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Metric: a UX Podcast

Michael Schofield

Metric is a #libux podcast about design and user experience - not-specifically but often about libraries and the higher-ed web. Guests join award-winning hosts Michael and Amanda to talk shop. We're super chatty, highly expert :).


Writing for the User Experience with Rebecca Blakiston - A LibUX Webinar
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 01:38
Writing for the User Experience with Rebecca Blakiston - A LibUX Webinar

Join Rebecca Blakiston -- author of books on on usability testing and writing with clarity; Library Journal mover and shaker -- as she talks shop and makes the case for content strategy, using active and authentic voice, removing unnecessary words, writing meaningful titles/headings, using parallelism, and more.

Our volunteer expert

Rebecca Blakiston (@blakistonr) is the team lead for Web Design & User Experience at the University of Arizona Libraries. She is the author of two books: Usability Testing: a Practical Guide for Librarians, and Writing Effectively in Print and on the Web: a Practical Guide for Librarians. She's also the Chair of the University Libraries Section, Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL ULS). In 2016, she was named a Library Journal Mover and Shaker.

She's super. We've had beers.


On design in user stories and user experience departments
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 20:46
On design in user stories and user experience departments

One more over coffee edition of Metric before a string of interviews to round-out the month of April. In this episode: 

  • What role does photoshop play in UX?
  • Should "design" be part of a user story?
  • What are the necessary technical abilities for doing UX?
  • What are your thoughts on UX Departments

Over Coffee: Ugh, UX Ph.D's
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 25:52
Over Coffee: Ugh, UX Ph.D's

This episode of Metric is a little special: no guests, no post, just loaded questions and loaded answers. In the actual recording I was thinking about calling it "coffee break," but I over-thought this and now feel like that suggests it's a super short episode. It's not. It's regular length. So, we're going with "over coffee" -- which it was! 

This episode, I tackle three questions about UX Certification, a UX Ph.D who sucks at visual design, and Guerrilla Usability Testing. 


Andy Priestner
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 29:18
Andy Priestner

Andy Priestner is a global trainer and consultant on user experience, leadership, social media, and LEGO Serious Play. He's the originator and chair of UXLibs, among many things a best-in-show UX conference, as well as the title of the book he edited with Matt Borg.  

In this episode, we were able to wrangle our timezones and chat about the upcoming conference, as well as Futurelib -- an open innovation program exploring the future role of academic libraries within the University of Cambridge through ethnographic studies -- and, really, what prompted Andy to resign.

  • 4:00 - About the "team challenge" at UXLibs, plus shout-outs to Ned Potter, Matt Borg, and Donna Lanclos.
  • 9:04 - The state of user experience design in these institutions
  • 11:55 - What happened with Futurelib
  • 18:02 - Andy on leaving his job and going freelance
  • 20:48 - The Tracker Project: eye-tracking people in libraries with glasses 

Personas, Jobs to be Done - oh, and LITA
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 18:07
Personas, Jobs to be Done - oh, and LITA

Recently, LITA embarked on a big persona-making project in order to better align their services to the needs of their members, the results of which they just revealed. This provides a solid talking point to introduce conceptual problems with personas and introduce a potentially better-suited approach: jobs to be done. 

  • 00:43 - LITA created a bunch of personas
  • 2:14 - What does LITA actually want?
  • 3:39 - Personas are more noise than signal
  • 5:37 - Personas are best as a demographic snapshot
  • 6:05 - The User Story
  • 7:35 - The Job Story
  • 8:04 - Jobs to be Done
  • 11:36 - So what jobs do LITA personas need done?
  • 14:04 - What should LITA do, then?
  • 15:44 - Support Metric:
  • 16:42 - How to enter for our giveaway: a copy of Practical Design Discovery by Dan Brown.

Twitter: @metricpodcast

Facebook: LibUX

Join us on Slack: 

The Accessibility Tree
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 28:52
The Accessibility Tree

If you thought your grip on web accessibility couldn't get any looser, let's talk about the Accessibility Tree. This is a hostful episode Amanda and Michael. 

