Qantas and Air New Zealand could greatly improve their online booking process when it comes to children who need to fly unaccompanied. There’s many reasons why children need to fly … MoreHelping Airlines Cope with Children
Qantas have a ‘thick’ online booking system. This came to light when I read an article in The Dominion Post this morning, which reads: A mother says she will never … MoreMake Qantas Smarter (and win!)
It has been interesting watching Chandima in action at Provoke since I lured him away from Synergy Fronde (or “Fondle” as some of us affectionately refer to them around here). … MoreFree, free – set them free…
Many of you would have already heard of the threats against popular software industry blogger Kathy Sierra. That is the question…I briefly met Kathy when I organised a UPANZ event … Moreputting yourself out there
After a slow start to the year, the Wellington Usability Professionals group has an exciting series of events planned for 2007! To kick things off, their next meeting is Tuesday … Moreprototyping tools for web design
ponoko My ex work colleague Dave ten Have is making his dream real with new venture Ponoko. Ponoko allows designers to have their own workshop and factory to create products…as … MoreGood vs Evil
Provoke has some exciting projects on the horizon and I’m keen to hear from (or about) any fantabulous e-commerce gurus out there (freelancers or full-timers). You might be the sort of person who could lead the research, strategy, requirements and information architecture of a large e-commerce and dynamic data-driven web site.
… MoreSeeking User Experience Strategic Guru (E-Commerce)
The new few months are going to be busy in Wellington when it comes to conferences and presentations.
This time I’m involved in a few myself…
They’re ripping up the footpath along the Queens Highway on the Kapiti Coast – then laying it down again in pretty much the same place.
… MoreNarrow Thinking
In my search for a fuel-efficient car I was amazed to learn that in New Zealand you can buy a Prius for around $5000.
… MoreSitting on a Hybridised Bomb?
Stuff reports a ‘big financial hit’ for Stagecoach due to staff not understanding their new software.
… MoreHiccups ruin commuter’s lives…
A few weeks ago I ‘treated’ my daughter to her first big train trip – on the Overlander – in what proved to be a scenic experiment in illusion and culinary depravation.
… MoreStarving on the main-trunk line
In an act of hypocrisy I’m abandoning electric rail in favour of a fossil-guzzling car. This was not a light decision, but the Kapiti-Wellington public transport system has literally driven … MoreI’m going off the rails
For two weeks my fiance Sarah had survived without her purse. It contained her cash-card, VISA, drivers license, library card, sewing gear, lipstick (and all those mysterious things women lug … MorePsychic Customer Service
Meme tagging… Hey – I am ‘it’ and maybe you are next… hold your breath.. Chan has done the damage by tagging me to the ever evolving internet meme. So … MoreIt’s all about me me me…
Are we throwing ourselves blindly into a yawning flat paradigm with the Apple iPhone? Let us consider a world without pressing your (or someone else’s) buttons… First of all, try … MoreiFlat Earth
PERSONA QUAKE! Following my ‘Bring Your Personas to Life’ article on Boxes and Arrows (and more recently, this blog) I’ve attracted a lot of criticism and some praise. I don’t … MorePersonas Banking Elves & Why Technology Does Not Matter
Most UCD (user centred design) companies now create personas – profiles of representative users – to guide their designs. After all, to do UCD you need to get the ‘U’ … MoreBring Your Personas to Life!
In New Zealand the demand for Information Architects, Interaction Designers, Web Designers and Usability Consultants is hotter than global warming. It’s so hot that the local industry is possibly nearing … MoreUX Industry Goes Loco
When you see the latest jaw-dropping feature from Flickr, 37signals, ZoomIn, TradeMe or [your favourite website], do you think, “how on earth did they do that”? Do you then dig … MoreI’m Hiring (Again…)
Last year I designed a prototype of an advanced search system for Student Job Search (SJS). I’d taken inspiration from the iTunes ‘smart playlist’ feature and created an ultra flexible … MoreFiltering Out Advanced Search
The new version of the New Zealand Government Web Guidelines is out for consultation – get in quick as consultations close on 31 October 2006. The whopping 132-pages of Guidelines … MoreNew Govt Web Guidelines
I’m almost back home from my workshop and conference run – GOVIS, OZ-IA and this weekend PKS2006… OZ-IA in Sydney was kinda interesting, but in my experience it didn’t match … MoreI Aye?
