Review of: Don’t Make Me Think, by Steve Krug

I learned a lot from reading Don’t Make Me Think, by Steve Krug. It was written in a very entertaining way that kept the reader interested and included images and cartoons to help make the books points in an easy way to understand. The most important thing I learned from this book was on the very first page of chapter 1. It answers the question, “What’s the most important thing I should do if I want to make sure my site or app is easy to use?” The answer is of course the title of the book, “Don’t make me think!” When people are using a site or app it should be so simple the user is not confused and thinking about how to use the website or app. They should not have to try and figure out how it works because of how simple the site should be for the user. The site or app should help the user to easily navigate through it. To make it easy to navigate through it should include persistent navigation tools such as sections or search, a home button, page numbers, and indicating what page you are currently on. I also learned how it is important to know how people use the web. Most of the time people don’t have time to read a whole page so they end up scanning or glancing for what they are looking for. Omitting needless words is another great way to improve your site and keep it simple for the user to scan. Based on the reading, I learned that a good way to improve your website and allow the user to scan it quickly includes: taking advantage of convections, create effective visual hierarchies, break the pages up into clearly defined areas, make it obvious what is clickable, eliminate distractions, and format the content to support scanning. Another lessen was when a user is clicking through the site it shouldn’t require any thought and should be mindless. 

It is very easy for conflicts to occur because everyone brings to the table their own view of how things should work or look like. Arguments are a waste of time and can be avoided by testing with real users. Usability tests should be kept simple and done often. Testing with different people gives a completely different perspective. It is also important to take into consideration when designing an app for a smart phone or a website. The basic principles are the same, but there are some differences about mobile apps that can make new usability problems. Some good suggestions for mobile sights is allow zooming and always provide a link to the full website. Not only is it important for your website to have clarity for the users, but also for it to be considerate of them. This can be done by asking, “Does my site behave like a mensch?” You want to keep the reservoir of goodwill high for the user because as it lowers, the viewer is less likely to use your site again. Making your app or website accessible and including usability where you live and work are also important things to note. I enjoyed reading this book. It was straight to the point, easy to read, and had illustrations that helped support what was being talked about. I think based on what I learned from my reading, the most important things to think about when making a website is keeping it simple, making it easy to scan, navigateandclick through, omitting needless words, testing usability instead of wasting time and augmenting, keeping usability tests simple and doing them often, and being considerate of the user. 

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