, I believe that writers can learn about […]

Your Point of View Is Your Brand

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Business & Culture / Marketing & Brand
Lighthouse in the Dark

Side note: I have always been a firm believer in writing about things I care about and that might add a lot of value to whomever reading. But Hunter Walk’s post reminded me that I can let go of the pressure to be right, have everything figured out, or write something definitive to “build an audience.” (Though that would be nice.) Just share what you know. It might attract someone who you can learn from. TL;DR: Stand up […]

Listen for the things unsaid

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Career / Journal

My mom recently asked me where I wanted to be in about 5 years. Everybody should have a 3-year, 5-year, and 10-year plan, right? I admitted that I didn’t know. “You have to know!” She said. “How do you know what to do if you don’t know where to go?” I’ve often struggled with gaining clarity around my future. While many of my friends already had their life planned out – a stable career, a […]