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Help Us Make URF10 Perfect

Posted on Nov 4th, 2010 by Nate Bolt

We’re putting the final touches on User Research Friday 2010, which is coming up on November 19th (and the 18th for workshops). As part of making sure the day is filled with learning and joy, we’d love your help with two questions about some of our content:

1. What would you like to hear about from Darrell Benatar, the CEO of

He’s agreed to come talk if there’s something of clear value he can share with a group of usability professionals. Want him to come? Send a great question or two you’d like to hear him answer. Keep in mind, he’s created a successful product that offers self-moderated research, but it’s not like he’s a practitioner who created that whole category. If you’re not familiar with the tool, here’s a detailed review.

2. Is it possible to discuss eye tracking without a war?

There seems to be two entrenched sides to eye tracking – those who think it’s a waste of money and time, and those who think it’s valuable. Since we have all been to panels that wasted our very life essence, we’d like to make sure our eye tracking panel is valuable for you. What questions or topics would you like to hear about on eye tracking from Jared Spool, Nick Finck, Leslie Cachon, and Brian Krausz?

Leave your questions as comments, or if you’d prefer to remain anonymous, email them to Nate and he will guard your identity. For reals.

7 Responses to “Help Us Make URF10 Perfect”

  1. Ron
    Nov 05, 2010

    I'd be interested to hear if Darrell has seen a difference in how designers use versus people that do more UX research.

  2. Susan
    Nov 05, 2010

    1. Interested from the standpoint of the concept of self-moderation. What the keys and pitfalls are to effectiveness. What he's learned from customer use.

    2. Not applicable to me. I'd just watch the pies fly.

  3. Thomas
    Nov 08, 2010

    I like throwing pies, so here goes nothing.

    Eyetracking isn't a waste of time. It's a waste of time relatively. Compared to many other methods of improvement, optimization, design by patterns and guidelines, testing and the like, eyetracking is on the bottom of the list of things you should do.

  4. Richard Boardman
    Nov 08, 2010

    Thanks for opening this discussion!

    1. Usertesting – I'd like to hear about how customers are using the product (any unforeseen uses?), best practices that have been established, common pitfalls, and future plans for the product.

    2. Eyetracking – I'm in No Man's land on this one, with the pies flying overhead. Its useful methodologically in some special contexts (e.g. assessing users initial focus points on a page, or analyzing very quick repetitive user actions – e.g. doing a web search), although I find it has to be combined with other methods, e.g. interviews, to generate actionable results.

    Questions for the panel:
    – Are there any “alternative” uses of eyetracking they've come up with? e.g. it can be very useful in engaging observers by bouncing the attention focus on the screen.
    – I'd also like experts take on “budget”/remote eyetracking apps like gazehawk. Eyetracking via a regular web cam … whats your take?

  5. Jen
    Nov 08, 2010

    Usertesting: I'd like to know how this is different from an “expert review.” That they tell prospective reviewers not to expect more than 10 tests per week suggests they feel that 10 tests per week is acceptable for recruits. Normally we screen so recruits aren't so savvy to the testing methodology. What is Darrell's response to this?

    As for eye tracking. Let the pies fly!

  6. Tim Cederman-Haysom
    Nov 09, 2010

    I think eye-tracking should be discussed as yet another UX tool – not as a stark alternative. What are the things that eye-tracking excels at? What can't it do well? No need to frame it as a “us vs them” methodology.

    Also, for, I'm intrigued to know if they have any plans to help people make sense of their data more? It's already providing a low-cost “anyone-can-do-it” approach to user-testing, but it remains entirely up to the user to make sense of the results.

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