Trey Gordner and Stephen Bateman from Koios
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 23:07
Trey Gordner and Stephen Bateman from Koios

This week on Metric we are joined by Trey Gordner and Stephen Batemen from Koios, who are designing services that amplify the discoverability and searchability of libraries with real emphasis on the end-user experience. We chat about startup opportunities in this space, the opportunity and danger of "interface aggregation," the design of their new service Libre (, and more. 

These two were super fun to interview. 

  • Koios:
  • Libre:
  • Trey Gordner is @darthgordner
  • Stephen Batemen is @IAmBateman
  • Amanda L. Goodman is @godaisies
  • Michael Schofield is @schoeyfield
  • Metric is @metricpodcast 

Support Metric on Patreon for early access, new pilot podcasts, "swraffle" entries, and more. 

February's Swag-raffle ("swraffle") for Tesla Amazing Magnetic Notes is still on! Patreon supporters at the $2+ level are automatically entered, but you can also earn an entry by honestly reviewing Metric in your podcatcher of choice and shooting @metricpodcast a screenshot. Thanks!

Your front end is doomed
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:08
Your front end is doomed

Metric alum Emily King swings by again to chat about conversational UIs and "interface aggregation" -- front ends other than yours using metadata and API to connect with your site, so that users don't actually have to visit your site directly. 

Please rate and share! These little gestures go a long way. 

You can reach out to Emily at @emilykingatcsn on Twitter, I am @schoeyfield, and Metric is @metricpodcast. 

LITA Persona Task Force
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 07:49
LITA Persona Task Force

This week Amanda L. Goodman (@godaisies) gives you a peek into the work  of the LITA Persona Task Force, who are charged with defining and developing personas that are to be used in growing membership in the Library and Information Technology Association.

We — LibUX — are producing our first ever free webinar this Thursday, February 16th, at 1 pm with Metric alum Tim Broadwater, a UI designer and certified UX developer that has worked for Fortune 500 companies, grant-based education initiatives, and higher-ed. It’s called UX Quackery, which will focus on the prevailing dishonest practices that exist in the field of UX, and what we can do to weed-out the quacls. Toootally free and I think it will be really special. Check it out at

When Native Apps are Unethical
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 28:29
When Native Apps are Unethical

This episode of Metric is very much a companion to last week’s post on consciously infusing the ethics of the organization into design decisions.

There is an opportunity for institutions that are positioned — either actively or by reputation — as intellectual and moral community cores (libraries) to exert greater if not just more obvious influence on the filters through which patrons access content.Critical Librarianship in the Design of Libraries

It’s been an upward battle for accessibility wresting a seat at the design table even though it’s core to the user experience. It’s now time to pull-up a chair for ethical considerations.

It’s been almost three years since I amended the UX Honeycomb with “ethical”. Notes

The ethics of good design: a principle for the connected age by Aaron Weyenberg

Good design is ethical. The product places the user’s interest at the center of its purpose. Any effort to influence the user’s agency or behavior is in the spirit of their own positive wellbeing, and the wellbeing of those around them.Aaron Weyenberg

Listen and subscribe

If you like, you can download the MP3 or subscribe to LibUX on StitcheriTunes, YouTube, Soundcloud, Google Music, or just plug our feed straight into your podcatcher of choice.

The Nintendo Switch
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 37:48
The Nintendo Switch

Even if you’re not much of a gamer, the modular design of the Nintendo Switch is super compelling. What you see in its reveal is an experience that moves not just between your living room screen and your backpack, but one that adapts to different social contexts.

Its controllers — joycons — peal off, can attach to a more conventional lean-back controller, or pop-on to the sides of the screen when you leave the house, or divvied-up between friends for — you know — some roof co-op (watch the video, really). What’s more, there’s a really good likelihood that joycons might be able to be switched out for alternate designs.

Nintendo’s really selling the experience here.

In this episode Chad Haefele, Tim Broadwater, and I totally conjecture about the user experience of the Switch and the nostalgia market.


Remediation is the process through which the characteristics and approaches of competing media are imitated, altered, and critiqued in a new medium… (or) the representation of one medium in another.Meredith Davis

Tim Broadwater’s Remediation Toolkit Tim Broadwater’s Interaction Model Artifacts Chad Haefele and Brandon Carper’s podcast about the intersection of video games, user experience, and instructional design: Gamification Unlocked

Links Should Open in the Same Window [Redux]
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 11:48
Links Should Open in the Same Window [Redux]

Hey there. Michael Schofield here - thank you so much for tuning in to another Metric - a pretty good podcast about design and the user experience. 

