Caroline Sober-James has journeyed from database architect to UX designer to a fellow object-oriented UX evangelist. She’s the UX Director at Acumium in Madison, WI, where she's striving to lead her team with “radical candor.” We discuss what leaders can do to create an environment for innovation and how team members can demand it. We talk about how OOUX helps with client meetings and we debate how OOUX applies to fantasy games, board games, and classic Nintendo. Enjoy!
In this, my second speaking gig at Design Content Conference, I outline the four principles of intuitive design and go deep on the subject of messy objects. Stay tuned 'til the end, when I do a nerve-wracking live demo introducing my iterative ORCA process (Objects, Relationships, Capabilities, and Attributes)!
In this edition of the "Adobe UXpert Reviews" series, I examine how EdX accomplishes a refreshingly natural browsing experience — curious users can navigate from subject, to course, to instructor, to school, and back again without ever needing to pick through the hierarchical main navigation. This is one of the primary principles of object-oriented user experience (OOUX): contextual navigation through object relationships.
In this talk at the Design & Content Conference in Vancouver, I explain how OOUX can help you avoid the UX fails that confuse and frustrate users. Stay tuned because in the last third of the talk, I give a sneak-peek into my OOUX process and how I use Webflow to build CMS prototypes.
Never have I read a book so closely aligned with my way of working and with the content that I teach (Object-Oriented UX). Literally a quarter of the book is highlighted, with things like “YUSSS FINALLY” written in the margins. It's spot-on about the importance of understanding the domain and how objects connect in the context of that domain. As the authors rightly state, “Design starts from sharing a common language.” This book is a manual for creating that shared language, which is the scaffolding for any strong UX. If you want to create products that are more future-proof and intuitive, this book is a must-read. Great job, Carrie and Mike!
I interviewed with ZipBoard for their "Stories for the web development & e-learning world" series. I talk about how OOUX helps designers create clear, consistent, and usable objects and how that results in naturally intuitive digital environments. We also get into my process for OOUX development and get down to brass tacks on client work, deliverables, OOUX workshops and more!
In the modern, digital world, anything is possible. Technology can seem like magic and has the capacity to take us from merely mortal to superhuman! But if the digital-space interfaces stray too far from our visceral expectations of the physical world, users will become unsure, confused, and unhappy. This article spells out why we should design with lizard brains in mind to create intuitive interfaces.
A full-length, 90-minute Object-Oriented UX talk I delivered in Warsaw, Poland during the MCE conference. Strap in and enjoy!
In this post, I revise and update an article by the same name that I published in the November 2016 issue of NET magazine. I look into how users understand and process their world, how thought, communication, understanding, and perception are all object-oriented, and how when digital design aligns with real-world objects, it enables better interaction design.
Pivoting smoothly from action to action is all well and good, but when interactions feel abstract to users, the sense of context gets lost. In this follow-up to Object-Oriented UX, I will take you from big-picture OOUX frameworks to confidently targeting actions that meet the needs of your users.
Often we still cobble-together design patterns and content modules as we go rather than truly thinking systemically. In this article I present a methodology that will show you how defining the objects our users interact with, and the relationships between them, opens doors to more interconnected—and successful—user experiences.
The Core Model (or "Cores and Paths") is a great tool for fleshing-out your objects through brainstorming ways that users encounter objects ("inward paths") and where they go next ("forward paths"). In the article, Ida refers to "core pages", but I prefer not to jump to conclusions about the implementation. So, while reading this one, I'd recommend thinking about "objects" instead of "core pages." Overall, the Core Model fits nicely into the philosophy of OOUX!
Friends, a zombie apocalypse is upon us: an onslaught of new mobile devices, platforms, and screen sizes, hordes of them descending on our cities every day. We're outmatched. There aren't enough designers and developers to battle every platform. There aren't enough editors and writers to populate every screen size. Defeating the zombies will require flexibility and stamina—in our content.
Mike did an excellent case study on how the BBC used Domain-Driven Design (a grandparent of OOUX) to revolutionize how the BBC creates, manages, publishes, and displays their massive trove of articles, video clips, and photo galleries. He reminds us that users "are not interested in a video, [they] are interested in what the video is about. [They] are interested in real things—real world things." Remind you of anything? He also goes into the importance of creating "canonical" objects, SEO benefits of structuring content, and how connecting content can "unlock new user journeys."
Have you heard the term "Object-Oriented?" Have you maybe dismissed it as something that only applies to developers and techies? Think again. If you work in the web/tech industry, the chances are you’ve heard the term Object-Oriented in reference to "object-oriented programming languages." But object-oriented thinking isn't just for the devs. "Object-Oriented" is a way of viewing and deconstructing systems. Paul makes the case that it's just about time we all started getting on board the Object-Oriented thought train.
These are MIke Atherton's slides for his 2013 "half-day introduction to content modeling and the creation and management of structured, adaptive content" workshop. Delivered at IA Summit 2013.
Care about content? Better copy isn’t enough. As devices and channels multiply—and as users expect to relate, share, and shift information quickly—we need content that can go more places, more seamlessly. "Content Everywhere" will help you stop creating fixed, single-purpose content and start making it more future-ready, flexible, reusable, manageable, and meaningful wherever it needs to go.
