Jesse James Garrett: Delivering Rich Experiences (Web 2.0 Expo, Berlin) [en]

*Here are my notes of the end of Jesse James Garrett’s keynote. There might be bits and pieces missing and I may have misunderstood things. Thanks for bearing with me.*

*steph-note: missed the beginning, sorry.*

MS Word Displaying All Toolbars!

Word Toolbars all turned on sends the following message:

“Word processing is complicated. In fact, it’s so complicated that we, the developers of this tool, haven’t figured it out. So, we’re outsourcing that job (figuring it out) to you, our users.”

Look at video cassette recorders. They’ve come a long way these last 30 years, lots of buttons but… nobody seems to be able to set the clock, still now.

Mentions something Steve Jobs said in 1984.

Beautiful, elegant solution that works.

The product has aesthetic appeal (beautiful), maximises simplicity (elegant), has to address a genuine need/desire (solution) — many startups out there fail because they don’t address a real need — and can be used by its users, not just by us, its creators (that works).

Even MS word has started to get this. They’ve moved beyond toolbars. More simplicity. Not there yet maybe, but real progress. The new interface is much cleaner and simpler.

Last generation of video cassette recorders. Now, we have TiVo. But TiVo was only made possible by really taking a step back. Look at TiVo users: passionate. Users develop an emotional attachment to products which deliver on those four points.

Research seems to show that there is something different happening in our brains when we interact with complex technological tools. *steph-note: some variety of pets?* Like our interactions with other people, same mechanisms in our brains. We respond to these products as if they were people. We imagine they have personalities, moods… 12-year-old girl who kissed her iPod goodnight before going to bed on the day she got it. Or adults whose iPod breaks, go out and buy a new one, but can’t open the box for two days, because it would mean they have to say good-bye to their old, broken, companion.

iPod case “iGuy”. TiVo logo that has arms and legs.

Products who know who they are, and reflect a consistency in their behaviour.

Experiment: have users try software and evaluate it. One group, user same computer for both tasks. Group 2, different computer. Group 1 were nicer with their feedback, almost as if they didn’t want to *hurt the computer’s feelings*.

**Diamond Rio**, first mp3 player commercially available. Looked like a transformative product, so much that the record industries went to court to have it banned in the US. But nobody remembers it! Everybody remembers the iPod as the first mp3 player. Met with a lot of skepticism. (ipod = “idiots price our devices”). Too expensive, not enough features. But actually, it’s a beautiful elegant solution that works.

Developing software applications: we talk about them as data, wrapped in logic, and a user interface. User interface = shell.

But in the minds of our users: there is the user interface, and magic inside.

When we make choices about our products based on things that our users cannot see, we’re going in the wrong direction.

But this is changing. The web (2.0) is leading the way. We make decisions about the user interface first, and allow those decisions to drive technological choices. “Designing from the outside in.” (O’Reilly)

Web 2.0 companies are not being driven by a business or technology strategy, but by an **experience strategy**.

**The experience is the product.**

Any technological choices that do not reinforce the experience that we want the users to have of the product are the wrong decision.

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FOWA: Copy is Interface (Erika Hall) [en]

[fr] Notes prises à l'occasion de la conférence Future of Web Apps (FOWA) à Londres.

*Here are my live notes of this [Future of Web Apps (FOWA)]( session. They are probably incomplete and may contain mistakes, though I do my best to be accurate. Chances are I’ll be adding links to extra material and photos later on, so don’t hesitate to come back and check. [Read Suw’s notes, too.](*

FOWA 2007 131

Words are the most important components of your user interface.

Caveat: interface language found in the wild… American. So, not talking about internationalisation, different versions of languages, cultural issues…

Exciting interfaces: gesture thing Tom Cruise is using, Wii, iPhone… But not yet for data/information stuff.

You don’t know how people are going to access your application. Nabaztag. Applications people love today are made from text. Even interacting with our TV with a text-based interface.

Language is an interface.

Dopplr philosophy. Device independant. User benefits by having direct access to information. In our everyday life, our priority isn’t shiny stuff, but things that work. *steph-note: interpreting somewhat, here.*

How will the application developer benefit?

Though it takes a lot of skill to use language well, it’s easy to iterate. People will freak out when you change the colours of your site, but won’t budge much if you change language.

5 ways to get words right:

– **be authentic**; [consumating]( vs. [eharmony]( (Erika’s pet peeve: the “submit” button. If you change one piece of copy, change that. People don’t “submit” anything.) Twitter has good “we’re down” messages. Sounds like there are real people behind that application. *steph-note: when putting a quote on a slide, read the quote in full.*
– **be engaging**;, (“Hello gorgeous!”) Citybank: “Who was your arch rival when you were growing up?” as proposed security question. Pownce genders.
– **be specific** with the language you use.
– **be appropriate**: it would be disconcerning if my bank tried to be my buddy. Amazon: “where’s my stuff?” Flickr “Talk Like a Pirate” day. But… some people were afraid the site had been hacked!
– **be polite**: rude doesn’t get much forgiveness. Feedburner: “Activate Feed” and “Cancel and do not activate”, including type size to help you do what you want to do. “remarks”. adding “Everyone needs a hug” as default text in their comment box, when they were dealing with terrible flame wars.

Things that have gone wrong:

8 kinds of bad:

– **vague**: basecamp, “file *should* be under 10Mb”; Apple: “some warnings occured. would you like to review them?”; Bank: “expand your relationship” (creepy!) Ask real people how they would call this thing they want to do.
– **passive**
– **too clever/cute**; “Murder your darlings.” Be ready to kill your pet phrases.
– **don’t be rude** or stupid unhelpful.
– **oblivious to your surroundings**: CNN — “*Don’t miss*: Bodies trapped in wreckage.”
– **inconsistent**: the whole “my/your” inconsistency. Read your interface aloud to see if it sounds dumb.
– **don’t be presumptuous**

You will still need designers. We’re sociable and entertaining, shouldn’t lose those skills when developing our application. Language isn’t going away. It will pay to pay a lot of attention to it.

