The world of smart shoes, appliances, and phones is already here, but the practice of user experience (UX) design for ubiquitous computing is still relatively new. Design companies like IDEO and frogdesign are regularly asked to design products that unify software interaction, device design and service design -- which are all the key components of ubiquitous computing UX -- and practicing designers need a way to tackle practical challenges of design. Theory is not enough for them -- luckily the industry is now mature enough to have tried and tested best practices and case studies from the field.
Smart Things presents a problem-solving approach to addressing designers' needs and concentrates on process, rather than technological detail, to keep from being quickly outdated. It pays close attention to the capabilities and limitations of the medium in question and discusses the tradeoffs and challenges of design in a commercial environment. Divided into two sections, frameworks and techniques, the book discusses broad design methods and case studies that reflect key aspects of these approaches. The book then presents a set of techniques highly valuable to a practicing designer. It is intentionally not a comprehensive tutorial of user-centered design'as that is covered in many other books'but it is a handful of techniques useful when designing ubiquitous computing user experiences.
In short, Smart Things gives its readers both the "why" of this kind of design and the "how," in well-defined chunks.
- Tackles design of products in the post-Web world where computers no longer have to be monolithic, expensive general-purpose devices
- Features broad frameworks and processes, practical advice to help approach specifics, and techniques for the unique design challenges
- Presents case studies that describe, in detail, how others have solved problems, managed trade-offs, and met successes
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Part I: F rameworks 1 Chapter 1: Introduction: The Middle of Moore's Law Chapter 2: W hat Is User Experience Design and Who Creates It? Chapter 3: Interaction Metaphors Chapter 4: Information Is a Material Chapter 5: The Whirlpool centralparkT Refrigerator: The Design of an Accessory Port Chapter 6: Information Shadows Chapter 7: Clickables: Toys and Information Shadows Chapter 8: Devices Are Service Avatars Chapter 9: The iPod: A Service Avatar Chapter 10: Applianceness Chapter 11: RoomWizard: An Appliance for Office Society Chapter 12: Scales of Experience Chapter 13: Plasma Poster: Unifying Work Cultures with a Digital Poster
Part II T echniques Chapter 14: Observation and Ideation Chapter 15: Simulation and Sketching Chapter 16: Nabaztag, an Ambiguous Avatar Chapter 17: Augmentations and Mashups Chapter 18: Common Design Challenges Chapter 19: From Invisible Computing to Everyware
Mike Kuniavsky is a user experience designer, researcher and author. A twenty-year veteran of digital product development, Mike is a consultant and the co-founder of several user experience centered companies: ThingM manufactures products for ubiquitous computing and the Internet of Things; Adaptive Path is a well-known design consultancy. He is also the founder and organizer of Sketching in Hardware, an annual summit on the future of tools for digital product user experience design for leading technology developers, designers and educators. Mike frequently writes and speaks on digital product and service design, and works with product development groups in both large companies and startups. His most recent book is Smart Things: Ubiquitous Computing User Experience Design.