Sunday, 1 April 2012

Book Review: "Don't Make Me Think"

Cover image of Steve Krug's book, Don't make me thingk
This one has been doing the rounds amongst the librarians in both Townsville and Cairns as we try to figure out how to tame the mutant octopus that is improve our web site. If you've noticed a few improvements in our site over the last year or so, this book is partly responsible:

Don't make me think! : a common sense approach to web usability by Steve Krug

It's been around for a while, and a few things he talks about in the book are out of date now (my, how the Internet can change in five years), but the book aims to educate people about making a web site easy to use, read and navigate - principles that are still relevant even if his examples have moved on.

The book is logical, well laid out, easy to read - and a quick read as well. Krug designed it to be an "air-plane read", meaning you can get through the book in the equivalent time it would take for a long flight.

If you've been looking at web site design, you've probably been looking at a lot of "how to" books - things that show you what code or tools and needed to do this thing or that thing to get the look you want.

Krug's book encourages you to think about the end user for your site, and provides a lot of "common sense" considerations that you might miss if you get too caught up in making your design new and exciting and different.

Usability is often overlooked in website design, but it's an important aspect that is worth consideration.

In addition to the book (which may be available for loan if the librarians ever stop borrowing it), you can also check out his website: Advanced Common Sense

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