Nov 2, 2008

A a little bit wiser.....

You don't know what life will throw at you. In stead of struggling and go against it, why not just go with the flow and see what will happen. It does not mean that you will never fall again, but a bit of experince will make you wiser.

Oct 8, 2007

Everyday conversation at Starbucks

SB: Good morning, how can I help you?
... I would like to have a Tall-Late please
SB: Would you like to try our new Green tea Late?
... No, I would like to have a Tall-Late please

SB: Would you like anything else?
... yes, a muffin please
SB: Would you like to try out the new blueberry pie?
... no, a muffin please

...and then I walk over the other side of the counter, waiting for my coffee
SB: What did you order?
...A Tall-Late please ( many times do I need to mention “Tall-Late" before I can my coffee?)

Sep 17, 2007

^_^ fun fun....

Airplane seat UI

I was on a business trip and was taken Asiana airline for the first time (BTW, service was great and food is excellent). This panel by my arm-rest immediately grabbed my attention (well, it is so big that you won't miss it). I have to say that it is a bit intimidating when first saw this interface. There are total of 16 directional arrows on this panel. I am afraid to touch any of the arrow and make myself look like a fool. I think the color makes me feel alarming.

Anyway, I finally had enough courage to touch the panel becuse I didn't want to seat up for more than 13 hours. I have to say that it is not difficult to use and yes I didn made fun of myself. I just thought that you may enjoy looking at this interface design and might inspire you to come up a better one.

Apr 8, 2007

Double standard or no trust?

Google’s just released a new Chinese input app last week. People are attacking Google for copying existing application. I really don’t know much about the true story. However, it troubles me that most of the major players in China internet market copied well known U.S. or Korean sites to being with their business and no one mention any thing about it. These sites are much more respected in this market than those multinational companies in China. It is true that none of the multinational companies do well in China, at least not in the internet industry. Is it a double standard or trust issue in this market?

Dec 14, 2006

User flow

A good UI does not just apply to a web site. It really impacts our everyday life. I am quite troubled by the escalator in our office building. For some reasons, the building manager switches the direction of the escalator randomly. I find myself and others walk against the direction constantly. Just like any good UI, a consistent behavior would be easier to use. You should not feel its existance if it's done right. Of course, I don't expect a building manager understand UI. I just want to rant about. ^^

Dec 7, 2006

Hsun, Xuan, 璇, 玄,...huh?

我的名字始终是个令我headache的事,可以一次把我的名字唸对的不到5個人, 包刮我的家人都唸错, 到我五年级我才知道正确的唸法. 介绍我的名字是一件挺累人的事, 无论对方是谁, 少不了来个中文大猜题. 我自己发明了几种介绍方式. 可是没多大用处.

因为我的名字是外公取的. 所以, 我妈不让我换名字. 几次之我就只好打消this idea, 我到了美国命运没有改变. 我以为可以不用再explain我的名字. well I was wrong.....因为我找不到一个适合我的英文名字(I know,我有点picky)...再加上所有ID多是英译中文名, 改文件是很touble的. 也就罢了. 但是最糟的是台式翻译实在是离谱 (外交部的英文有问题). Hsun念起来就像是个印度名字"H"不发音或只发气音, 所以大部分的westerners 会发 sun or ha-sun. 在'我不断的校正之下, 我可怜的同事及friends, 只好被force to remember and pronounce it correctly.

自我搬到China, 我又发现了新的现象, 我的中文很像China的名字, 两个字. 但是, 我的英文名带来许多人的"不了"表情. Oh well, I guess I am stuck with it forever now. People can pronounce "绚丽", but people have problem pronounce "绚"with other words….interesting, isn't it? ^ ^

很有成就感, 打字有进步 (on and off 打了好几天---hehe)

Design Matters show

You can access Debbie Millman's Design Matters show from here.

Dec 6, 2006

75 or 95?

In my round table discussion at the UPA 2006 conference, the number “75” came up when we were discussing “How to balance the market needs and user needs?” with a group of western and local design professionals. "75" was brought up by one of local designers from a well known site. He said that their company release a product when it is about 75% done and modify it after it is released. This theory got people interested and heavily debated about it. One guy from Baidu told an interesting story about his grand father and the story reflected the opposite opinion of the “75” theory. (This story reminded me that Chinese are smart, strategic and know how to survive. I will tell the story next time.)

Personally, I believe a product should focus on the key values for users. “Experiences” means more than “features”. I agree with Baidu Guo Yu's 先减后加 approch. Build what matters to user first and build the additional features around it later. It provides good balance to obtain users and provide quality services.

Clearly, China is a fast growing and rapidly changing market. In order to acquire users and complete with others, most of the local companies launch product quickly (75%) and fix it later. This strategy works on some of the well known products like QQ. However, in my opinion, this strategy will work only when the company is still small. It will hurt product and damage brand reputation if you are a much mature company. Most of the users have higher expectation on a well known brand. We all know that it takes a village to build a brand.

After working for international company in China for about a year, I understand the 75% does not just mean 75% of the product. It means the system needs to provide the flexibilities for quick response to the users, market and nimble process. This is one of the reasons why international internet companies are suffering in this market.