guerillagirl – user experience designer

guerillagirl's (ux) design journal

by stef

What is my job in one sentence ?

It’s not that easy to describe, really. I just spontaneously set myself a 15 min timeframe to write down what I actually say to others when I try to explain what I am doing for a living. I call myself an “experience strategist”. You can also say “user experience strategist” or “user experience designer”, but often, users are also customers. And I have a broad understanding of “user experience”, which means I do not narrow it down to the usage of digital products but also to the interaction with the whole organization behind the product and the holistic perception which is generated by interacting with the company/organization (through their website, app, insert “touchpoint” of your choice here).

This is really the core which came out of the long description:

We consult companies how they can reduce the discrepancy between business- and customer/user goals to ensure the business success of the company.

by stef

UX copy: Using plain language is good for your business

It’s really nearly all about perceived intentions towards a person, you can break things down to this basic thing when it comes to communication/interaction which includes also brand perception.
Don’t use jargon or internal terminology no one except insiders will understand when it comes to copywriting for your website. Good, clear, easy to read copy is good for your audience and therefore it is good for your business – simply because simple, plain language means your site, app or product is talking “human”.

It increases a) the readability and also b) – which is really important – the credibility because the usage of plain language is perceived as being transparent towards others and not hiding behind a hard to understand terminology which may be perceived as a sign to be more skeptic towards you, thinking even you may have bad intentions towards your users. (“What are they trying hiding from me? / Don’t they want me to understand?” )

Watch a good video about this topic here:

by stef

GDPR is good for user experience.

“In short, GDPR will make privacy a mandatory design principle–and, in doing so, may redefine the profession.”

Great article on why designers should care about the GDPR.  Because  it makes us rembember that  we are designing products for people not data/numbers  –  and that businesses should have the ultimate goal to treat their users/customers well and with respect.

Read here:

by stef

Computers are social actors, again and again

See also:

by stef

About Intelligence, meaning, the mind and machines

The video above contains a very short introduction to the chinese room argument, introduced by philosopher John Searle in the 1980 in his essay “Minds, Brains and Programs”. and it fits to my last post about Googles Duplex natural speech pattern.

The chinese room argument is a thought experiment with whose help Searle (who is btw deep into the philosophy of mind) wanted to prove that it is not enough for a computer to pass the Turing test in order to be considered intelligent. The Turing test was developed by Alan Turing in the 50s as a definition of intelligence where Turing claimed that if one cannot distinguish the answers of a computer from the answers of a person, this computer could be regarded as “intelligent”. So, passing the Turing test is therefore not a sufficient criterion for so-called “strong artificial intelligence”. In addition, it questions the computational theories of the mind and the question if machines are able to think.

This is a huge and interesting topic and it is deeply related to intentionality in human beings and the body-mind problem in philosophy which is still “unsolved”. I think this is the most fascinating topic I have ever been introduced to since I study psychology.

Minds, Brains and Programs by John Searle:
About the chinese room argument:

by stef

Google Duplex’ natural speech pattern: It’s a human? No it’s not!

I think we now go really deep into the uncanny valley. I think it is of psychological and also sociological relevance that we know if we speak to another human or a machine.The point is, it may be perceived as cheating, playing with trust.

by stef

Ladies that UX Berlin #17: Portfolio Night!


Excited to announce our Ladies that UX Berlin May meetup where we will discuss UX Portfolios!

Is your portfolio in need of a refresh or are you wondering what to put in it? Is your CV up-to-date? Join us for an in-depth discussion with Olga Madejska who works as Amazon Web Services Design System UX Lead about building a designer CV and portfolio.
Also Ladies who are confident in reviewing portfolios are more than welcome as we will offer some Folio Quick checks on demand after the talk!

Massive thanks to SinnerSchrader Swipe GmbH who will host us this month!

Ladies that UX Berlin, Tuesday, May 22, 2017; 6:30-9:00PM.
This month’s event will be hosted by SinnerSchrader Swipe. The location is Friedenstraße 91a, 10249 Berlin (Friedrichshain)

Please make sure to RSVP here:

Are you passionate about a special UX / Design topic? Why not give a short talk on that one of our next events? It’s a great place to get started and train your speaking skills ia a very welcoming environment!
If so or if you would be interested in hosting one of our upcoming events please make sure to reach out! :)

by stef

UX Priorities? Check your Analytics Data!

Good explanation on why checking you analytics data is important before you decide on UX priorities: You can check if previously observed behavior occurs frequently for many visitors, so if eg usability evaluation observations are truly indicative of your entire audience and it also helps in avoiding opinion based design decisions on what to do next but rather base your UX priorities on data:

by stef

Tohuwabohu – heute: Kapitalismus kills User Experience.

