Keynote at HighEdWeb 2010
Steve Krug (pronounced “kroog”) is best known as the author of “Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability,” now in its second edition with over 200,000 copies in print.
His new book, “Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems,” explains how everyone can-and should-be doing their own usability testing.
His books are based on 20 years of experience as a usability consultant for a wide variety of clients like Apple, Bloomberg.com, Lexus.com, NPR, the International Monetary Fund, and many others. His consulting firm, Advanced Common Sense (“just me and a few well-placed mirrors”) is based in Chestnut Hill, MA.
He currently spends most of his time teaching usability workshops, consulting, and watching old movies.
The following are my thoughts on Steve Krug’s book, “Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability.” Steve was a keynote speaker at HighEdWeb 2010 and he touched on a few points in this book and his new book, “Rocket Surgery Made Easy: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Finding and Fixing Usability Problems.”
Referring to Krug’s 3rd law on p. 45., can we simplify too much? into the obscure? How do you know? or how do you find the balance?
p. 45 “Krug’s 3rd law of usability: get rid of half the words on each page, then get rid of half of what’s left.”
I had a thought, how many people use CTRL+F to find something on a page?
“And the worst thing about the myth of the average user is that it reinforces the idea that good web design is largely a matter of figuring out what people like.”
“the average user doesn’t exist.”
“The problem is there are no simple “right” answers for most web design questions. What works is good, integrated design that fills a need – carefully thought out, well executed, and tested.”
So, how can Krug tell us what is good design or what is usable or what doesn’t make us think if there is now average “us” to base it off of? I know he’s done tons of usability studies, and watched lots of people, and found that “all web users are unique, and all web use is basically idiosyncratic. (p. 128)” How does he know that I want site id in the top left with a clever tag line?
“The point is, it’s not productive to ask questions like “Do most people like pulldown menus?” The right question to ask is does this X create a good experience for most people. The only way to answer that question is with testing. You should watch ordinary people as they try to figure it out.