User Experience Books from 2003

Every year there are more user experience books than I have time to read. This list includes both books I've read, and books I hope to. If I missed a book (published in 2003) that you think I should include, drop a line in the comments and I'll add it.

  • Universal Principles of Design

    Condensed design wisdom for capital 'D' Design. Outstanding.

  • Funology: From Usability to Enjoyment (pricy)

    Seminal collection of HCI/Engagement thinking. The academic reference for peeps who want more than "good experience needs to be engaging" platitudes.

  • Emotional Design

    In May 2002, Don Norman posted to CHI-WEB looking for beautiful and usable designs. A year and half later, this book brings together his thinking about the importance of emotion in design. Destined to be a classic, and hopefully help drag the old skool "ugly boxes everywhere - but it works" HCI crowd into the 21st century.

  • Information Architecture for Designers

    I like Peter's book. It's visual in a way that other IA books aren't, and that connects to a certain crowd in a way that another chapter on facets just won't. Recommended for quick illustrations of IA to others.

  • About Face 2.0: The Essentials of Interaction Design

    Alan Cooper enlisted Robert Reimann's help with this sequel. It's a good overview of Cooper's process, but leaves out a lot of detail that I wished was there, particularly about persona creation. Still very useful as an introduction to interaction design, and a reference for particular situations. Most of the examples focus on application development. If you've read About Face 1.0, you'll find some repetition, but there's enough new material, and updated past material to make it worth the money.

  • Paper Prototyping

    Carolyn Snyder takes her years of experience with paper prototyping, and makes them available here. Very cool. I'm still not convinced that the effort to make complicated paper widgets to simulate interaction is worth it for most web sites. Where paper prototyping rocks is in managing expectations - seeing polished mockups or even clickable wireframes can give the illusion that the project is farther along than it is. If you deal with people thinking the project is ready to launch after seeing a design comp, paper prototyping is just the ticket.

  • Observing the User Experience

    Adaptive Path's Mike Kuniavsky brings together a lot of thinking on user research, with a lot of attention to usability testing, rounded out with other common techniques, from focus groups to ethnography. Solid how-to advice can provide a platform for actually going out and actually studying users.

  • Design Research : Methods and Perspectives

    Brenda Laurel brings together a stellar cast to cover a wide range of design research methods and issues. With any edited volume, the quality varies with each chapter - but overall it's very very good.

  • Persuasive Technology: Using Computers to Change What We Think and Do

    This book is important. Credibility and persuasion are going to become increasingly recognized issues in developing interactive products, and user experience people will be on the front lines of the debate.