Tag Archives: Breakthrough ideas

3D Wireframes Are The Future

3D is now very popular and we have seen many 3D in websites. A effective prototype should be created if we want to conduct a user study of 3D website. How can we mock up the system with high fidelity? 3D wireframes is a good way to present that and the next generation in UX must be 3D wireframes.

3D wireframes can display the objects using 3D points which embed z-coordinates inside the Shape field. They can display shadows and depth of the items which is different from 2D wireframe mode. 3D wireframes take the advantage of 3D models which is more flexible, have greater depth and make your prototype stand out. They have high fidelity prototypes which can simulate the real product realistically. These are useful for conducting user study and usability testing.


These days, it is not very difficult to develop high-fidelity prototype  even though you know nothing about a programming language. There are a variety of simulation tools to choose and allow non-technical UX designers to create their product without coding. We can use AutoCAD Illustrator or other graphic tools to create 3D wireframes.  It is very effective when we match 3D wireframes to a reference model. We don’t need to spend many hours on a very detailed and complex mockup. Just shape the outline and simply the model. The 3D wireframes will be changed sooner or later. It is not a good idea to perfect it.


We can print 2D wireframes very easily with a printer. How can we print our 3D wireframes? The 3D printer! They are becoming more and more common place in medical field. It is obvious to see that 3D printers will be more  widely used in user experience area. It offers new abilities in design and technology. We can print a real, tangible, three-dimensional object and make a reference. There are a lot of things for us to explore and the future is here!


Leave a comment

Posted by on December 9, 2012 in Breakthrough Ideas



The Future of User Interface Design

User interfaces are everywhere: on mobile phones, websites, television, washing machine, etc. We have seen a lot of revolution in technology in 2012. So what will 2013 bring? What will the interface be like in 2013?

Focus more on users

No matter how creative the future interface will be, it always focuses on what users need. The goal of user interface design is to satisfy most users and make the interaction more simple and intuitive. In the future, our designers should conduct more detailed research on potential users.  Reveal issues and opportunities, identity users’ needs and experience, and then generate new ideas or insight.


More smart

IPhone is smart.  Kinect is smart. They know too much about us. The GUI can obtain information from the individual and don’t make user think. In my opinion, these wizards can collect information from us automatically with 100 percent accuracy in the future. That means we will get rid of extensive user input. We don’t need to spend time in switching between screens. So cool! They can capture our emotions and voices. They will communicate with users naturally and instantly.


Rich interaction and customizations

There are many types of user interfaces and we need to explore more in the future.  For example, users can hack a wearable computer with a heads-up display. The new tech can recognize people’s body language and voice. They save a lot of things in memory and know what we like and dislike to help us make better choice. Moreover, there is a new trend of intelligent wear- neural based interfaces. We can tweet, post even send emails in the brain. What an amazing future! The new tech covers various augmented reality and data visualization technology. Machine will be part of our life and behaves just like our hands, feet and even brain.


Leave a comment

Posted by on December 7, 2012 in Breakthrough Ideas



How To Be a Good UX Designer

There is a huge need for talented user experience designers in the US now.  We should grasp the opportunity and practice ourselves a lot. But what makes a good UX designer and how can we prepare for that? There are several skills and qualities which is very important in my opinion to be a good UX designer.

1. Passion and curiosity to learn about people and technology

As a user experience designer, we should always keep our eyes open to the world and see different things instead of adapting to the environment. We have passion for learning more about people when they interact with digital products. We are very curious about the way things are going on and how we can make stuff better. The passion and curiosity drives a lot of the creative thinking in the user experience area. Without curious, energetic and creativity, new ideas can not emerge. Remember that we are focusing on real person. We observe users’ behavior, talk with them, ask them questions, spend time with them and have a purpose to enhance their lives. What a wonderful thing! We use technology to make things better and even better. Everytime, ask why, why things goes like this, why we need to change that, etc. Everywhere, we have a desire to know about potential users. By doing so, creative ideas are around us.

2. In depth knowledge of user-centered design techniques and principles

Instead of only being familiar with user-centered design, we need to have a deep knowledge and understanding of these guidelines and principles. On one hand, we should have the ability to design the products like website and IPhone app with Adobe PhotoShop, Illustrator or other design tools. On the other hand, we have the ability to apply cognitive psychology and human computer interaction techniques to evaluate and test these systems. For example, we can choose the most appropriate personas, scenarios and create storyboards, wireframes and rapid prototyping.  With implementing user interface guidelines and standards, we collect data, analysis data and interpret results to meet business needs. The qualification is that we should have a strong understanding of the design process and deliver results that satisfy product goals best.

3. The ability to conduct scientific research

We are proficient with various tools and we know user-centered design guidelines. Why do we need to be a researcher? To answer the question, it is necessary to learn that UX designer is not just a designer, it is more like a versatile person. You are good at many things, especially conducting qualitative research to think about what user are thinking about.  If we go through some UX design positions, we can find that many requirements are a combination of graphic design skills, wireframing, rapid prototyping, designing researches such as user interview, usability testing, ethnographic research and so on.  A good user experience designer should be familiar with these researches and skilled in planning research, choosing the right qualitative method, collecting and analyzing data. Moreover, a good presentation of your findings and results is the key skill too. This is what we are doing in our CGT 512 class now. These things are closely related to our professional growth. Hopefully, we all can do a great job!


Posted by on November 28, 2012 in Breakthrough Ideas