How Airbnb Evolved To Focus On Social Rather Than Searches - Cliff Kuang via Co.Design
For a couple years, registered Airbnb users have been able to star the properties they browse, and save them to a list. But Gebbia’s team wondered whether just a few tweaks here and there could change engagement, so they changed that star to a heart. To their surprise, engagement went up by a whopping 30%. The star, they realized, was a generic web shorthand and a utilitarian symbol that didn’t carry much weight. The heart, by contrast, was aspirational. “It showed us the potential for something bigger,” Gebbia tells Co.Design. And in particular, it made them think about the subtle limitations of having a search-based service. “You have to have search,” Gebbia says. “But what if you don’t know where you want to go?”
It’s the little things, people.
A fascinating UI concept for getting stuff from device to device.
Basecamp UI Preview
37signals have come up with some very unique although simple user experience patterns that should make using Basecamp easier than ever. Jump into the video at 3 minutes to see a demonstration of how they are allowing for you to easily navigate into a project.
Clever sort of ‘stack’ UX, where content in basecamp is treated as an outline, and clicking on an item — like a to do in a project — creates a new ‘sheet’ for the to do that hovers over the project sheet. Closing the to do exposes the project, and so on.
Need to get access to the beta and find out if 37signals have finally fixed the federated identity bug. I bet they have.
Bret Victor, A Brief Rant on the Future of Interaction Design
- Brian Shih, Reader redesign: Terrible decision, or worst decision?
I think that Google reader now looks like the back of an organic cereal box. Go read all of Brian’s comments.
The UI decisions just don’t seem to make sense. And the integration with Google+ seems to break privacy:
Keep in mind that on top of requiring 3-4 times as many clicks, you also now must +1 a post publicly to share it, even if it’s shared to a private circle. That bears repeating. The next time you want to share some sexy halloween costumes with your private set of friends, you first must publicly +1 the post, which means it shows up on your profile, plus wherever the hell G+ decides to use +1 data. So much for building a network around privacy controls.
The frustrating thing is that these pitfalls could have been avoided through a more thought out integration. As Kevin Fox has already pointed out, Google could have easily made it so that sharing was pushed through G+ (therefore giving providing content on G+, and gaining all the benefits of an integration), but also replaced shared items from People You Follow with a Reader-specific Circle.
But no - instead, they’ve ripped out the ability to consume shared items wholesale from the product. The closest analogue might be if Twitter made it so that 3rd party clients could use the Retweet functionality to push Retweets to a user’s stream — but only allowed you to consume Retweets on twitter.com.
It’s almost as if Google wants to demonstrate that, yes, they don’t really get platforms. Instead of improving the G+ API to support Reader as a fully functional 3rd party client (a la Twitter), they’ve instead crippled the product under the guise of improvements.
Steven Poole, Against Chrome: A Manifesto
How can you argue with fly-in-urinal research?