This episode is a redux! I just recently updated the most popular post I’ve ever written called “Links Should Open in the Same Window” - because they should, you savages.

I’m going to read it to ya. I’m proud of it.

And hey, would you mind rating us in iTunes? It’s a pretty good show. And if you think so, we could use your help to bring Metric to the attention of some new ears! That would be super kind of you.


The Election as a Design Problem
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 30:02
The Election as a Design Problem

Can we talk about the voting process as a user experience problem?

Our — the LibUX — approach to the user experience is that UX is a metric, a plottable, predictable, and improvable measurement of the end-user’s cumulative experience of your service. And we care because we have seen that actively investing in a good user experience has positive returns on the measurements your business or organization cares about. Is it foot traffic, is it database usage, is it income.

So, if we can apply this to civic participation, where we want people to vote — that’s the number we care about, voter turnout — can we then approach the challenge of improving this number by improving the user experience of voting?


This episode is brought to you by Snag a free audiobook -- these things can be like 30 bucks! -- and a free, no-strings 30-day trial of Audible. It's an awesome service and it supports the show. We would really, really apreciate it. 

On Burnout
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 35:55
On Burnout

On this episode of Metric, a podcast about design and user experience, guests Camille Thomas, Charles Villard, and Tim Broadwater join panel-up with Michael to kvetch and commiserate about burnout - oy.

The Coffinettes
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 21:20
The Coffinettes

Each Halloween I get a little nostalgic for the best Halloweens I had ever had back when I was a punk rocker. Join me -- your pal, Michael Schofield -- in this special Halloween episode where I reminisce a little bittersweetly and dig-up old recordings of my band - The Coffinettes.

A Thorough-as-hell Intro to the Kano Model
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 21:07
A Thorough-as-hell Intro to the Kano Model

The Kano Model is a tool for visualizing the relationship among features in a meaningful way. It's awesome. You'll need to use your imagination a bit, but stick with it: it's -- and I totally mean this -- the most useful UX method ever. <3 

Find show notes at

Library Usage and Trends
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:07
Library Usage and Trends

In this episode I'm joined by not one but two (!) guests. Carli Spina (@carlispina) and Emily King (@emilykingatcsn) come on the show to talk about the 2016 Library Usage and Trends Report published earlier this month by the Pew Research Center. 

Carousels Are Okay
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 11:50
Carousels Are Okay

What's up! Let's make some enemies and defend the use of carousels on behalf of actually good user experiences - maybe. Thank you for your kind reviews! Your brief reviews wherever you listen to LibUX make it easier to discover it.

Mark Dodgson Talks about Bluespark's Awesome Process
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 23:06
Mark Dodgson Talks about Bluespark's Awesome Process

The very cool Mark Dodsgon from Bluespark joins me for this week's episode! Bluespark is the team behind many a library website, including Indiana University Libraries, which I wrote about recently. I pretty much just let him talk about Bluespark's design process, which is super interesting. 

Crafting Websites with Design Triggers (Repeat)
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 32:42
Crafting Websites with Design Triggers (Repeat)

Hey, listeners! This week's episode is an oldie but a goodie. I used all my available storage on libsyn for August being so on point with this weekly show, that I can't upload anything new until the first full week of September. So, from the archives, I present to you one of my favorite topics: design triggers.

A design trigger is a pattern meant to appeal to behavior and cognitive biases observed in users. Big data and the user experience boom has provided a lot of information about how people actually use the web, which designs work, and–although creepy–how it is possible to cobble together an effective site designed to social engineer users.

Please rate, review, and share to help other designers find LibUX. 

Library Service Design with Joe Marquez
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 48:12
Library Service Design with Joe Marquez


In their January design trends episode, Michael and Amanda guessed that this year would begin the library service design zeitgeist wherein seven months later ALA published Library Service Design, written by Joe Marquez and Annie Downey. #CalledIt. In this episode of the podcast, Joe and Michael talk about service design, the role of the UX designer, organizational inertia and inherited ecology, blueprinting, and a lot more. 

