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March 24, 2005 » 4:07 pm

More Usability Sprint Fallout

More fallout from the FLOSS Usability Sprint. A number of participants, spearheaded by Joel Aufrecht, have launched the Open Web GUI project. The idea is simple: Create highly usable web pages for common administrative CMS tasks and distribute them under an Open Source license. The motivation is simple. The administrative function of most Open Source CMSes are largely the same. One way they could help each other is to collaborate on developing a highly usable UI (including menu layout, workflow, etc.) for common tasks that any project can use. They’re looking for visual designers and usability folks to help out; check out the web site for more information.    (IG9)

I spoke at Bay CH I on March 8. We had a great turnout, including many of the participants from the sprint. It was great to see those familiar faces. (Has it really been only a month?) Richard Anderson blogged about my talk and contributed some anecdotes of his own. Tony Chang also blogged the talk, and reiterated a problem that Rashmi Sinha had made:    (IGA)

What are the incentives for usability analysts to help open source projects? Eugene mentioned having public work that one can cite in a resume, but there must be more than that…    (IGB)

Marketing isn’t the only incentive. There are folks who pay for Open Source work, but most of these folks aren’t hiring usability practitioners. One reason for doing this sprint was to make these people realize that they should. The money is there; it’s a matter of making the case that the money would be well spent by investing it in usability.    (IGC)

Finally, Mary Hodder has been taking the notion of Extreme Usability, which emerged from the sprint, and has been running like crazy with it. Her anecdotes are great, and I have a feeling that where she’s taking the notion will be even better.    (IGD)

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