Well, strictly speaking, Provoke is hiring… I’ve now been working as the Director of Design & User Experience at Provoke for just under two years – in that time my … MoreI’m Hiring
It’s one of those strange things about my world – every time I criticise a company or Government department the next day they’re nominated for an award (or even actually … MoreBankDirect vs Kiwibank
TranzMetro, Wellington’s commuter train service, has undergone several partial make-overs in recent years and the railyards are a living case-study of a confused or fragmented branding department. But, in the … MoreTranzMetro Goes Web2.0
In New Zealand a battle of words is raging over a new ‘Buy Kiwi-Made’ campaign. The Greens (who lead the campaign) say that ‘New Zealand manufacturers and workers can be … MoreBuy Kiwi-Designed
For the last six weeks I’ve been working as an undercover agent – posing as a new customer for Kiwibank – New Zealand’s big little bank. Secret Spy Profile Having … MoreKiwibank’s Secret Formula?
Glimpses of zef[a]media between 1995 and 1999 – courtesy of the Wayback Machine… [Note: Wayback Machine isn’t perfect, some links and images are missing]. 1995 I’ve been scouring the archives … MoreWhen the Web Was Young
My latest piece of writing – ‘Method Acting with Personas’ – appears over on Boxes and Arrows It’s a suggestion for publication and your interest might help get it to … MoreGet the Method with Boxes and Arrows
This article originally appeared on Digitalmelon, and is re-blogged here with the kind permission of Chandima Kulathilake. Chan has been recently evaluating new Microsoft technologies for User Interface Design – … MoreMicrosoft Bridging the Gap Between Developers, Designers and the User Experience
My Fabulous Career Recently I pitched for a website I was born to create. I knew it would be an uphill battle – all our perceived flaws were laid bare, … MorePassionate People I’ve Worked With
Dealing in software design I often work with budgets worth many more times than my car (and sometimes as large as my 25-year mortgage). And because I often work in … MoreGold-plated Paper
A few months ago I kicked up a fuss about the usability and interaction design of the first New Zealand Online Census. Just having completed my own design projects for … MoreStatisfaction
In an exclusive scoop, Zef brings you the original lyrics from Bob’s legendary Webstock performance on May 25. Those who were lucky enough to be present at Webstock may notice … MoreBob’s Webstock Lyrics Uncovered!
As the designers of user interfaces we have an obligation to not only our clients, but our users and their greater working environment. In practical terms, Triple Bottom Line Usertarianism … MoreTriple Bottom Line Usertarianism
Well – Webstock was a blast. Here’s snippets from my seven days of coffee and haze… Sunday (PM) I join the Provoke crew to wine and dine the phenomenally busy … MoreTaking Stock…
Webstock is the biggest thing to hit the Wellington web industry since Trade Me sold for $700m in cash – the difference is that, this time, almost everyone gets to … MoreIt’s K-Time!
Google Trends is the new hot topic – but apart the fun it gives you (by comparing search terms), in most cases the information it spits out is quite useless. … MoreGoogle Trends is Misery
As the President of the Usability Professionals’ Association of New Zealand (you can just call me ‘Mr President’), I\’m charged with supporting and growing “usability” in this country. Well, things … More“I aint got no use-a-bill-latty”
I’m sick to death of screens containing multiple submit buttons and in recent years I’ve been culling submit buttons from any web application I can lay my hands on. Most … MoreTo submit, submit or submit?
Soon after I relaunched my blog in January 2006 my subscriber base shot up from about a dozen regular readers to over 300 – and now fluctuates wildly between 150 … MoreUsability is Bad for the Environment
What will New Zealand look like in 20 years if we don’t have fresh Water, are still dependant on Oil and human-induced Climate? A sea-level rise of 5m will make … More‘Absolute Beachfront’ by 2050
Old fossil Web1.0 technologies (such as pop-ups) continue to pollute our browsing environment and are hampering progressive and sustainable navigation. So, in one of my previous blogs I declared “War … MoreEnvironmentally Friendlier Pop-ups
Recent success stories from the Provoke coal face (where I manage a small team of interaction designers)… The National Bank of New Zealand’s new plastic fantastic personalised photo cards have … MoreMeantime, in my day job…
Pop-up creators are polluting our fragile web eco-system – they must look to alternatives. Now pop-ups are infiltrating people’s homes and messing-up the web eco-system.You might not realise it, but … MoreWar on Pop-Up Pollution!
The online census attracted less than half the expected number the Dominion Post reported yesterday. Less than half the expected number of people filled out the new Online Census.The paper … MoreOnline Census Flopped?
Peter, a retired engineer who lives in Waitati (near Dunedin), says he has designed a prototype system which will convert household organic waste into biodiesel fuel. His contraption links up … MoreEco Entrepreneurs
Ever had a brilliant idea that could potentially ‘spice-up’ a business, the world wide web, or the planet? Like many creative people my great ideas often stay “just ideas”. They … MoreJust “waiting for the real thing?”