Please like, subscribe, and review. We appreciate it! 

Circulating Ideas #99 - Cecily Walker
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:50
Circulating Ideas #99 - Cecily Walker

Circulating Ideas' host Steve Thomas generously allowed us to share the audio! We were stoked to guest-host. 

Guest hosts Michael Schofield and Amanda L. Goodman from LibUX chat with Cecily Walker from Vancouver Public Library. 

Cecily Walker is a librarian at Vancouver Public Library, where she focuses on user experience, community digital projects, digital collections, and the intersection of social justice, technology, and public librarianship. It was her frustration with the way that software was designed to meet the needs of highly technical users rather than the general public that led her to user experience, but it was her love of information, intellectual freedom, and commitment to social justice that led her back to librarianship. Cecily can be found on Twitter (@skeskali) where she frequently holds court on any number of subjects, but especially lipstick.

Michael Schofield and Amanda L. Goodman host the LibUX podcast.


This Vancouver“UX, consideration, and a CMMI-based model” [Coral Sheldon-Hess] “Mindspring’s 14 Deadly Sins”Cecily on Twitter

042 - Answer to the Ultimate Question
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 39:29
042 - Answer to the Ultimate Question

As the summer winds down, Amanda and Michael reunite to get cracking on the Fall schedule of all things Team LibUX - but first they just need to catch up. Really! It's been awhile. We chat about carousels, summer redesigns, copyright, and more.

041 - Steve Thomas Bears Witness
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 29:39
041 - Steve Thomas Bears Witness

Fresh from a Summer's hiatus, this week on LibUX we -- Amanda and Michael -- talk shop with Steve Thomas, host of the popular podcast Circulating Ideas, about the process and grind of podcasting, metrics, quality, and monetization.

Michael decided it would be a great time to try a brand new system of recording, which mucks with the audio, and rounds-out the last three minutes of the podcast with hellfire, the dreaded back button, and a very gracious guest. Lord help us. We hope you have fun.

W3R - Thursday, June 9
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 08:06
W3R - Thursday, June 9

It is Thursday, June 9th. You’re tuned in to W3 Radio (MP3), your weekly newscast about the world wide web in under ten minutes.


040 - Tim Broadwater, UX Architect
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 38:50
040 - Tim Broadwater, UX Architect

Tim is an artist and front-end developer, presently the UX Architect at West Virginia University Libraries and several times certified by the Nielsen Norman Group. He’s written two articles for LibUX ( “Value vs. Feasibility” / “Why am I doing this to our users?” ), and he’s been super amazing to work with.

I asked to pick his brain about his experience in NN/g’s certification programs and the burgeoning UX degree field – and I am left feeling pretty good about the state of library user experience design.

If you like, you can download the MP3 or subscribe to LibUX on Stitcher,iTunes, Google Play Music, or just plug our feed straight into your podcatcher of choice. Help us out and say something nice. Your sharing and positive reviews are the best marketing we could ask for.

Here are the pulls
  • 3:50 – UX Certifications and the burgeoning UX degree field
  • 9:22 – Are we at peak UX?

I know a handful of professionals who are great web developers and great designers …, and they refer to themselves as UX designers or UX architects, however they have never once conducted any type of usability study or intercept or any type of evaluation that involves their users – they don’t meet their users, ever. I think the term gets broadly applied to where it becomes a buzzword.Tim Broadwater

  • 15:55 – Pitching user research to stakeholders
  • 16:35 – Tim’s case study

We can shoot from the hip over and over and over again and sometimes we get an “okay” success, but … most of the time we get an absolute failure. How do we go forward? We have to make decisions based on user data. … Our target audience is constantly changing so we have to always be able to take the pulse.Tim Broadwater

  • 20:21 – We — Michael and Tim — love the hamburger menu. Unashamedly. And it’s going to be around for years.

I can’t deny [the hamburger menu] affords a certain amount of convenience in terms of design because of the … complexity of maintaining a front-end framework that must be as malleable [as a libraries’ must be] to adapt to so many different kinds of applications and so many different kinds of users.Michael Schofield

  • 28:50 – This has become Navigation UX Talk with Tim and Mike.
  • 34:03 – Left navigation? Ugh! As if!

