MakeUseOf: The 6 Best Simple Android Launchers for Parents and Grandparents

MakeUseOf: The 6 Best Simple Android Launchers for Parents and Grandparents. “A simpler launcher can solve most of the difficulties your grandparent or parent faces on their Android phone. The default one often promotes its fanciest functions, complicating essential actions like calling in the process. Thankfully, you can choose from a range of third-party launchers that are designed with older users in mind. They’re easy to navigate and don’t have any extra features that just get in the way of basic usage.”

Google News: the full coverage feature (UX Collective)

UX Collective: Google News: the full coverage feature. “Google News is used by hundreds of millions of users across the world. That’s why I admire the audacity of vision here and appreciate Google’s efforts to solve such a wicked hard problem; Especially when you put into context the amount of data generated over the Internet. According to a research report by Domo, users of the Internet generate 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every day, and 90% of that data over the Internet was created in the last two years only. The data Google News has to organize will seem minuscule in comparison to that scale. However, it’s still HUGE by any standard.” Really gets down in the weeds (in a good way!)

Ars Technica: Behold, the most (intentionally) poorly designed website ever created

Ars Technica: Behold, the most (intentionally) poorly designed website ever created. “Sometimes we take Web and user interface design for granted—that’s the point of User Inyerface, a hilariously and deliberately difficult-to-use website created to show just how much we rely on past habits and design conventions to interact with the Web and our digital devices.”

Cogapp: What functionality do the best online archives have?

Cogapp: What functionality do the best online archives have?. “What makes an online archive useful to its users? In honour of International Archives Day, I looked at 14 world-leading online archives to find out. My focus was the features and functionality commonly offered, as well as any super cool features particular to specific sites.”

The Instagram of Trust: How to Redesign the Architecture of Trust in Products (Hacker Noon)

Hacker Noon: The Instagram of Trust: How to Redesign the Architecture of Trust in Products. “More technology requires us to give up our privacy for the cost of better personalization. But how to fix the issue of ever growing lack of trust in our society? More and more brands are asking people for trust based on their promises and by being transparent about its policies. But the psychology of trust works quite differently. There have been many attempts and debates happening around the black box of algorithms and being transparent about how the algorithms work. But I would like to ask: Is transparency enough? Is it an effective way to build a long-lasting relationship with a customer? Is it going to build trust in a brand and in a product?”

UX Collective: Are you sure? — how user interfaces undermine consent

UX Collective: Are you sure? — how user interfaces undermine consent. “As more and more of our human interactions are mediated through software interfaces, our tools should model the good consent patterns that we would expect from decent humans. If the software is being coercive and creepy, we should ask why and change that pattern. Every non-consensual thing a software interface does was designed that way by a human; it can be designed not to do it.”

Wired: Beep! Bloop! Buzz! Why Do UX Designers Often Neglect Sound?

Wired: Beep! Bloop! Buzz! Why Do UX Designers Often Neglect Sound?. “Most companies would never consider using an online library to select their brand logo or visual identity. Yet they frequently allow their products to go out into the world with cheaply produced or licensed sounds downloaded from a mass market sound effects library. Why this undervaluation of sound and music?”

EurekAlert: Subtle visual cues nudge users to reveal more in online forum

EurekAlert: Subtle visual cues nudge users to reveal more in online forum. “In a study, researchers found that people using an online sexual health forum featuring computer graphics, called icons, that implied a sense of crowd size and connectivity, revealed more sensitive information than visitors to a site without those visual cues, said S. Shyam Sundar, James P. Jimirro Professor of Media Effects and co-director of the Media Effects Research Laboratory. Pictures meant to convey a sense of community on the web forum did not significantly affect the user’s disclosure, he added.”

Make Tech Easier: What You Need to Know About “Dark Patterns” and How They Trick Users

Make Tech Easier: What You Need to Know About “Dark Patterns” and How They Trick Users. “If you’ve ever accidentally subscribed to an email list, installed some software you didn’t want, or been tricked into needlessly sharing personal data, you’ve already experienced a dark pattern, or a maliciously-designed user interface.”

TechCrunch: A former Google+ UI designer suggests inept management played a role in the network’s demise (beyond Facebook’s impact)

TechCrunch: A former Google+ UI designer suggests inept management played a role in the network’s demise (beyond Facebook’s impact). “A lot of people leave their jobs because of bosses they can’t stand. Yet it’s seldom the case that a former employee publicly badmouths management after the fact. The obvious risk in doing so: future employers might not want to gamble on this person badmouthing them at a later date. That isn’t stopping Morgan Knutson, a UI designer who seven years ago, spent eight months at Google working on its recently shuttered social networking product Google+ and who, in light of the shutdown, decided to share on Twitter his personal experience with how ‘awful the project and exec team was.'”

Ars Technica: Dark Patterns are designed to trick you (and they’re all over the Web)

Ars Technica: Dark Patterns are designed to trick you (and they’re all over the Web). “It happens to the best of us. After looking closely at a bank statement or cable bill, suddenly a small, unrecognizable charge appears. Fine print sleuthing soon provides the answer—somehow, you accidentally signed up for a service. Whether it was an unnoticed pre-marked checkbox or an offhanded verbal agreement at the end of a long phone call, now a charge arrives each month because naturally the promotion has ended. If the possibility of a refund exists, it’ll be found at the end of 45 minutes of holding music or a week’s worth of angry e-mails.”

WUOM: Anonymity drives ‘dark patterns’ of social media behavior

WUOM: Anonymity drives ‘dark patterns’ of social media behavior. “A new study by a Michigan State University researcher probes the mechanisms behind the spread of mass online harassment and fake news by looking at the ‘dark patterns’ underlying the technology platforms. In the science of user experience, dark patterns are psychological tricks incorporated into technology interfaces that are designed to get a user to do something they normally wouldn’t do, like buying a product or signing up for a newsletter.”

BBC: Snapchat redesign is a ‘flop’ with users

BBC: Snapchat redesign is a ‘flop’ with users. “Snapchat’s redesign, which was rolled out at the end of last year, has not gone down well with users. The refreshed look pushed out in the UK, Australia and Canada has proved unpopular, with up to 83% of reviews on the App Store being negative. Many have complained that feeds are no longer chronological and are confusing.”

Quartz: These simple design tricks can help diminish hate speech online

Quartz: These simple design tricks can help diminish hate speech online. “The age-old problem of balancing free expression with harmful, and false, content seems like an impossible problem. But online, at least, there’s a lot that sites can do to fix it, says Susan Benesch, a faculty associate of Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society who studies dangerous speech on and offline. Indeed, our decades of experience in web design have already taught many sites how to discourage incivility and promote reasoned debate.” A number of different case studies. Useful article.

The Conversation: Nobody reads privacy policies – here’s how to fix that

The Conversation: Nobody reads privacy policies – here’s how to fix that. “Have you ever actually read an app’s privacy policy before clicking to accept the terms? What about reading the privacy policy for the website you visit most often? Have you ever read or even noticed the privacy policy posted in your doctor’s waiting room or your bank’s annual privacy notice when you receive it in the mail? No? You’re not alone. Most people don’t read them.”