In my blog a few days ago (about the poor design and usability of the New Zealand online Census), drew bundles of feedback and criticism from various quarters. Comments I … MoreA Cultivated Census
The online version of the New Zealand 2006 Census is littered with unnecessary design and usability issues. For the first time New Zealand citizens have the option of doing the … MoreHolding the Online Census to Account
My blog a few weeks ago (‘I want my bioethanol now’) sparked a number of responses from my readers (and since then I’ve also gained over 100 new subscribers!) Helen … MoreHelen Gets a Little Bit Bold(er)
According to at least one New Zealander we’re well on the way to sharing a similar fate as the 14th century Easter (or ‘Rapanui’) Islanders. This morning Linda Clark was … MoreAnesthetising Our Way of Life
Another little bit of Wellington history was given a ‘big brush over’ earlier this month. It was a row of old shop-front signs on the corner of Cuba and Ghuznee … MorePainting Over History
While New Zealand seems stuck in some sort of laxy dazy sloth warp, Iceland plans to become the first country to replace fossil fuels with hydrogen for all its energy … MoreI Want My Bioethanol Now!
Every weekday I see dozens of people tempting fate on one of New Zealand’s most deadly stretches of highway. TXT driving on the Kapiti CoastThankfully I’m sitting safely on the … MoreKooks on Killer Highway
For christmas my eldest daughter was given a Knex construction kit – and a few hours later Ferris was born. Ferris is pretty simple, but inquisitive – its main function … More…but will it fold the washing?
Here’s proof that usability can make you look a little bit silly. My work colleague is in love with these new mega-chunky Phillips headphones, which he bought half price for … MoreMan Goes Silly Over Usability
Last Wednesday I was setting up a usability test environment for a new website. Somebody commented on the computer monitor – “It’s fuzzy” – and proceeded to try and adjust … MoreKing Kong of Usability Stuff Ups
The Student Job Search website has been relaunched, but at first glance you wouldn’t notice much of a difference… While the visual design has largely remained untouched – most of … MoreStudents Treated to Defensive Design
Zoomin is a New Zealand dynamic street map site, where you can zoom, pan and navigate around the map in real time. Sound Googlesk? Well, it is, but better. What … MoreZoomIn BloomIn Brilliant
I’m probably a tad younger than the core Radio New Zealand demographic, but in recent years it has become my station of choice – thanks in part to my fabulous … MoreRadio NZ Rocks Online
Just when I thought the web was actually going through a revival with usability, web standards, AJAX taking hold – and New Zealanders actually starting to churn out some pretty … MoreTV3 Website Gives Me Nightmares
Great news for Kiwi design – appliance maker Fisher & Paykel Appliances has joined the ranks of global brands like Bose, Playstation, Stella Artois, Blackberry, Audi and Chanel – based … MoreFlashy Breakable Fisher & Paykel
An article in the Sunday Star Times (‘Insincerely yours’, Oct 9 2005) claims that New Zealand companies “are robbing their customers, robbing their staff, and robbing themselves with an insincere … MoreInsincerity Sucks
A hand drier has just been installed at the Provoke toilets, and it’s creating chaos… …all because of a string of simple usability issues. The source of the issue (arguably) … MoreHurricane Rentokil
Are you paying too much when buying goods on Trade Me? All it takes to find out is a couple of Googles. Last July our juicer became redundant. That is, … MoreDown Traden
My customer experience today at a ‘Theme Basics Store’ in Wellington… [ZEF] Hi, do you sell shower curtains? [TBS SHOP ASSISTANT] Yes – over there… (points) [ZEF] (looks over) They … MoreThematics
It was my first exploration into the brave new world of ordering photo-prints online. I thought the experience would be simple… Visit a website Upload a bunch of photos I … MoreFoto Blotto
While travelling from Ohakune to Paraparaumu the other day I became obsessed with the plethora of political party billboards lining the highway. To the point…The National Party takes the cake … MoreBlind Greens
The Trade Me ‘change my region’ feature assumes New Zealanders are hermits – never leaving the comfort of their internet device, home, street or town. I live and work in … MoreTrade Me Your Region
When it comes to building software many New Zealand companies unnecessarily struggle with design and development issues. Much of this is due to software specifications without adequate pictures. Below is … MoreSoftware Specifications With Vision
More time for usability now development tools are more efficient An interview with Zef Fugaz by Stephen Bell, Computerworld (November 2004) If New Zealand developers are to increase exports of … MoreNZ Firms Need to Catch Up with Overseas
Astute web designers do more than just design with your customers in mind- they actually design with your customers- in person. Zef Fugaz looks at ways to get your users … MoreDesigning for Loyalty
Achieving e-Government compliance for public sector websites will require a makeover that’s greater than skin-deep. Zef Fugaz looks at the realities of putting public service websites on the operating table … MoreKissing the Lips of E-govt
Your next Guru could be a usability practitioner. It was only a few years ago that the term “usability” was widely categorised as a misspelling or another lunatic fringe concept … MoreRise of the Usability Guru