This is a book that I wish I had written! Actually, the book that I will one day write on OOUX is the "for dummies" version of this book. My weathered copy of this book is rife with highlights, scribbles in the margins, and dogeared pages. It's not an easy read (some paragraphs I had to read 3 times) but it's fascinating for anyone serious about information architecture and how laws of perception and understanding should drive our IA designs.
This workshop gave me a great foundation. Because I am new to UX I had an advantage—learning OOUX as my foundation will definitely give me a leg up on my career.
Great workshop! It gives you a method that enables you to tackle UX problems more systematically. I found it extremely useful and have already implemented the method on the project I am currently working on. The method pushed me to ask myself new questions and to develop much more coherent solutions than the ones I would have developed without it.
Sophia brings her passion for solving problems and creating functional products to every minute of her OOUX workshop. She provides real world samples of the challenges of developing digital products and offers up OOUX as a viable solution to improve their functionality. Participants are invited into the process through demonstration, discussion and group exercises. If you're in the business of creating digital products, OOUX is a must for your toolbox!
OOUX is a game-changer and you need it in your life. Period. Four of us (2 UXers, a front-end dev, and a CEO) attended Sophia’s workshop in Chicago this summer, and it remains easily the most valuable training dollars I’ve ever spent. The workshop was fun and engaging, and Sophia’s passion for this topic is infectious. We came away so energized we fired up an impromptu object mapping session with a client not even 24 hours after leaving our training. Since then, we’ve continued to apply what we’ve learned, and are seeing ongoing dividends for designers, developers, and business stakeholders alike. OOUX is a power tool that you need in your toolbox.
In a matter of a few days, Sophia taught the InfoTycoon team the fundamentals of OOUX Methodology, and leveraging OOUX she rapidly grasped and understood the complex context of our solution/platform. Over a short three month period, Sophia completely redesigned InfoTycoon's UX for the next version of our industry-leading platform. Sophia's limitless positive energy combined with her OOUX methodology very successfully sped us through a challenging project with a very tight deadline. All of that and she is a delight to work with. I highly recommend Sophia and look forward to working with her in the future.
After reading OOUX articles, I had started to think in terms of Objects in my design process, but I wasn't sure how to bring it all together. Sophia's process makes sense to me, and is helping me to organize all of the details of my current project in a way that will be easier to communicate with my internal team on the project, and our client. I finished the class 2 days ago, and started applying what I learned this morning to my current project.
It's amazing that Sophia packed so much into two days. Just the right level of valuable UX techniques while being entertaining and keeping our attention focused. I'd highly recommend this to any UX Designer or Product Team member.
I first heard Sophia’s OOUX presentation in a Saturday afternoon workshop in early 2015, since then I have had her present to our Cool Blue team, consult on projects and most recently several of us attended her 2017 masters workshop. From the start this methodology made a lot of sense to me and others in our firm. I’ve been involved in web projects over the last 20 years where it was too easy to get lost in the weeds of hierarchical menus and site maps but lose focus the important items and goals for the site. Responsive sites have only created more tension in planning concise experiences and site architecture – we believe Object Oriented UX provides the correct framework for these modern complexities and delivering results!
OOUX is an engaging and super fun class with a lot of interactivity and thoughtful, funny explanations of human behavior. The principles I learned will help me and my team to begin thinking about a modular design framework that's smarter, more consistent, and will ultimately help our end-users adopt them with less heartache. Looking forward to applying this to our work, thank you Sophia!
OOUX training was one of the most valuable experiences in my career as a technical writer.
"OOUX has been an incredibly valuable tool in my UX tool belt. Sophia explains her methods for reframing content and distilling them into objects with great examples, insights, and practical ways to apply the principles in real life."
Sophia’s OOUX training session with our team, as well as her support and answering all our questions, gave our team the tools and confidence to comfortably lead workshops with our product partners. We’ve evolved our understanding of our site’s framework, identifying areas for improved contextual content, and developed an agreed-to approach to information architecture. The product team was so highly engaged and receptive—they looked to incorporating the OOUX methodology into their next project.
Sophia brings a passion and enthusiasm to the OOUX Masterclass that is contagious. It's pleasantly counterintuitive when you leave the class having conquered complexity by having mastered the basics. I recommend this class for anybody who is looking for a better design framework and who isn't?
I initially reached out to Sophia for some 1:1 OOUX training sessions, and in the end, I got so much more. Right from the start, Sophia was responsive and supportive. We scheduled 6 sessions where she took me through some practice assignments before jumping into the project I was currently “OOUXing.” We communicated regularly by phone and email, discussing careers, goals, life-hacks, family, and of course a lot of OOUX. Sophia has been an invaluable resource and I am so thankful that I made the decision to work with her.
I walked away from both sessions having learned a ton. The delivery was awesome: broken in manageable chunks, sprinkled with good humor, and most of all very hands-on. I am enjoying the OOUX framework and can't wait to apply it to my next project. It seems I have been designing using a variation of this method all along, though I just didn't know what to call it. Now I do!
Your OOUX articles have been my primary inspiration for the past few months. For me, the methodology acted exactly as a bridge between project goals and design. It also removes the uncertainty of where to start.
I attended Sophia Voychehovski's workshop regarding OOUX at EuroIA in 2016 Amsterdam. I was convinced to try it right away. Since then, I have integrated the method into my everyday workflow. I found that using this object-oriented method is a real advantage to maintain a clear and rational vision throughout my design process.