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The User Experience Team of One: A Research…
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The User Experience Team of One: A Research and Design Survival Guide

by Leah Buley

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Review copy provided by O'Reilly Press

There are plenty of books on user experience, heck there are probably 5 more being written right now. So why should you read Leah Buley's "The User Experience Team of One?" Not only is this a well written book, but Leah also fills a current void in the UX literature, which is some of the challenges that someone might face trying to start a UX program at their POW. Leah not only answers addresses this challenge, but also provides a solid framework of how to construct a plan, gain support from your colleagues, and how to show management that this is a worthwhile pursuit.

This book is dived up into two primary sections: philosophy and practice. The philosophy section is relatively short and provides a solid foundation for those just beginning to work with UX. This section walks us through the history of UX (tracing it back to the 18th century), the theory and philosophy of UX, and how to grow your career within the UX field.

The primary bulk of the book however, is devoted to putting UX into practice. Leah walks through some basic tools of the UX trade. While none of them are covered in depth, it does give a good basic understanding of how a tool works, such as the different types of surveys that might be conducted. What is even more important to me however, is that Leah doesn't just focus on UX as being a webdesign only tool. Instead she offers tips and advice that can be used for any project, including redesigning an office space or even just the layout of computers. She also offers good practical advice on how to administer these tips and tricks remotely, which is important if you're part of a larger company or offering your services to clients in different states.

As I mentioned above, Leah offers good advice on how to get buy in from the rest of the organization, which is often the biggest challenge in the UX world. She offers great advice on how to explain UX and immerse folks in the process from the beginning to help build support.

If you're interested in UX or already involved in the field, this is a good resource to have handy. While some of what's offered might be old hat to seasoned professionals, I'm willing to bet that Leah offers some new ideas to put into practice. I give the book 4 out of 5 stars, and it definitely has a place on my shelf. ( )
  zzshupinga | Dec 20, 2013 |
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