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Author: Mark Fennell | Website: http://www.flashkit.com
FK: There's been a lot of talk recently about "user experience" - you just used it. Microsoft is extolling their .Net initiative and Windows "XP", presumably for experience. What is all this talk about experience and how does it relate to web design?

NB: Balthaser has always been about user experience. The B1 site was solely about user experience. There was little of value content-wise in that site - it was a total user experience. It was all about the vessel. B2, or :Fx is also about user experience albeit in a different way. User experience is so very important. It is a holistic design philosophy that encompasses everything from the UI to the back-end application middle-ware. It dictates what exactly a user is experiencing emotionally for as long as they give you their time. It is a design discipline. It is not done haphazardly or as an after-thought.

FK: By was of example, what about :Fx takes into account user experience?

NB: When done correctly, a successful user experience is non-intrusive. It is subtle but it's definitely missed if it's taken away. For example, in :Fx we spent months, literally architecting the user experience. Defining it and I mean really nuts and bolts defining it. It was one of the hardest things about the project. As a user experience, :Fx had to encompass everything about the Balthaser brand and what the B1 site established and at the same time define its own identity by way of experience. Where the B1 site was like a roller-coaster, the B2 site needed to be more subtle. While the Balthaser brand was about excitement and energy, B2 had to gracefully evolve the company into a more sophisticated and elegant entity. This was the challenge. So we needed to ask ourselves, as you always do when defining these things: What will Joe or Angela experience when they come to :Fx? That's a loaded question but if you believe in user experience you've got to ask it and then answer it for every single moment Joe or Angela are with you.

» Level Advanced

Added: 2001-04-11
Rating: 8 Votes: 65
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» Author
Mark Fennell, Flash Kit.com webmaster and cult leader
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