When we started Open Usability in 2005, experienced usability/UX/interaction
experts were scarce.
Today, this is no longer
Back in 2005, software projects that took usability & UX serious were
extremely scarce (regardless of whether they were FOSS or
Today, this is also no longer the case.
And yet, we are disappointed with the percentage of software
that ships today with great usability & UX. Either experts and projects are
not collaborating enough, or their collaboration is ineffective.
We want to change this depressing situation and
want you to join us, by taking these actions—
Software projects of all countries, reach out and embrace
True, these experts see, think, talk and act
really differently than you, but that is the point: they bring what’s
dearly missing from your project. Don’t treat them as interlopers.
- Define + Collaborate
Projects and experts, start a collaboration only with a clear definition of how
significant, direct and immediate its impact will be on the next software
Projects, to make the collaboration
your processes will have to change. Experts, guide this transition, using all
The success of your collaboration is measured in results; all energy must be
focussed on shipping software with great usability & UX.
Projects must be able to fully trust their experts in matters usability &
UX; experts must be able to trust they are an effective link in the
Trust is earned through action taken.
- Make it last
It takes a long and deep collaboration to deliver the wide‐ranging and
deep goal that is great usability & UX. Projects and experts, build a
relationship that lasts for years.
Software projects, if you treat your
usability/UX/interaction experts as if they’re your most valuable
resource, they will respond by becoming your most valuable resource.
We salute you, Eric S. Raymond.
An open invitation
Beyond this, we are convinced that in the long run,
Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) can achieve better
usability & UX than software made in a closed/proprietary
We call on all usability/UX/interaction
experts to join us and further explore the open traits of FOSS;
to conceive new methods around them, to teach
research & design using FOSS project contexts and to make
optimal use of—
- the freedom to share and discuss innovation, ideas, concepts, designs and
mock‑ups—for public review and feedback—at any moment
- freely available daily/bleeding‐edge and beta software
releases, which are used in earnest by real users, for testing purposes;
- open, world‐wide and networked user communities, eager to provide
feedback and participate in research and co‑creation;
- the freedom to share—in‑depth—your project involvement;
your processes, methods and achievements, including the highly strategic parts.
All together now
Projects and experts, if you are looking to have a positive impact on
today’s software world, then check out our blueprint to
get started, today.