This was originally published on Linked In.
Excerpts from the book, The Best Interface is No Interface.
This is UI:
Navigation, subnavigation, menus, drop-downs, buttons, links, windows, rounded corners, shadowing, error messages, alerts, updates, checkboxes, password fields, search fields, text inputs, radio selections, text areas, hover states, selection states, pressed states, tooltips, banner ads, embedded videos, swipe animations, scrolling, clicking, iconography, colors, lists, slideshows, alt text, badges, notifications, gradients, pop-ups, carousels, OK/Cancel, etc. etc. etc.
This is UX:
People, happiness, solving problems, understanding needs, love, efficiency, entertainment, pleasure, delight, smiles, soul, warmth, personality, joy, satisfaction, gratification, elation, exhilaration, bliss, euphoria, convenience, enchantment, magic, productivity, effectiveness, etc. etc. etc.
Somewhere along the way, we confused the two. And instead of pursuing the best, most creative, inventive, and useful ways to solve a problem, we started solving problems with screens because that was our job description. When we saw problems, we slapped an interface on it. UX stopped being about people, and started being about rounded rectangles and parallax animations.
It’s gotten to the point where many of our greatest minds aren’t being pushed into advancing science or taking us into space; they’re working at the new screen-based megacorporations that have surpassed oil companies in profits and political influence. They’re cranking out glorified digital billboards masked as websites and apps that are trying to monetize your eyeballs by pushing creepy ads onto all of your screens.
In the words of Jeff Hammerbacher, a former manager at Facebook and the founder of Cloudera, “The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads. That sucks.”
"There’s a better path. There’s a better way of thinking. When we separate the two roles, we can start defining new, better experiences."Golden Krishna
User Experience Design != Visual Design