Aaron Brethorst

Round peg in a square hole, rabid generalist.

Ux and UI Design Book Recommendations

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Update: I have split this entry into a full category, which you can find at http://www.brethorsting.com/uidesign/books/. Future updates will end up in this category.

I’ve spent a good deal of time over the years reading books on UI Design, User Experience, bad design, architecture, Accessibility, and a number of other topics. Although I certainly do not claim to be an expert on the subject (try me again in 10 years for that), I know a reasonable amount about Ux. The following list of books comprises some of my personal favorites.

UI Design for Programmers 5 stars This book from former Microsoft Program Manager, Joel Spolsky, covers the basics of good UI design in the least-dry manner I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading. This is a fantastic introductory book on creating a good Ux.

Don’t Make me Think 3 stars I picked up Steve Krug’s book on common-sense web usability a few years ago. It’s quite enjoyable, but I feel like it’s directed at absolute neophytes to both web design and User Experience.

Designing Interfaces 5 Stars Jennifer Tidwell, a UI designer at a major mathematical/scientific software company, has written what is, in my opinion, the book on UI Design Patterns. This book is a fantastic resource for quickly and easily replicating standardized experiences for your software’s user interface. It also doesn’t hurt that Jennifer pulls a number of examples from Visual Studio :-).

Design of Everyday Things 5 Stars Donald Norman’s seminal book on great design in everday life introduced the notion of User Experience to…me, at least. This has been one of my favorite books in this field for as long as I’ve been interested in it. Although this book does not spend the bulk of its time examining software user interfaces, the principles of good design it puts forth are univerally applicable.

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