Look At All The Lovely Users


I think that it is necessary to say that all of the sucess that a website could ever get is through happy users. The only way you can know about a user's happiness is through usability testing. There is nothing wrong with testing, think of it as a form of constructive criticism that all of us must endure. Krug describes how usability tests are an "iterative process", like a revision of a manuscript. However, I think that we have a luxary that professional web desigeners do not have. We have the ability to make a coalition of testing forces through the sake of education. When out in the real world, these tests churn out a lot of dollars, even at the discounted price of $300 will cause problems for us. That is how important opinion is to the web. Without it, the would not be a clear standard when it comes to websites.


I like the idea of us having the opportunity that professional web designers don't. That's sort of true. We do have the chance to do these kinds of test, completely free. It's a great chance that can, and will, teach us a lot.

I would say we have an advantage too with tesing because everything is provided for us. We have an assignment, computer, and peers. It is just up to us to record the reactions and do what we want with the feedback. I think this will give us a good headstart if you do ever create a site for a company someday but whos to say that even as a professioal you have to spend any money on usability testing? I'm pretty sure its not a law? Why don't they use a camera of their own, take the footage to a couple colleagues and discuss what happens? That is if you find a tester who is willing to do it for free.

You mentioned revising a manuscript and, for a while, you had lost me in your blog but that comparison brought me back to an understanding. I revised one of my manuscripts last year during an internship and it was hard! I had to learn how to take constructive criticism and edit over parts that I had seen (and edited) at least 20 times already. But, in the end, it was all worth it.