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Observing the User Experience by Mike Kuniavsky

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CHAPTER 10 Usability Tests

A one-on-one usability test can quickly reveal an immense amount of information about how people use a prototype, whether functional, mock-up, or just paper. Usability testing is probably the fastest and easiest way to tease out showstopping usability problems before a product launches.

Usability tests are structured interviews focused on specific features in an interface prototype. The heart of the interview is a series of tasks that are performed by the interface’s evaluator (typically, a person who matches the product’s ideal audience). Tapes and notes from the interview are later analyzed for the evaluator’s successes, misunderstandings, mistakes, and opinions. After a number of these tests have been performed, ...

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