What’s on YOUR New Year’s Resolutions?

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You’re reading the UX Career Newsletter, a weekly roundup of useful design nuggets to keep you update to date in our industry. You can sign up for the UX newsletter here.

Plan your next trip! [The Best UX and Design Events in 2020]

Many seasoned UX designers suggest that attending events and networking with professionals are great ways to continue learning more about UX. Fabricio Teixeira compiled a comprehensive list in the UX Collective of design events, meetups, and conferences to consider adding to your 2020 itinerary. 

It should be worth noting that although this list highlights all the awesome big events happening monthly, you should also follow events in your area too! LinkedIn, Meetup.com, and Eventbrite are great starter sites to find local communities and happenings. 

Just Another Design Trend [Neumorphism is Not a Replacement]

Many blog posts and Twitter posts have been naming various trends that will dominate UX Designer in 2020, such as Neumorphism. But really, others are saying it’s just another design trend to be on the lookout for in UI Design. Kanhaiya Sharma explains what Neumorphism is good for and some resources for designers to get started. 

As a designer, it’s important to consider the accessibility of using Neumorphism. While aesthetically it looks clean and simple, realistically, it is not for everyone. Beyond those who have vision impairments, those with lower quality screens or lower screen contrasts are also unable to enjoy these designs. It’s not fun when it’s not made for everyone! 

Plans Booked! [UX Beginner Reading List]

Is reading on your New Year’s Resolution list for 2020? UX Beginner’s awesome list of 35 user experience books is a good place to jumpstart! Here, you’ll find some staples such as Don Norman’s The Design of Everyday Things: Revised and Expanded Edition and Jennifer Tidewell’s Designing Interfaces: Patterns for Effective Interaction Design. The books are loosely categorized but include my take on why the book’s worth reading. 

If you’re looking for some career moves, Nadya Tsech shares her Impactful Product Books from 2019 which includes her top 3 books that helped her plan her career while considering product design and management. She also lists 5 books that are focused on product building process: design systems, AI, workshop planning, mentoring and team building. If you’re looking for some awesome reads besides the standard design books, these are some that can help you build your hard and soft skills. 

Plot-twist?! [Why I Don’t Believe in Empathic Design]

Don Norman coined the term ‘user experience’ in the ’90s when he joined Apple as their first User Experience Architect (the first use of the phrase “User Experience” in a job title). As a human-centered design pioneer, Don explains why he’s not sold on the idea of empathy in design. 

Don explains that it’s impossible to have empathy. He states that he often doesn’t understand the things he does, suggesting that the “conscious mind has little or no empathy with my subconscious”. Rather, he advocates for human-centered design processes because it means that as a designer, we immerse ourselves into the problem to understand what the real issues and what people’s real needs are to create impactful solutions. The key point here is that when looking at only data and other collected research, it is easy to misunderstand what the user was suggesting. Could it be that empathy introduces bias?

Good UX Example: Elastic Scrolling on iOS

(def.) Elastic Scrolling — (sometimes referred to as scroll ‘rubber-banding’, or ‘scroll bouncing’) is often used to refer to the effect you see when you scroll to the top or bottom of a page where the element or page springs back and aligns itself back to its top/bottom.

While iOS generally isn’t known for the greatest features, it does offer the use of friction that is considered as great design. Suppose you’re scrolling through UX Beginner’s homepage, to skim what the site has to offer. Because you’re on mobile, everything is scaled and there’s more vertical scroll. To let you know that you’ve reached the end, the page increases the scrolling difficulty and jumps back to the last element. You’ve reached the footer. 

Why this is good UX: In many cases, adding friction to design should proceed with extreme caution. While it may be cool to add these animations for users to interact with, it shouldn’t take away from the experience or confuse the user. The elastic scroll here is an example of good UX because it dissuades users from continuing to scroll, which indicates that there is no more scrolling available. As you can see in the action above, the page is harder to school, and it’s no longer available. This is an intuitive experience for users! 

Some key takeaways: Elastic scrolling is an example of good friction for user actions because it is intuitive – don’t implement these animations for the sake of aesthetics and novelty if you have other viable options! 

Remote UX Jobs

Dutchie is seeking a Senior Product Designer to join their e-commerce business as a leading online-ordering cannabis dispensary throughout the US. In this role, you’d be directly responsible for the creation of features that will ship to production on a daily basis. If you like fast-paced and autonomy, this could be your next move as a product designer

Dataquest is an interactive online learning platform for data science. They’re looking for a Senior Product Designer who’s passionate about sharing helping students quickly become job-ready. If you have at least 5 years of relevant work and familiarity with startup remote work, Dataquest would love for you to join their team! Bonus if you have experience working in online learning/education. 

Shopify is a well-known e-commerce platform that has everything you need to sell online, on social media, or in-person. They’re searching for a UX Manager, Polaris who will join their team to experience leaders to uncover new challenges. This posting will close Friday, January 10th at 9:00 AM EST so be quick if you’re readying to apply!

10up is seeking a UX Designer with at least 3 years of experience in UX to join their growing team. While this job is completely remote, there is a need for a willingness to support occasional travel to client sites. If you have experience with WordPress as a platform (creating custom post types, taxonomies, etc.), this would be a great boost for your application. Bucca is hiring for a Junior UX whos interested in startups, mobile apps, SaaS, the blockchain cryptocurrency space (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Stellar, EOS, Hyperledger, and dApp’s) and have a natural talent in crafting elegant experiences. If you’re not afraid to challenge yourself and have a great sense of humor, this might be the perfect fit!

About the Author

Kim Chung

Designer, foodie, and lover of aesthetics.

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