Confessions of a usability addict

My name is Satu and I’m a usability addict. Here’s a story to prove it.

It had been several months since my last expert evaluation, and the withdrawal symptoms were kicking in. I had a bad itch to evaluate something and offer improvement ideas. I could not help it. Whenever I saw a user interface, usability checklists crept into my mind and before I knew it, I had started to evaluate the interface in my mind.

Luckily right about those times an old colleague contacted me. He had a favor to ask, and wanted to talk about it over lunch. As I was between jobs and had eaten way too many lunches by myself lately, the offer sounded great.

So we met and he told me he had established a small company that makes a web-based employee engagement survey tool – and he would need user experience comments about it. Oh lucky day! There I was with my itch and he handed me something to scratch it with. So I joyfully agreed to check out his web app, and on the top of it he paid for the lunch! I didn’t even mind the fact that now I was practically working for food.


Later I did my evaluation, and oh, how good it felt! I had forgotten how nice it feels: both when I find something really usable and when I find something that should be improved. The latter case is extra-sweet, because then I can also offer improvement ideas and thus make the world a better place -at least if the improvements get implemented.

Afterwards I felt satisfied for a while, but now I want more. I miss usability testing. I miss interviews. I miss surveys. I long to design and improve user interfaces and concepts based on facts from users. I’m eager to develop processes to be more user-centric. And I have a hunger to evangelize and train people about user experience.

I cannot help it. I really am a usability addict.

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