I think left hanf navigation is kind of a lazy way to deal with your secondary tier navigation. There are so many different options now that are out there. I think what we’re seeing now is that with long scrolling pages and different kind of navigation items or navigations that are sticky, staying on the page, … there are different ways to get to the same information and it’s more important to evaluate what works best for you or your users, as oppose to playing it safe or going with your peers.Tim Broadwater

Why do all higher-education websites look the same? Because we’re all looking at each other’s for peer research! No one is looking at, which has this great search box functionality and I would argue that’s a perfect example for a library website … – and it uses the hamburger icon as well.Tim Broadwater


W3R - Thursday, June 2
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 07:43
W3R - Thursday, June 2

Progress toward HTML5 DRM continues; whether Trust API is the end of passwords; the Internet of Things is way big; internet giants pledge to remove hate speech and promote "independent counter-narratives" #bigbrother; Chrome 51 updates; people use ad blockers to make the web cheaper; Sublime Text 3! Who knew?; push for encryption law falters; MySpace was hacked; Americans increasingly mobile-data-plan only; and some new APIs.


Thanks for giving my new podcast -- W3 Radio -- a spin. You can help it find its footing by leaving a nice review, telling your friends, and subscribing. I'm Michael Schofield (@schoeyfield).

039 - Jean Felisme
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:10
039 - Jean Felisme

Jean Felisme is an entrepreneur, speaker, WordCamp Miami organizer, and developer at the School of Computing and Information Sciences at Florida International University. 

I’ve known Jean Felisme for awhile through WordCamp Miami. We see each other quite a bit at meetups and he’s a ton of fun – he’s also been pretty hardcore about evangelizing freelance. Recently he made the switch from freelance into the very special niche that is the higher-ed web, so when he was just six weeks into his new position at the School of Computing and Information Sciences at Florida International University I took the opportunity to pick his brain.

Hope you enjoy.

Promo for W3 Radio
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 29
Promo for W3 Radio

Do you need your web design news right now in ten minutes or less? Well it’s just your luck that soon I Michael Schofield am starting a new podcast W3 Radio - bite sized best-of the world wide web.   You’ll soon be able to tune in to W3 Radio on your pod catcher of choice and real soon at

038 - Tim Spalding
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 28:13
038 - Tim Spalding

Tim Spalding (LibraryThing and TinyCat) is on this episode of the podcast in which we are critical of library software, libraries' relationships with vendors, designing and developing TinyCat, and much more.

037 - [Terrifying] Voice User Interfaces with Jason Griffey
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:41
037 - [Terrifying] Voice User Interfaces with Jason Griffey


What if we didn’t need to learn arcane commands? What if you could use the most effective and powerful communication tool ever invented? This tool evolved over millions of years and allows you to express complex ideas in very compact and data dense ways yet can be nuanced to the width of a hair [2]. What is this tool? It is our voice.Brian Roemmele

  • 8:46 – We talk about the benefits of the data-crunching power behind the Amazon Echo in Amazon web services compared to Apple’s Siri.
  • 10:10 – IBM Watson‘s API and developer community
  • 11:30 – HTML5 Web Speech API

She saw this as an entity, as a person – not as a thing, but as a conversational partner!Jason Griffey, on his daughter’s reaction to Alexa

  • 17:00 – It’s all about empathizing with the things we use! We tend to think voice interfaces are cool because it makes doing hard programm-y things easier, but the tangential thing they bring is company, community.
  • 18:45 – On interfaces responding to your tone of voice.
  • 21:19 – Have we seen any of this implemented in libraries or at the higher-ed level?
  • 24:00 – On gender

It is no accident that every single one we have named that is commercially available and sold to people — Cortana, Siri, Google Now, and Alexa — those are female gendered. These are all bots that are the result of someone building them, they are all gendered in a way that I think is problematic.Jason Griffey

  • 30:23 – Creating a personality that would anticipate the personality you need at at that time!

036 - Penelope Singer
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 30:58
036 - Penelope Singer

Michael  talks shop with Penelope Singer (@pushingvision) -- an awesome UI designer at a major vendor --  about cross-platform and cross-media brand, animations, material design, cats, and anticipatory design.

