RE: [IxDA] Discount testing techniques and ressources

3 Aug 2010 - 9:45pm
4 years ago
1 reply
850 reads
Allison Corbett


Longterm lurker, first time replier...

I'm currently reading Steve Krug's Rocket Surgery Made Easy and really enjoying it. It's pretty much entirely focused on discount usability methods. It's a quick read, high-level enough that you could give it to management. I'm a UX designer in an Agile environment, and I'm finding it inspiring for techniques that are actually implementable in our very rapid-fire environment. I think it's targeted more for people who aren't in the usability field, and it's arguable that his discount techniques don't yield "statistically valid" results (in fact, he addresses this point in the book) but based on personal experience I absolutely buy his argument that some testing is better than none. Personally, I'm hoping to apply his ideas to establish more regular iterative testing with a few users, and then use that as a "foot in the door" to prove the concept and expand our testing efforts.

Jakob Nielsen is probably the best-known proponent of discount usability testing. If you're looking for the nitty gritty, his book Usability Engineering covers discount techniques in some detail. It's pretty old now, but I think most of it still applies. He covers in depth the statistical and analytical parts that Steve Krug doesn't get into. There are probably some useful resources on his Web site, too.

For testing paper prototypes, I love Carolyn Snyder's Paper Prototyping book. Lots of good tips in there for usability testing in general, too--I've applied some of her ideas to testing HTML prototypes as well.

I've found to be useful for usability testing in general--it's apparently targeted towards government users, but I'm in the corporate world and I've always found it helpful.

Hope this helps!


-----Original Message----- From: [] On Behalf Of Jan Dittrich Sent: Monday, August 02, 2010 10:44 AM To: Subject: [IxDA] Discount testing techniques and ressources

Hi there,

I am in search for discount methods for usability testing. This will be for teaching students how to make their interaction design ideas real. There are some good ideas out there how to gether requirements via discount methods - but I am looking for ways for testing prototypes etc. Does anybody know good ressources on this topic or has own experiences he/she would like to share?

cheers, jan

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4 Aug 2010 - 7:33am
Jan Dittrich

Thanks for sharing your ressources. It is a helpful list!

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