I originally posted this piece on the Round Two website (the precursor to Flock) in April of last year, and it appears that I now have some corroboration from the Association for Computing Machinery. Of course I never finished the follow up post, but Andreas Pfeiffer seems to have hit the mark.
As a full time user experience architect and user advocate, it is my job to make technology more accessible, usable and more pleasurable to use. I do this work because I enjoy it and find it immensely important and fulfilling.
I know that the cultural artifacts that I produce (in the form of web interfaces) immediately affect the lives of people who touch my work. And if I don’t do my job well, they’re liable to experience frustration, annoyances or other less-than-positive feelings. Since I have utter control over whatever ends up on the screen (or output thru a screen reader), I have a duty and responsibility to make wise and measured choices so that those less-than-positive feelings never arise and instead are countered by feelings of empowerment, amusement and satisfaction.
It has occurred to me more and more over the last few months that my work is not at all unique, but a larger, more pervasive trend towards user-centered design. While there are still immense opportunities for taking improving the design of interfaces (both web and application-based), I believe that we are ushering in a decade of design innovation dedicated to improving user experience.
In my next post, I will discuss the four emerging families of user experience design and what they mean for web, application and workflow design.