Guten Morgen, die SONNE scheint,schier unglaublich. Licht! Blauer Himmel. Worum geht es denn heute? Ah ja, ich habe unlĂ€ngst einen lapidaren tweet abgesetzt, dass ja fast alles, was heute an so heisser Luft rausgelassen wird, drĂŒben im Businessland der Whiteboards und Flipcharts, eh alles schon mal behauptet wurde, nur mit mehr RĂŒckgrat und detaillierter und besser eben.

Steile These, ne? Nunja, ich habe ja auch eingefĂŒgt, dass diese Wahrnehmung an meinem fortgeschrittenen Alter liegen mag. Well, das Ganze ist natĂŒrlich sehr banal und wohl der Lauf der Dinge, sonst wĂ€re ja auch kein Fortschritt möglich. Interessant fand ich eine Antwort, die auf das Jahr 1960 und einen Denker ebenda verweist, der damals bereits genau das beschreibt was heutzutage mit einem Buzzword –welches ich aufgrund seiner AbsurditĂ€t wirklich gar nicht wiederholen mag – als der neue hot shizzle vermarktet wird, wĂ€hrend wir Business Dudes und Ladies in postmodernen-no-hierarchy-Businessoutfits wie zB Flipflops staunend und applaudierend drumrumstehen, und der neuzeitliche Marktschreier auf einer beliebigen Konferenz im diesseits die neuen steilen Thesen an die Wand nagelt. Ich nehme mich dabei auch gar nicht aus, dies nur so am Rande.
Well, ja genau das ist wohl der Lauf der Dinge denke ich mir wiederholt – interessiert den damaligen Denker googlend. Sicher gab es auch im Jahre xy bereits einen Denker, der das VerhĂ€ltnis von Machtpositionen und weniger MĂ€chtigen beleuchtet hatte. Ich sage absichtlich nicht „Business“ und „Kunde“, da dies ja nun tatsĂ€chlich etwas eher neuzeitliches ist, hĂ€ngt quasi mit dem Kapitalismus sowie der Globalisierung, also dem Abbau der Handelsschranken zusammen. Denn zuvor da hatten die GeschĂ€ftsleute doch 1:1 – also quasi eher so face -to -face, person-to-person Beziehungen zu ihren Kunden, und mussten sich nicht von irgendwelchen „Shareholdern“ in die Sache pfuschen lassen, oder?

Um es kurz zu machen: Kapitalismus destroys (positive) User (und Customer) Experience. Dabei fĂ€llt mir doch gleich ein GesprĂ€ch mit meiner Kollegin Jenny ein, bei dem wir letztens in einem dazu passenden Kontext darĂŒber philosophierten, dass der Föderalismus dies ebenso tut. Also wie immer: nicht der Föderalismus an sich (der ja positiv ist), sondern die Anwendung föderalistischer Prinzipien (was eine Begriffskombination!) auf zB Webseiten, aber dies ist nochmals ein ganz anderes Thema. ;)
Wie auch immer, schönen Montag allerseits.


by stef

Cboard: A Browser-Based, Open Source Tool for Alternative Communication


What a great tool.

“Have you ever lost your voice? How did you handle that? Perhaps you carried a notebook and pen to scribble notes. Or jotted quick texts on your phone. Have you ever traveled somewhere that you didn’t speak or understand the language everyone around you was speaking?”

Read more here:

Head over to the web-application:

by stef

Use storytelling to build empathy for your users


This is a great podcast episode. I’ve once heard that in gym and I was like: yes! This is how to build “empathy” or a feeling of an “ally” who must solve a problem and you want to help her to do that.

“[…] Then, when we go in-home and study these users, we have this process, which is pretty fun, where we try and think of the user as a character. We put together something that we call a user profile/character. It’s a prompt where we would learn about the users and then create this character where, kind of like how writers would think of a character for their story, a user wants something, but they can’t get it. There’s something that’s blocking them, whether it’s a technical thing, environmental, or social. Then, now you have a user, which we would call a character, and we’d give them a name. They want something that they can’t get. These studies, we would bring the designers and the engineers with us. Data scientists, QA people, everybody would come and really understand this character. We would run a two-day workshop where the product is actually one where everybody on this team will take that character and map out a story about how we can take this user, apply what Wink has in terms of technical capabilities to get them all the way around to achieving what they want. That’s what we create as a product vision. Usually, we think of” it as: What can Wink do in the next two years to help this user achieve that problem?

Listen here: