What are you reading?


#1

There’s an awful lot of recommended reading on the site: http://uxmastery.com/resources/books/

I wonder what books you’re reading, and what you can recommend?

Some books that I really liked (that aren’t on the list above from what I can see)
[LIST]
[]Universal Design for Web Applications (Wendy Chisholm & Matt May) - Dry title, but a really good book about accessibility.
[
]The User Experience Team of One (Leah Buley) - For small companies, or (like me) the people who only have ‘UX’ in their job title in their current workplace. Talks about methods to get others involved, and how best to use the various tools and methods.
[]Implementing Responsive Design (Tim Kadlec) - One of the best books I’ve read on the subject, goes into the challenges and problems we currently face.
[
]A Web For Everyone (Sarah Horton & Whitney Quesenbery) - Another good accessibility book, shows how you can introduce personas with varying degrees of ability to your process.
[]For The Win (Kevin Werbach & Dan Hunter) - For those interested in gamification.
[
]Evil By Design (Chris Nodder) - This is really interesting. It focuses on the sins of the web, the bad patterns that trick and manipulate. Not to use them of course, but to show how others use these patterns to get people to do things they may not want to do.
[]Content Everywhere (Sara Wachter-Boettcher) - A really indepth book on content strategy, goes a lot further than a lot of similar books on the subject.
[
]Remote (Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson) - Not really UX, but selling the ideas of working remote (something I’m a big fan of!)
[*]Simple and Usable (Giles Colborne) - Brilliant book about interaction design.
[/LIST]


What books should i buy at the beginning?
#2

Yeah they all look like great reads Dean.

I have Sunni Brown’s new book “The Doodle Revolution” by my bedside at the moment. Expect a review on the site in the coming weeks.

Incidentally, if anyone would like to write a review of any UX titles, we’d love to publish them on the site!

Matt


#3

When I was starting studying UX what to read was one of the most important questions for me, so I decided to get ride on it. I wrote an article with my own research of books on medium. Hope my research will help someone. Now I’am reading books with more specifications like typography or wireframing. Also I’d like to add that uxmastery.com’s advised books are very important anyone can start from there.


#4

My university studies predominantly looked at art and technology and one book that influenced me at that time was just updated last year - Brenda Laurel’s seminal “Computers as Theatre.”

This book isn’t really about tactics but lays a philosophical foundation for how we think about experience design.

  • tim

#5

Tangentially related, but I’m reading An Actor’s Way by [SIZE=12px]Konstantin Stanislavski. As it pertains to UX, it’s a great deep dive into empathy.[/SIZE]


#6

Thanks for that list of extra reading Dean and Armen - I’ll make some additions to the UX Mastery reading list.

As Matt will tell you, I’ve often got a massive pile of books on my desk I’m working my way through. At the moment the UX-ey ones I’m checking out:
[LIST]
[][I]Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions[/I] by Dan Ariely
[
][I]Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We think and Do[/I] by BJ Fogg
[][I]Year Million: Science at the Far End of Knowledge[/I] edited by Damien Broderick
[/LIST] And some revisiting of some classics:
[LIST]
[
]Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud
[]The Sketchnote Handbook by Mike
[
]The Hacker Ethic and the Spirit of the Information Age by Pekka Himanen
[/LIST] Incidentally, Mike Rohde did the illustrations in “Remote” (8th on your list, Dean) for the 37Signals team. He’ll be swinging by our next Ask The UXperts session to share some thoughts about sketching as part of the UX process.


#7

Ahhh, Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud is a good one.

Taking a look at my bookshelf, there’s a few titles that I’ve found helpful:

• Any of the Marty Neumeier “white paper” books (The Brand Gap, ZAG, and The Designful Company) are all fantastic. Very short reads, but not “light”.
• Information Architecture: Blueprints for the (2nd Edition) by Christina Wodtke and Austin Govella
• Designing with Web Standards by Jeffrey Zeldman
• Content Strategy for the Web by Christina Halverson
• Don’t Make Me Think by Steve Krug (latest edition just released at the end of 2013)
• About Face 3: Essentials of Interaction Design by Alan Cooper, Robert Reimann and David Cronin
• Sketching User Experiences by Bill Buxton
• Rework (also by the 37Signals guys)
• Undercover User Experience Design by Cennydd Bowles and James Box
• MTIV: Process, Inspiration and Practice for the New Media Designer by Hillman Curtis

Speaking of Zeldman, any of the books from the “A Book Apart” library, particularly:
• The Elements of Content Strategy by Erin Kissane
• Responsive Web Design by Ethan Marcotte (a bit more on the technicals, as are a few of the other books I left out here, but good RWD primer)
• Designing for Emotion by Aaron Walter
• MObile First by Luke Wroblewski
• Design is a Job by Mike Monteiro (HUGE fan of this one)
• Content Strategy for Mobile by Karen McGrane
• Just Enough Research by Erika Hall

Getting the entire Book Apart library is probably not a bad idea.


#8

Currently on my nightstand:
[LIST]
[]Killer UX Design - Jodie Module
[
]A Project Guide to UX Design - Russ Unger and Carolyn Chandler (the updated and revised version)
[]Undercover User Experience Design - Cennydd Bowles and James Box
[
]The User Experience Team of One - Leah Buley
[/LIST]

On the waiting list at the library (can’t wait to get my hands on these):
[LIST]
[]Show Your Work - Austin Kleon
[
]Lean UX - Jeff Gothelf
[/LIST]
I’ll have to look into The Sketchnote Handbook, as sketching is something I would like to improve upon. Also, I’m looking for books that address how to make sound design decisions when working on a project. Any recommendations are much appreciated! :slight_smile:


#9

I want to put you attention on a great list published by adaptivepath
It´s created by Brandon Schauer

Link: http://www.adaptivepath.com/ideas/a-…lly-gets-read/

I think it´s really different from the standard reading list. Already read some of those and will probably read more of them, good stuff!

[B]Fast & fun: A designer’s intro to strategy[/B]
Brand Gap and [URL=“http://www.amazon.com/Zag-Number-Strategy-High-Performance-Brands/dp/0321426770/ref=la_B001H6GP4Q_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1393352907&sr=1-2”]Zag, by Marty Neumeier
These are the oldest books on the list, but oh-so-useful still. I refer to these two books as “gateway books” for designers who are curious about strategy. Both are fast and compelling reads and they get you thinking about strategic business questions that design can have an impact on. Zag, specifically, nails competitive differentiation and Purple Cow by Seth Godin is a good deeper read on the same subject from a marketer’s point-of-view.

[B]Fast & light: Customer-centric strategy[/B]
What Do You Want Your Customers to Become?, Michael Schrage
It’s not enough to simply satisfy a customer need. The really important brands will ask themselves, “What will we help our customers become?” Answer it right and you create something great for customers and great for your business. This is one of my favorite framings for customer-centric business strategy. This e-book is a very fast read.

[B]Fast & fun: A first step in customer-centric service design[/B]
Adaptive Path’s Guide to Experience Mapping
Yup, I’m biased, but this is a great simple read on why and how to understand the end-to-end customer experience and start benefiting from seeing this view of your business. It’s a free download and super-fast read.

[B]Useful tools: How humans tick[/B]
The new Behavior Change Strategy Cards by Artefact Group outline numerous concepts of how to design for how humans are wired. They did a great job of capturing a couple of my favorites. Or if you want to go deeper on this topic, I’d check out [URL=“http://www.amazon.com/Nudge-Improving-Decisions-Health-Happiness/dp/014311526X”]Nudge by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein.

[B]Fun & browsable: Great references for designers[/B]
101 Design Methods by Vijay Kumar and [URL=“http://www.amazon.com/The-User-Experience-Team-One/dp/1933820187”]UX Team of One by Leah Buley
Two of my favorite folks published these books in the last year, both of which will be great reference books for me. Vijay’s is a toolkit of a wide array of design methods along with the thinking of how to know when to use which. Leah’s is the toolkit and thinking to make User Experience a force within any organization.

[B]A browsable primer: So just how do you practice UX, design thinking, and innovation?[/B]
Getting to Thank You, Chris Finley
An upcoming self-published release from Chris Finley of United Health, this book will become a favorite recommendation of mine for anyone trying to piece together the worlds of user experience, design thinking, and innovation. Chris removes some of the voodoo mystery and breaks down a wide set of concepts from these worlds into clear examples and practical practices, all with the intent of having customers say, “thank you.”

[B]A great story: Innovation as a disciplined business practice[/B]
Brick by Brick, by David Robertson
This is a case study of the LEGO Group, focused most strongly on a all-in focus on innovation that almost sunk the company in 2003. LEGO pursued all the essential so-called “truths of innovation,” from disruption to wisdom-of-crowds to investment in an innovative culture. They did it all, but the result was that everything was NOT awesome at LEGO. They didn’t practice innovation with discipline, which is the central truth of this book: to run a good business [or unit, or group, or team], you have to be disciplined. If you like LEGO even just a bit, this is a detailed but easy read.

[B]A browsable primer: Innovation as a disciplined business practice[/B]
Ten Types of Innovation, by Larry Keeley, Helen Walters, Ryan Pikkel, and Brian Quinn
A good pairing with Brick by Brick, this toolkit covers methods and cases of innovation far wider than just “design thinking” and lots of sticky notes. It’s a good reminder that there are many types of breakthroughs, and it’s not always and certainly not solely about the experience.

[B]Fun & browsable: How to get the word out[/B]
Communicating the New, by Kim Erwin
Yea. You’ve got insights or solutions, but you’ve got to share them in a powerful way so that the organization can understand and act on them. It’s time someone focused exclusively on this matter, and Kim Erwin’s put together a great set of lessons.

[B]Practical & digestible: Get beyond the hype of Lean[/B]
Lean UX by Jeff Gothelf and Josh Seiden
Lean Startup and Lean UX have and will continue to be on the rise. It’s a compelling idea to more quickly and confidently get to the right customer-focused solution. (And, I wish I had a quarter for every time I’ve heard “MVP” uttered in the past 24 months.) This is probably the most dense read in this set, but this is a very solid introduction to the subject, and just like the “truths of innovation” covered in Brick by Brick, Lean is an approach you need to understand well enough to practice it with discipline.


#10

Another Great List of good UX Books: [h=1]A Booklist to Help You Become Great at User Experience Design[/h] November 18, 2013 · by Christina · in [URL=“http://www.eleganthack.com/category/design/”]Design, [URL=“http://www.eleganthack.com/category/words/”]Words
Now let me preface this by saying I chose my words carefully… book, one, great. And people responded with a lot of different ideas on what path leads you to get great at user experience design. Some went broad, choosing books that cover it all, others went deep and inspirational. Still others went sideways. And more than a few suggested books wasn’t the way to go at all.
It’s a fun read.
http://www.eleganthack.com/a-ux-booklist-for-becoming-great/

Hope you like it :slight_smile:


#11

I’m late to the UX book reading showcase and I have a large collection of UX books, but the last one that I got is “Inventing the Medium - Principles of Interaction Design as a Cultural Practice” by Janet Murray published by MIT Press. Even though this book was published in 2012, it has interesting views about how we go about creating digital products and environments as a unified culture of digital creators where design patterns follow a collective type of engagement in our digital culture. It is interesting that as our connections are strengthen globally among practitioners, our design processes and philosophies become also very similar. We are all learning from each other and growing our disciple and expanding it to levels that allow for greater future innovation.


#12

This one is my new best friend:

[SIZE=12px]Universal Methods of Design: 100 Ways to Research Complex Problems, Develop Innovative Ideas, and Design Effective Solutions[/SIZE] by Bruce Hanington and Bella Martin.

Affectionately known as “The Purple Book” in my office, it has been an amazing resource of evaluation and testing techniques. It’s a really handy one to have close by at work, it has 100 different techniques to try.


#13

I passed by an list of free design ebooks I want to share with you: http://www.creativebloq.com/design/free-ebooks-designers-7133700 ----------------- " Whether you’re just starting out in design, or you’re a seasoned pro, the web has some interesting reading for you today. We’ve done some extensive research and found these brilliant free ebooks for you to download and read – but let us know in the comments if you’ve come across a good book we’ve missed! There has always been a healthy market for commercial books written by experts, and this isn’t likely to change any time soon: sometimes there’s just no substitute for splashing your cash and getting high quality content in return. That said, there’s a growing movement towards free and freemium content on the web, and the quality of the content is often on a par with the books you’d part cash for." ------------


#14

one more great list - must reads for UX designers:
http://www.onextrapixel.com/2014/09/10/15-must-read-guides-for-ux-professionals-written-or-praised-by-industry-leaders/ [h=3]----[/h] The [B]field of UX[/B] is daunting without the right guidance. So many subjective questions pop up on a daily basis. How do we provide access to secondary navigation without cluttering the interface? What UI patterns are the most intuitive? How do we fulfill the [URL=“http://www.onextrapixel.com/2010/10/04/user-experience-using-empathy-to-empower-your-users/”]logical and emotional needs of users? Answer one of them, and five more will inevitably pop up to take their place.
But by browsing the existing body of knowledge — along with practice, practice, practice — you can shorten the journey to becoming an expert. You don’t need to go it alone since there’s plenty of insights from professionals who’ve been there and done it. Check out these free and paid resources covering topics ranging from best practices of today’s hottest companies to the more theoretical realm of cognitive psychology and design minimalism.



#15

This isn’t a UX book, but a product management book: What Customers Want, by Ulwick. It’s helping me understand how to build our UX-measurement product.


#16

I’m reading “Standards for Online Communication”, by JoAnn T. Hackos and Dawn M. Stevens. I’m trying to get as much information as I can about the field before I’m ready to enter.


#17

Call me crazy, but I’m working my through About Face 4th edition by Cooper.


#18

I’m reading “Dust” by Hugh Howey. It’s the third in a sci-fi trilogy. I’m busy so it’s taking longer than it should! It’s a great series though.


#19

[LIST]
[]Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud
[
]“Choose Yourself” by James Altucher (one of the best business books of all time, they said, so I am reading it :wink:
[]The 7 habits of highly effective people
[
]How Successful People Think , a classic…
[/LIST]


#20

Some great ideas in this list!

I’m reading or just finished some philosophy books…

So Good They Can’t Ignore You (Cal Newport)
Ego is the Enemy (Ryan Holiday)
Letters from a Stoic (Lucius Seneca)
Man’s Search for Meaning (Victor Frankl
Whatever You Want (Derek Sivers)
How to Beat Up Anybody (Judah Friedlander)

I guess I’m not reading anything directly related to UX or design. Could that be a sign, is the universe telling me something?!?