035 - Lisa Rabey
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 35:33
035 - Lisa Rabey

Amanda and I interview Lisa Rabey ( Twitter ) ( Journal ) about how the trials of the job hunt for library technologists are exacerbated by employers’ unrealistic expectations for unicorns — full-stack engineers* who work the reference desk — given that, well, libraries aren’t really sure what they need.

This lack of definition is really a detriment. Her recent writing on this — “I Want to be a XXX Librarian” / Part Two / Part Three / Part Four — exposes just how goofy the job titles are, let alone their descriptions, unearthed and logged over the course of more than a hundred applications.

What libraries think they want versus what they actually need is the big thing nobody actually talks about.LISA RABEY

We asked her to swing by though because we echoed similar frustrations back in Episode 008: Hiring a Web Librarian, where we gawp at the bullshit of being expected to keep-up with the rapid pace of technology outside of the job for which one is intended to use it. We bring it up again later in this episode.

Loads here. Lots of wisdom.

  • 5:40 – TThe lack of consistent vocabulary to describe the kind of position employers are trying to hire for
  • 7:17 – On “unicorns”
  • 9:30 – Degree requirements and pay
  • 13:55 – Leaving the library world into doing back-end, server, or front-end development
  • 15:40 – Lisa’s current plan of attack
  • 18:00 – On Bootcamps and learning to code
  • 24:05 – Wisdom for librarians on the job hunt
  • 29:50 – Advice to people making hiring decisions
  • 34:45 – Getting in touch with Lisa

034: How "UX as a Measurement" Leads to "Service Design"
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 20:05
034: How "UX as a Measurement" Leads to "Service Design"

You might remember that in our 2016 Design Predictions episode, my number one was that we are going to see an explosion of “Service Design” in writeups, job descriptions, and the like. I hadn’t really heard about Service Design until winter 2015, but as I was editing this episode — a recut of a talk from June prior — my spiel about conceptualizing the user experience as a measurement led into a totally unintended talk about service design. This makes sense, because when we think about UX as a measurement we are thinking about holistic experiences that transcend the screen which reflect back at us the quality of the services we provide.

As usual, you support us by helping us get the word out: share a link and take a moment to leave a nice review. Thanks!

"So, exactly how goth is the user experience?"
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 11:09
"So, exactly how goth is the user experience?"

 The third episode in our new question-and-answer bonus series raises more questions than anything. Meg Ecclestone stumbles into a blooper reel. We hope you enjoy.

  • 0:32 – “I worry about the state of virtual reality for libraries.”
  • 0:45 – “I always tell people that in librarianship we need to dream smaller, but you have dreamed very small, Michael. Very small indeed.”
  • 2:16 – “How goth is the state of library user experience?”
  • 3:35 – Meg and Michael go to camp.

This is so Hot Topic.MEG ECCLESTONE

  • 5:05 – We are clearly off topic.
  • 7:48 – “On Friday, April 16th, Deathrock came to town.”

You can subscribe to LibUX on Stitcher, iTunes, or plug our feed right into your podcatcher of choice. Help us out and say something nice. You can find every podcast on

"Why are library websites so hard to get right?"
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 09:07
"Why are library websites so hard to get right?"

The second question asked in our new question-and-answer bonus series. Meg Ecclestone and Michael Schofield talk about the plight of library web design.

A UX Shop for One with Stephen Francoeur
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 31:53
A UX Shop for One with Stephen Francoeur

Stephen Francoeur is among the first user experience librarians and in this episode he shares his insight about thriving as a one-person UX shop. We talk about organizational buy-in, how best to pitch and communicate UX work, as well as a super interesting tear on imposter syndrome. For show notes, articles, and more episodes, visit

What can libraries learn from the FANG playbook?
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 17:12
What can libraries learn from the FANG playbook?

We read "The FANG Playbook" on Stratechery by Ben Thompson, which inspires some thoughts about the opportunity for libraries to exert control over the user experience and their negotiations with vendors, because libraries supply the commodity vendors want: patrons. 

"What research techniques and tools are actually used in library UX work?"
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 14:34
"What research techniques and tools are actually used in library UX work?"

In a new question-and-answer bonus series, Meg Ecclestone and Michael mull over one user experience topic at a time. This week, "what research techniques and tools are actually used in library UX work?"

