Online Flight Booking - A Comparative Analysis

Frontend Usability Infocentre takes an in-depth look at designing ticket booking systems that help customers acheive their targets - and businesses sell their product. We suggest best-practice techniques for online ticket purchasing and look at who does it right, and who does it wrong.

Web Quality of Experience (QoE) Workgroup

Culled the link to this story about the Web Quality of Experience (QoE) Workgroup from CHIWEB. QoE said it will focus on attracting new members, developing an index to measure the usability of some of the Web's most popular sites, and opening a QoE Center of Excellence to design, test and document best practices and products.

WebWord turns 3

Congratulations and thanks WebWord! We love you, man.

Password Usability

Joshua Ledwell's guest article on WebWord. Poor password usability can ruin your web registration process. While passwords are a painful fact of life, there are ways to minimize the problems that users face. This article contains suggestions on how to best collect passwords during the registration process, and it will help you determine if you should allow users to save their passwords.

Usability Engineering for the Web: Designing Web Sites that Work

Webreference has a preview of Usability Engineering for the Web: Designing Web Sites that Work by Tom Brinck, Darren Gergle, Scott Wood (to be published October 2001).

Searching for Google's Successor

According to Wired News, A new generation of scrappy search engines is emerging to challenge the dominance of mighty Google. Among those vying for a top position are WiseNut, which ranks pages based on context; Teoma, which claims better relevance through peer-site weighted algorithms; Geographically oriented search engine Lassoo; Starpond's knowledge-scoped CURE; and the meta-search engine Vivisimo spun off from Carnie Mellon.

Blog en Espaņol?

I love referrer logs. I found terremoto.net today, which logs IA stuff. Even if you can't read Spanish, you're bound to find stuff by just following their links. Or better yet, you can run it through babelfish and have fun reading the cooky translations into your tongue. Here is a tasty example: Jeffrey Zeldman has published a column in site of Adobe, where she very makes a reflection guessed right about the practical confusion between style and design , and how that splashes directly to the usabilidad of which there is there outside. Did she indeed? That splashes directly.

Optavia

Optavia is a consulting firm that works with clients to design accessible and usable projects. Logging it on iaslash because they have a newsletter as well as several white papers discussing Accessibility and Usability.

eBay.com -- interface disorganized

InternetWorld's has a Deconstructing piece on Ebay.com. This month's break down comes from Joy Busse and Terry Swack. For a company with a brilliant business concept, the popular auction site needs more attention paid to its usability details

Another bloug diagram of IA attributes

New (and huge!)version of Jess McMullin's diagram depicting Lou Rosenfeld's July 19th discussion of the skills and qualities an IA should have, where he said: I see information architecture as the intersection of three areas (imagine yet another three-circled Venn diagram):

  • users: (who they are, what their information-seeking behaviors and needs are)
  • content: (volume, formats, metadata, structure, organization) context: (business model, business value, politics, culture, resources and resource constraints)

Hey, Hey, IA!

Hey, Hey, IA! -- "a resource-hub for Information Architects".

Style vs. Design

This is a particularly true and necessary read. Zeldman on style as a fetish -- graphic design versus communication design -- and where style for style's sake might hurt commercial projects. Here's a true and salient quote: The Web used to look like a phone book. Now much of it looks like a design portfolio. In fact, it looks like the design portfolio of 20 well-known designers, whose style gets copied again and again by young designers who consider themselves disciples. Distinctions between graphic design and communications design are lost on these designers. As is the distinction between true style, which evolves from the nature of the project, and derivative pastiche, which is grafted onto many projects like a third arm. When Style is a fetish, sites confuse visitors, hurting users and the companies that paid for the sites. thanks Lawrence Lee

Web Design and Information Architecture

The paper by O'Brien and Polovina of the School of Computing, Information Systems and Mathematics South Bank University, London, UK, discusses principles that IAs should consider in the design process. Web designers as Information Architects share responsibility for creating an infrastructure which allows effective access to all users. We present some preliminary information architecture principles for accessible Web design, and reveal that there is little evidence to support the optimism that there is a near-time technical solution that will solve Web access problems for people with print disabilities. Education is needed to ensure that scarce public resources are not squandered on electronic Follies. thanks infodesign

Making the Most of Interactivity Online

If you have access to Technical Communication, this article may interest you. (By the way, there is also an piece on GUI bloopers in the current issue.) Here is the abstract for the interactivity article. Technical communicators need to create effective online interactions to help users understand the scope, purpose, and limits of their online documents. Ideally, a well-designed online document provides an integrated data environment. It functions as the interface between the user and a system, allowing for the retrieval and assimilation of information needed to perform a task.

Registration Revamp

, you can produce a leaner system without inconveniencing your engineers or frustrating your marketers. Janice Crotty Fraser of Adaptive Path shows how she did it for Netscape in September's WebTechniques.

ASIST Annual Meeting Information

Information and registration forms are available for the ASIS 2001 Annual Meeting, "Information in a Networked World: Harnessing the Flow", November 3-8, 2001 in Washington DC.

Problems With Submitting an HTML Form Using the Enter Key

When a user fills out an HTML form, they have the ability to hit the keyboard Enter key, to activate the form submission. However, this feature doesn't work in certain instances. Ganemanrussel shows how to correct this problem.

IFLA's metadata resources index

There is a lengthy list of Metadata Resources on The International Federation of Library Associations and Institution site. See also the Cataloguing and Indexing of Electronic Resources.

Card sorting using software?

There's currently a discussion around card-sorting using software on SIG-IA and people mentioned IBM's EZSort and a java applet called WebCAT. I'm currently doing information organization on a large digital library so was interested to see if any of these tools would help the task. So I installed WebCAT on our OSX development server and was disappointed. I agree with Christina's comment that the task is best suited to the traditional method of index cards on a large table. WebCAT seemed buggy and because EZSort was in beta I had trouble even starting a card sort. This experience is starting to remind me of the Denim prototyping tool -- Denim worked pretty well comparatively. It's promising to see that applications are being developed. For now, however, I'm sticking with 3x5 cards, pencil, graph and trace paper, Visio, Illustrator and Excel (ugh) for my IA tasks.

IA surfing

Hey, do you surf HCI Index, WebWord, Xblog, Slashdot? Have you ever looked at the Surf/News filter page on iaslash? Much of the IA freshness culled from the day's news I get by reading the headlines snarfed from these sites. In the left column of the page are static links to the frequently surfed sites and the right column shows linked headlines grabbed daily from some of the biggies. Surfiliciousness.