Tuesday, October 9, 2012

DSDN 112: Usability Testing

So, today in class we did something that in my opinion should have been something I would have thought we'd do during the first part of the project. Now that it's finished, it almost seems like a semi-obsolete exercise. We did some user testing of our interfaces and got our classmates to evaluate and give us feedback on our flash programs.

Part of the usability testing we did revolved around the 5 elements of a good interface. These five things are Learnability, Efficiency, Memorability, Errors and Satisfaction.

My testing victim had some interesting things to say about my interface, as well as some good feedback on the design.

Usability: Having the constantly available return button as well as the other buttons visible and detailed on the fingers of the left hand was a really good feature in terms of usability. The ability to always jump back if you went the wrong way in the application and having that function always in the exact same spot is a good consideration.

Efficiency: Having each button with an emblem and the name of it definitely allows for efficient manoeuvring between the screens of the application.

Memorability: The big thing with memorability for this application is that you don't need to remember how to navigate it really. All the buttons available are always detailed and available, so the learning curve is virtually non-existent. The only thing you can get better at with this app is speed.

Errors: The only errors evident in the app were errors that I had made with Flash. Possibly ensuring that there are cross-element functions such as being able to get to your class from messages.

Satisfaction: According to my victim, the app was really satisfying to use due mostly to the parts where it runs itself. The animations were cool and the whole notion of using an app on your arms was said to be awesome.

One of the problems that came up was that apparently if the app was actually on one's arm, one would be inclined to tap one's fingers when the options were presented on them. So I thought I could make the app work with a dual functionality in that respect. Having it function with both options would mean that it could work for people who only want to use one hand, or it could also work for the more professional users who want speed who could use both hands.

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