2016 Trends for Library Web Design
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 26:48
2016 Trends for Library Web Design

Our first podcast of the new year kicks off with our predictions for trends in library web design. We're stoked to see how we tally-up at the end of the year. 

1. 2:19 - "Service Design" will be the new "User Experience Design"2. 4:39 - the future of WordPress is JavaScript3. 5:07 - the library app is finally dead - moreover the app in general as something distinct from the web will bottom-out its unpopularity4. 9:41 - more predictive / anticipatory services5. 12:16 - maturing API Driven Design (inspired by [Tim Broadwater]( 15:54 - web animation everywhere you look (follow [Rachel Nabors]( 16:51 - #libweb drops the carousel, embraces the gigantor hero-unit search8. 19:12 - design around time, as in just-in-time information9. 20:11 - the market for prototyping tools explodes 10. 22:18 - Slack. Just Slack.

The Future of WordPress is JavaScript
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 28:27
The Future of WordPress is JavaScript

Amanda and Michael talk about what it means now that the architecture for making API endpoints easier was added to WordPress 4.4 alongside the announcement of Calypso, the JavaScript front-end of WordPress-dot-com websites. Also, we mull over how WordPress gives libraries more negotiating power and options in the vendor space, as well as learning jQuery before JavaScript - we like it.

Brianna Marshall and Cameron Cook
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 38:54
Brianna Marshall and Cameron Cook

Brianna Marshall and Cameron Cook talk content strategy, humor, LITA Forum, and the redesign of Research Data Services at UW-Madison.

2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 27:44

Okay, so, ebook readership is fine regardless of misread data about its doom, but as of 2015 it still has yet to pull meaningfully away from print. Amanda and Michael talk about the negative impact of poor user experience on business - except for one outlier: Amazon Kindle self-published books.

20 Questions
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 26:34
20 Questions

Michael was grilled by #LIS3267 about what it's like to do web design, the future of libraries, maintaining work / life balance in a highly disrupted field, and other slightly neurotic grad-student things. Here are some of the gems and Amanda's take!

WordPress for Libraries with Chad Haefele
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 33:34
WordPress for Libraries with Chad Haefele

Chad Haefele joins Amanda and Michael to talk about his book WordPress for Libraries, usability testing using tools from Optimal Workshop, and the inglorious fate of Google Wave. 

Find show notes and more podcasts and articles like this at

Anticipatory Design
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 26:25
Anticipatory Design

Update: fixed audio! This week Amanda and Michael muse about Anticipatory Design, and whether it is possible - and ethical - to craft a user experience so personalized through data and context that it ultimately eliminates choice.

The User Experience (Part Two)
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 27:22
The User Experience (Part Two)

This is the second part to a talk given June 3, 2015, called The User Experience (here’s part one!).

Show Notes and Snippets

When an organization is well and truly steeped in UX, with total awareness of and buy-in on user-centered thinking, its staff enact those principles, whether they’re facing patrons or not. In short, UX thinking makes a person considerate. Coral Sheldon-Hess

The customer journey begins with a user story: as a _____, I want to _____, so that _____.”

Increasingly, the journey often begins online and is punctuated by time and potential disenchantment before the patron even enters the building Michael Schofield

Libraries are approaching their mobile moment. Whether it’s true for you now, it will definitely be true for you later. … Navigation must flow. The content must be worth it. Everything must be fast. There is no place for bullshit. Michael Schofield

Where your patrons spend most of their time influences their basic expectations of the library. Being user-centric demands that we are aware and don’t scoff at the habits our users have. Convention matters.Michael Schofield

  • The most relevant trends libraries should watch are in e-commerce.
  • When people talk about the size of websites in bytes, think in terms of seconds
  • After 10 seconds, there is a missed opportunity. You will never know how many patrons you failed to reach, but the data suggests it’s a lot.

The DELIGHTful Episode
2017-12-22 18:01:49 UTC 29:05
The DELIGHTful Episode

The DELIGHTful Episode was the second we ever recorded, but otherwise lost until recently. We read Jim Shamlin's "Satisfaction, Delight, Disappointment, and Shock." We talk about inspiring delight through customer service and novelty. Other gems: we like Treehouse, jingles, book lists, WordPress, and free dessert.