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Useless Usability

17 Jun 2004

I’ve often told people that usability testing should be a culture, not an event. That is, it should happen as part of a Web team’s daily/weekly/monthly design process, not a big show-stopping research phase that happens before something new launches. Test early, test often.

In his latest essay for the Adaptive Path Web site, my partner Lane Becker digs into why this is so important.

When viewed as a sort of quality assurance, as it classically is, usability testing becomes a late-stage nice-to-have, less important than getting the newest version of the Web site out the door. It usually results in a thick document that outlines everything that's wrong with a Web application, including fundamental design issues that can't be fixed in the few weeks left before launch. This isn't the best way to effect positive change.

Read the whole essay here. ​

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