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BarCamp Lausanne: Facebook (Raphaël Briner) [fr]

70% des gens inscrits à [BarCamp Lausanne]( sont sur Facebook. 30 contacts (médiane). Idée intéressante: donner à Facebook un fichier texte avec des noms, et en retirer une liste des relations etc. entre ces gens.

BarCamp Lausanne 24

[Raphaël]( est sur Facebook depuis février 2007 (*steph-note: je vous mets une [saisie d’écran de son profil]( ;-)*), n’a pas fait grand chose en deux mois. Juillet/août: lancement des applications Facebook => pénétration++.

Audience européenne a triplé en 2 mois. 42’000 en Suisse. Tilllate a des soucis à se faire. (Si ça continue, FB aura 200’000 utilisateurs en Suisse à Noël — autant que Tilllate.)

Design graphique old school en L. 5 tailles de typo, minimal. [analyse détaillée du design de Facebook.] Petits détails soignés, tout de même, malgré un design super classique.

Développé en PHP. Marche relativement bien.

BarCamp Lausanne 29

Objects à usage social principalement. Applications: plate-forme géniale pour ça.

Par rapport à MySpace, possibilité de se différencier: pas de MP3 illégaux, d’images dont les droits ne sont pas respectés, de vidéos piratées — ou uniquement via des applications tierces.

Intérêt de Facebook: pour l’individu, générer du “bruit” diffusé à un public restreint. Evite les problèmes de droit de distribution.

*steph-note: intéressant comme présentation, bonne analyse du design (même si j’ai pas tout remis ici, ça me dépasse un peu j’avoue) — mais une analyse des enjeux sociaux est à mon avis à faire. Je me rends compte que j’ai des articles à écrire sur ce sujet en français.*

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Job Offer: Chief Architect, coComment [en]

[fr] On embauche chez coComment! Architecte en chef recherché.

I’ve dropped hints with a few people that there were exciting things to come within coComment. There is still much we cannot say, but here’s a fist tidbit (and not the least): we’re hiring.

We are looking for an individual with skills in product design, familiar with the blogging/commenting space from both a technical and user community perspective. Fluent in English and at least one other European language.

Your remit will be to work closely with the Marketing and Technology teams to formulate and lead the development of CoComment.

You will need to be flexbile, fast thinking, passionate about the blogging/commenting space and with the ability to take creative thought and turn it into deliverable product.

In return, CoComment offers a creative, supportive and fast-moving environment, the opportunity to join a rapidly growing company and equity incentives.

Please email matt at cocomment dot com with covering letter and CV, detailing current and expected remuneration.

As a personal note, I’d like to add that there are chances I’ll be reporting to the Chief Architect. It’s of course not yet 100% certain as there are many unknowns, but here I am, probably posting the ad for my future boss’s position…

*Crossposted on [coComment blog](*

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Large Footer Lust [en]

[fr] C'est décidé, je veux un large pied de page à remplir de widgets, comme ceux qu'on voit de plus en plus dans les thèmes WordPress.

It’s official. I want a large footer I can stuff full of [widgets](, like the one I see over at [Ordered List]( Anybody added one to [K2](

Getting good at short posts, ain’t I?

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Blog Design: Big Footers [en]

[fr] Je commence à voir l'intérêt des immenses pieds de pages que l'on voit sur certains blogs, et qui servent en fait de sidebar secondaire. Je me demande s'il existe une modification du thème K2 qui offre ça (widgets à la clé, bien sûr).

Just a note to say I’m starting to see the interest of big footers with “secondary content” stuffed into them. Look at [this slightly extreme example](

Are there any K2 mods around with big bad-ass widgetised footers?

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Radio sans moi et deux blogs à  visiter [fr]

[en] A radio show on blogs without me (I was busy teaching) and two Swiss politically oriented blogs worth visiting.

Très rapidement (mais alors très, parce que là , j’ai assez de boulot pour me garder occupée ces deux prochaines semaines même si je n’enseignais pas), notons [une émission sur la RSR1 ce matin](, qui portait sur les blogs.

On saluera deux faits:

– le sujet tournait plutôt autour du blog politique/blog d’entreprise, plutôt que l’éternel blog d’ado
– comme j’enseigne entre 9h00 et 9h30 le lundi matin, l’émission s’est faite sans moi 😉

On saluera aussi la personne responsable du site internet de la RSR1, à  qui l’on rappellera en passant que l’attribut id doit être unique sur une page. <DIV id=smallbold align=left> (sic) à  perte de vue sur la page, ça ne le fait vraiment pas. Ah oui, et j’ai remarqué (deux-trois autres personnes aussi) que le serveur ramait passablement. Une petite cure d’amaigrissement à  coups de [standards web]( “A balisage obsolète, article obsolète. Voyez le reste de pour plus d’actualité.”) serait peut-être à  conseiller.

Une mention cependant pour la possibilité de télécharger la chronique en MP3.

J’en profite pour vous envoyer vous balader sur deux sites romands “politisés” (prenez-en de la graine, vous autres, on en veut plus comme ça):

– [Une voix pour la Boillat](
– [L’Asile dans le canton de Vaud au jour le jour](

Mise à  jour 04.02.2006: merci à  [Flippy](, qui me dit les avoir eu via [Fredoche](, pour ces liens. Faites circuler!

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