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Old 01-19-2009, 08:11 PM
Jon Bolt
 
Default Contributing usability expertise to ubuntu project

Hi

I was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction in
terms of contact information or resources related to usability and the
Ubuntu desktop.

I want to start contributing my user experience expertise to the Ubuntu
community. Currently I work for a user experience consultancy as a
usability analyst, although my background is in software development.

Although I will have to okay it with my employer, I would like to start
working with different projects under the Ubuntu or Gnome umbrella. I
have experience in using a wide variety of usability techniques, both in
academic and commercial environments.

So if anyone would like to point me in the way of contacts that would be
great. Additionally, if any project developers would like me to
collaborate with them, please let me know.

Kind Regards

Jon Bolt


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Old 01-21-2009, 10:17 AM
Odysseus Flappington
 
Default Contributing usability expertise to ubuntu project

2009/1/19 Jon Bolt <jon@idnzor.net>:
> Hi
>
> I was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction in
> terms of contact information or resources related to usability and the
> Ubuntu desktop.
>
> I want to start contributing my user experience expertise to the Ubuntu
> community. Currently I work for a user experience consultancy as a
> usability analyst, although my background is in software development.
>
> Although I will have to okay it with my employer, I would like to start
> working with different projects under the Ubuntu or Gnome umbrella. I
> have experience in using a wide variety of usability techniques, both in
> academic and commercial environments.
>
> So if anyone would like to point me in the way of contacts that would be
> great. Additionally, if any project developers would like me to
> collaborate with them, please let me know.
>
> Kind Regards
>
> Jon Bolt
>
>
> --
> ubuntu-desktop mailing list
> ubuntu-desktop@lists.ubuntu.com
> https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-desktop
>

It's a shame no one responded to your email. Usabillity is something
we really need to focus on. Perhaps re-send your above email to
ubuntu-devel-discuss to see if any of the devs point you in the right
direction.

Jono Bacon made a call for ideas on better facilitating usability
contributions on his blog a while back, but we haven't really seen
anything come of it.

Right now, the only way I can see to contribute usability experience
to Ubuntu is to submit specific usability bugs to individual projects
(i.e. just a regular bug-report about a usability issue you've
identified), is that a framework you feel you could contribute
through? How better could projects implement usability development?

Thanks,
Alex

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Old 01-21-2009, 12:48 PM
Matthew Paul Thomas
 
Default Contributing usability expertise to ubuntu project

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Hash: SHA1

Hi Jon

Jon Bolt wrote on 19/01/09 21:11:
>...
> I want to start contributing my user experience expertise to the Ubuntu
> community. Currently I work for a user experience consultancy as a
> usability analyst, although my background is in software development.

Welcome, and thanks for getting involved!

> Although I will have to okay it with my employer, I would like to start
> working with different projects under the Ubuntu or Gnome umbrella. I
> have experience in using a wide variety of usability techniques, both in
> academic and commercial environments.

Excellent. One thing Ubuntu (and Free Software generally) has been
chronically short of, so far, is methodical user testing. If you have
the resources to do that, it would be very useful to test basic tasks
such as acquiring a copy of Ubuntu in the first place, installing
Ubuntu, connecting to the Internet, getting a photo off a digital camera
and printing it, sending an e-mail message, printing a birthday card, or
finding and playing a video on YouTube.

For improving specific programs, it's generally most productive to work
on changes with the individual projects themselves, many of which are
part of Gnome. <http://live.gnome.org/UsabilityProject>

You're already on the right mailing list for discussing Ubuntu's
interface. Our other major communication methods are IRC (which I'm told
you've been using already), the Ubuntu wiki <https://wiki.ubuntu.com/>,
and Launchpad <https://launchpad.net/ubuntu>.

> So if anyone would like to point me in the way of contacts that would be
> great. Additionally, if any project developers would like me to
> collaborate with them, please let me know.
>...

I work for Canonical in our Design team, specializing in Ubuntu (I'm
"mpt" on IRC). Other people involved in usability in the Ubuntu
community include Celeste Lyn Paul ("seele", specializing in Kubuntu and
KDE), Andreas Nilsson ("andreasn"), Martin Albisetti ("beuno"), and Rick
Spencer ("rickspencer3").

Cheers
- --
Matthew Paul Thomas
http://mpt.net.nz/
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Old 01-22-2009, 09:57 PM
Jon Bolt
 
Default Contributing usability expertise to ubuntu project

Hi Matthew

On Wed, 2009-01-21 at 13:48 +0000, Matthew Paul Thomas wrote:
> -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
> Hash: SHA1
>
> Hi Jon
>
> Jon Bolt wrote on 19/01/09 21:11:
> >...
> > I want to start contributing my user experience expertise to the Ubuntu
> > community. Currently I work for a user experience consultancy as a
> > usability analyst, although my background is in software development.
>
> Welcome, and thanks for getting involved!
>
> > Although I will have to okay it with my employer, I would like to start
> > working with different projects under the Ubuntu or Gnome umbrella. I
> > have experience in using a wide variety of usability techniques, both in
> > academic and commercial environments.
>
> Excellent. One thing Ubuntu (and Free Software generally) has been
> chronically short of, so far, is methodical user testing. If you have
> the resources to do that, it would be very useful to test basic tasks
> such as acquiring a copy of Ubuntu in the first place, installing
> Ubuntu, connecting to the Internet, getting a photo off a digital camera
> and printing it, sending an e-mail message, printing a birthday card, or
> finding and playing a video on YouTube.

I think looking at key user journeys like you listed above is a really
good idea.

First of all I will have to get a decent lab set-up going, which
involves recording the desktop and capturing the web cam. This is
something we do in work with Windows pretty successfully and the clients
seem to enjoy the end product. I will have to look into how to set this
up in Gnome.

Getting participants is the issue, however. If its the general public we
want, they would expect rewards. We typically give 50 an hour to
people. I am sure there are Ubuntu users who would be willing to give up
their time for free, however, that probably isn't the user segment we
are looking at.

The cheapest option is probably head up to my local university and give
students 5 for taking part. Other than that, my friends and family I
guess.

It would be good to get something going at local Ubuntu events, kind of
a bring-a-noob day, where there could be a portable usability lab set-up
and people could try to get their windows or mac friends to come in
participate in usability testing.

> For improving specific programs, it's generally most productive to work
> on changes with the individual projects themselves, many of which are
> part of Gnome. <http://live.gnome.org/UsabilityProject>

Hopefully in between doing user testing I will look to do usability
reviews of different projects, reporting issues and recommendations
where appropriate. It's kind of hard to know where to start but I would
probably just look at some of the most active projects out there.

Kind Regards

Jon


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