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Designing Web Usability [Paperback]

Jakob Nielsen
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (222 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Dec 20 1999 156205810X 978-1562058104 1

Users experience the usability of a web site before they have committed to using it and before making any purchase decisions. The web is the ultimate environment for empowerment, and he or she who clicks the mouse decides everything. Designing Web Usability is the definitive guide to usability from Jakob Nielsen, the world's leading authority. Over 250,000 Internet professionals around the world have turned to this landmark book, in which Nielsen shares the full weight of his wisdom and experience. From content and page design to designing for ease of navigation and users with disabilities, he delivers complete direction on how to connect with any web user, in any situation. Nielsen has arrived at a series of principles that work in support of his findings: 1. That web users want to find what they're after quickly; 2. If they don't know what they're after, they nevertheless want to browse quickly and access information they come across in a logical manner. This book is a must-have for anyone who thinks seriously about the web.

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Designing Web Usability + Mobile Usability + Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability (2nd Edition)
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Product Description

From Amazon

Creating Web sites is easy. Creating sites that truly meet the needs and expectations of the wide range of online users is quite another story. In Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity, renowned Web usability guru Jakob Nielsen shares his insightful thoughts on the subject. Packed with annotated examples of actual Web sites, this book sets out many of the design precepts all Web developers should follow.

This guide segments discussions of Web usability into page, content, site, and intranet design. This breakdown skillfully isolates for the reader many subtly different challenges that are often mixed together in other discussions. For example, Nielsen addresses the requirements of viewing pages on varying monitor sizes separately from writing concise text for "scanability." Along the way, the author pulls no punches with his opinions, using phrases like "frames: just say no" to immediately make his feelings known. Fortunately, his advise is some of the best you'll find.

One of the unique aspects of this title is the use of actual statistics to buttress the author's opinions on various techniques and technologies. He includes survey results on sizes of screens, types of queries submitted to search portals, response times by connection type and more. This book is intended as the first of two volumes--focusing on the "what." The author promises a follow-up title that will show the "hows" and, based on this installation, we can't wait. --Stephen W. Plain

Topics covered: Cross-platform design, response time considerations, writing for the Web, multimedia implementation, navigation strategies, search boxes, corporate intranet design, accessibility for disabled users, international considerations, and future predictions.

From Library Journal

While everyone wants to design cool web sites, no one wants to think simple and consider whether the design actually accomplishes its goal, which is usually to sell, teach, or entertain. The sole exception is Nielsen, who has made a living speaking and writing about what works and what doesn't work in interactive media. His simple, well-written, and well-illustrated book discusses web usability, page design, content design, site design, intranet design, accessibility for users with disabilities, international use, future directions, and simplicity. Buy more than one copy.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars good intro Jan. 13 2013
By Vedge
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
its a good book to get introduce to the usability standard. Lots of example are covered in the book. a+
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good base April 7 2006
This is a good book if you've never heard about usability. I agree with the review saying it would be time for a review though...
I find it too extremist on some points. A designer would look at this (and surely his website) and say he'll never want to do another website if it has to be that way...
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5.0 out of 5 stars This is the bible March 7 2005
By Blair
You may not follow all of Jacob Neilson's guidelines, but you can't start any website construction or redesign project without reading this book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Reference, but a bit outdated July 18 2004
This book is a must for every web developer, although I think it's time for a newer version, as some of the examples and theories are based on pre-2000 studies.
Overall you can expect a great insight on correct web-design, colors matching, liquid pages, use of navigation and quick respond to user needs.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book and easy to use and understand! June 26 2004
By A Customer
Another excellent source of information from the INTERNET guru of them all! This book is a definite MUST HAVE for any website designer, newbie to web design and anyone and everyone who has an online business. Simple, easy to understand visuals compliment the text, which is written in a very simplistic manner. This book is wonderful - magnificent - excellent, and will help you greatly understand the elements of successful web design. I've used it to consistently update my own website, at:
If you don't have this book, you're missing out on your single-most-important investment in your professional life!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but seriously needs a second edition May 23 2004
This book came out in 1999 and you have to be prepared for that. It's still about 80% useful, which is amazing considering how fast web technology is moving. I love the way the author uses lots of actual pictures of websites to illustrate every point. If he would bring it into the third millenium, I'd probably give it five stars instead of three.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Common sense reasoning March 17 2004
I'm a designer and I design web sites for a living, and this book didn't click with me. The topics in the book are repeated over and over and over and over again--simplicity and usability.
A better theme would've been "achieving beauty from simplicity".
While this is a good lesson to learn, unfortunately this makes for boring reading, and Nielson isn't even witty when compared to Edward Tufte.
Pros: Great academic reading, pages are in full color, great for
web designers who can't design and need to conform to
common everyday looking web sites.
Cons: Expensive for the little insights of do's and don'ts,
too much of the insights are really just common sense.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good conecpts, BAD DESIGN March 17 2004
This man can really tell you how to design a website that will satisify user well. He has researched the field of web design and usability stats and knows his stuff. But don't let the man design a webpage by himself. He's a good usability guy, not a good designer.
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