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Where are the cool usability testing blogs

I’m in the middle of writing a full day usability testing workshop (not for my business, but for a client). It’s been a few years since I wrote a workshop on usability testing, and around 5 years since I wrote my first.

So one of the things I wanted to do was collect some new resources (my workshops are always full of follow-on reading). So I went hunting on the internet, figuring there must be some bloggers talking passionately and honestly about usability testing, the stories and the challenges.

But I can’t find them. I have a few old posts on usability testing (some which are good and I had forgotten) and found a couple of articles in online magazines. But I can’t find any good bloggers who write good, meaty, practical stuff on usability testing.

Ideas anyone?

8 Responses to “Where are the cool usability testing blogs”

  1. Björn Says:

    Hi Donna,

    maybe people have recognized that usability testing is not the solution to the problem. It’s expensive and easy to get wrong, most of the time you will get lots of artifacts in your testing. The high time of usability testing has passed, it helped making the transition to a different way of designing things, a different generation of designers, if you want to call it that way.

    Most people blogging about usability etc. probably blog about design rather than evaluation these days would be my guess. I think it’s a good thing.

  2. Donna Maurer Says:

    Hi Bjorn. I agree that usability testing isn’t the solution. But it is still a very useful tool, and I’m surprised that people more into it than me aren’t writing about new ways to make it work…

  3. Gary Barber Says:

    may be of use Brandy Fortune

    http://usaboodle.com/

    That said I recommend a round of usability testing at least with every major project as it does uncover the major faults with any architecture or design that is proposed. UCD can solve some of the issues but often it’s finding the true representatives of the audience that becomes the problem.

    The testing is just a tool in the entire design methodology slot it in where experience tells you it is needed. The key of course here is the experience.

    Then there is testing for usability and usability testing. Often they can get confused and merge into a greying area of corporate / govt speak of UAT (don’t get me started on that one).

  4. Jessica Gardner Says:

    Hi Donna,

    It’s a good question. I was doing some research on this for a paper I wrote on the benefits of remote usability testing (http://www.ijpis.net/index.html?http%3A//www.ijpis.net/issues/no2_2007/no2_2007_p2.htm) and also couldn’t find much out there.

    I read the following feeds:

    What’s New at usability.gov – http://usability.gov/rss/usabilitynews.xml
    HFI Inc – http://www.humanfactors.com/rss/rss.xml
    Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox – http://www.chipple.net/rss/custom/alertbox/index.rdf
    DonnaM – http://feeds.feedburner.com/DonnaM

    I hope your question can help uncover some others.

    In my experience usability testing has been extremely valuable, particularly for demonstrating the need for change to decision-makers. It really doesn’t need to be expensive either.

    Thanks,
    Jessica

  5. Donna Maurer Says:

    Thanks Jessica – I have dug through HFI and Nielsen, but forgot about usability.gov. I’ll go see what they have to say for themselves.

  6. brandy Says:

    oh good lord I need to update my site, how sad! I had a baby :( but that’s really a :) and I created the site while I was pregnant lol. I think I’ll work on it in february, thanks for the kick in the butt.

  7. Matt Balara Says:

    She’s not only blogging about user testing, but the first person I thought of when I read this was Lisa Reichelt, also an Aussie so maybe you already know her?

    http://disambiguity.com/

  8. Matt Balara Says:

    And if you’re going to commit a typo, then better anywhere except someone’s name, eh? It’s Leisa Reichelt. Sorry Leisa!

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