Usability Design : A framework for designing usable interactive systems in practice

Abstract: Today many companies have started to become aware of the advantages of doing user-centred design. However, it is extremely rare that companies adopt a fully integrated user-centred design approach in one strategic shift. Rather, companies tend to adopt practices and methods in stages or adopt a particular method or practice only when a complex set of factors align to create readiness. There is a big market for companies vending usability methods, but poor usability of systems and products is still very common, the vendors often blaming it on factors outside their immediate influence. This among other things is a call for us to work for a user-centred design attitude as a major strategy for the system development process.The content of this thesis is dedicated to the question of how to develop usable interactive systems in practice. Main focus is on how we can raise the awareness of usability; articulate the need for user-centred design within the industry and development organisations; and practice user-centred design. A framework for usability design as an unpretentious way of applying user-centred design is described and discussed.