Some good UX books you should read
Posted on September 24, 2014
Books about design and development in 2014!?
Yes! Apart from blogs, video tutorials and Twitter accounts you can still learn lots of great stuff about UX design by reading a book printed on paper.
Here are my favorite books I think you should read!
The A Book Apart Series
A Book Apart (@abookapart) is not a single book. It’s a series about everything related to web, from HTML markup to content strategy. I’ve (almost) read all of them and they are by far the best books to read if you are working with websites in any way.
The series cover the following:
- The new stuff in HTML5
- The new stuff in CSS3
- Advice for your content strategy and mobile content strategy
- Advice for working as a designer and dealing with clients
- How to trigger certain emotions in a user
- How to write great CSS with SASS
- How to design great typography
- How to do research for backing up your design
- Everything code related to responsive web design
- Everything not code related to mobile first
My very first course book, from when I started studying interaction design in 2008, and it still holds up today! The book contains lots and lots of GUI patterns divided into different categories such as navigation, organizing content and getting user input.
For each patter it is described what it is, when it should be used, why it’s good and how to implement it along with some examples.
It’s a book you should have nearby while working with GUI design, even if you’re an experienced designer.
Interaction Design: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction
This book is a beast, in both good and bad ways. It covers and goes into great depth about everything you must know and more about interaction design. It’s great as a tool when actively working with something like putting together a questionnaire. But it’s not something you read from cover to cover during a weekend.
The book covers lots of subjects, some of them being:
- What interaction design is
- What triggers our emotions
- Different types of interfaces
- Different ways of prototyping
- Different ways of gathering data
- How to analyze and present gathered data
- How to perform usability testing
- How to establish requirements
Rocket Surgery Made Easy
Are you a major newbie when it comes usability testing? Or are you a total pro? Perhaps the culture in your company is hesitant towards usability testing? Or maybe it’s something you do on a regular basis?
Either way, this book is a must read! Steve krug (@skrug) will teach you the basics of usability testing or improve your skills further. He’ll also help you make usability testing an obligatory part of your company’s design process and improve it for the future.
Included in the book are also handy preparation checklists, templates for non-disclosure, tips for icebreaker questions and why you always should bring delicious snacks to your testing session.
Don’t Make Me Think, Revisited
Don’t Make Me Think, which is also written by Steve Krug, is a classic book on web usability so chances are you’ve already read it.
The book brings up the following:
- Why you should design for scanning, not reading
- Why accessibility is important
- Why navigation is especially important to get right
- How to write for the web
- How users actually behave on the web
- How to perform time and cost efficient usability testing
Note: I’ve only read the first edition that didn’t bring up mobile usability. But it’s a good guess this edition is even more awesome than the first.
The Mobile Book
Smashing Magazine (@smashingmag) is perhaps the best resource for articles on UX and web development on the Internet these days. This book contains new material on everything important about apps and websites that will be used on mobile devices.
The book will teach you the following:
- What’s going on in the mobile industry today
- What the future of mobile probably will hold
- Patterns for responsive web design
- Patterns for mobile UX design
- How to design for iOS, Android and Windows Phone
- How to achieve great performance on website
- How to design for gestures and touch
These are my favorite books about UX and web development. Did a miss your favorite book? Let me know in the comment section below which one it is and why everyone should read it.