HCI, User Experience, and Designing for Usability

The title is a rough summary of what I aim to study in graduate school. Yup, I’m applying.

I think the information industry is the perfect field for my skill set and interests because it’s a cool mix of other fields like computer science, psychology/cognitive science, and even the arts. Technical, scientific, and aesthetic.

As “preparation” for graduate school, I’ve been trying to read a book called, “The Design of Everyday Things.” So far I really like it and it describes a lot of things rigorously which we probably knew vaguely about why we get frustrated with many of the things we use everyday, like doors and light switches. Seems like a nuisance at first, but the faulty design principles extend to high-risk things like nuclear power plants and air planes. It’s clear why this is considered required reading for people in the user experience and product design fields.

I’ve also been doing some reading on the blogosphere, most of them related to web design. Here are some sites that I now follow, for those who might be interested:

Coming up, I hope to try to blog about things that I learn during this preparation and how they apply to objects that I use on a regular basis. Or just excerpts from what other people have written that I really liked.