Cross Post: The ABC interviewed me about being a Usability Specialist

29 October, 2008

About a year ago the ABC interviewed me about being a Usability Specialist. They came and videoed me up at the usability lab I use, my home office and even speaking at a conference. It was all quite fun.

Anyway, today I accidently found a photo of myself on the ABC Science website with a link to the interview with me. You can read about my job and watch the video interview here

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iPhone 10×10

30 July, 2008

I want to video interview 10 people with 10 questions about their new iPhone (Australians) and then put it up online somewhere.

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Rethinking applications for mobile is also likely to result in better desktop apps

3 June, 2008

At Web Directions South User Experience, an audience member asked if I thought that people will use mobile apps on their desktop because they are distilled versions of their standard desktop counterparts.
I think:
1. The contextual aspect of SOME mobile services, will mean they won’t be as useful, or not useful at all, on the desktop.
2. There will be mobile applications that work well as ‘widgets’ on desktops and that people will use for a quick interactions or fast access to content.

However, I also believe developers/designers will benefit from re-thinking the interface to simplify it for mobile. Here’s a quote from Cultured Code, the developer of the Mac GTD application; Things:
“While developing Things touch [for iPhone] does draw significant amounts of resources from the desktop version, it is in fact rather beneficial for it too. Recreating Things for the iPhone made simplicity even more predominant. We learned a couple of things from the process that will help us to make the desktop version even better. The same goes for the data model code. Having had the opportunity to incorporate all the lessons we’ve learned from the desktop version resulted in a fresh new code base that will find its way back into Things, providing an even better foundation for its future development.”

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Making good design better

10 May, 2008

Hw do you improve on the Post-it note?

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I [heart] OmniFocus α

23 June, 2007

Yesterday I got my invite to check out the alpha version of the new OmniGroup application, OmniFocus (for MacOSX). I am a huge OmniGroup fan and their applications are some of my most used work tools (OmniOutliner, OmniGraffle and starting to use OmniPlan). They make great looking, useful, usable software.

OmniFocus is a personal productivity/task management application to support the Getting Things Done philosophy. It allows me to articulate all the steps I have to do both for work and other and log them in a centralised place that creates rich relationships and allows me to view the tasks according to date and context etc.

As mentioned it’s in alpha and apparently about 2,500 people are checking it out. It did crash on me once and lost all the data, but it also has a back-up function which I am using now :-). Obviously you shouldn’t be using alpha software for work critical stuff, but once this software is finalised I will strongly recommend it.

It apparently synchronises with Apple’s iCal, though I’m a little wary of letting muck around with my iCal (read: lifeline) while it’s in alpha. I’m really hoping there is a tight integration between the two.

Things I would like to see in future versions:
1. Integration with Apple AddressBook so that there is a relationship between people you need to do tasks with and their contact details and vice versa, so I can look at a contact and see what tasks are associated with them. (Palm Desktop used to do this brilliantly)
2. Integration with OmniPlan as there is obviously a lot of overlap between project management and task management.
3. I think it would be awesome if there is an online version of this for the iPhone

There are two screencasts (Intro & parallel projects) showcasing the software that I recommend taking a look at, if you want to know more.

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Four years ago…

19 June, 2007

Four years ago I went out for dinner with JD to catch up. By the end of the dinner I had decided to start my own company. It’s been an amazing experience and given me lots of opportunities, interesting projects, great clients, fun adventures and a pretty good lifestyle.

Here’s to the next 4!

[I wrote the above this morning and hadn’t yet posted it. By pure coincidence, JD was passing through and we went for lunch – heh!]

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Clearly I’m not a Graphic Designer…

13 June, 2007

“You have to be beautiful, to create something beautiful.”

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