In this post I cover an introduction to what usability is, how to make usable software and how you can check to make sure you app is usable!
This post is based on a presentation that I have been giving at Southampton University and Imperial College for the past 7 years or so. The presentation has evolved significantly over time and has become focused on mobile interfaces in particular, but the principles discussed apply to usability on any software platform.
What usability isn’t
Before we cover what usability is, just a word on what it isn’t. Many people equate usability with good visual design. Although good visual design can often help with usability by making things clear and easy to understand, swishy graphics alone do not make software usable. The Toyota website shown in the screen capture below provides a good example to demonstrate that.
The web page is very pretty, and has a very…
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