Heuristic Evaluation - OpenIDEO
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Heuristic Evaluation
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Evaluators: Ronnie Jakobsen, Meredith Hitchcock, Ivan Buchanan
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Date: 4/7/2014
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System: OpenIDEO
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NumberHeuristicLocationDescriptionSeverity (0-4)Possible Fix
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1Flexibility and efficiency of useOpenIDEO.comIf you have OpenIDEO save your login information, it takes you to generic main page. The page doesn't distinguish between those who are logged in and those who aren't.3-Take them to a personal dashboard or their profile page, where the design quotient is displayed; this would add some pressure to contribute and let them easily see whether they've gotten recent points.
-Allow users to specify which page they want to land on
-If they participated in a challenge in the last session, take them there by default
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2User control and freedomForumThe forum is hosted on an entirely different site, and it takes you away from the OpenIDEO navigation. When you click on "Forums" it takes you to another site in the same tab. If you do anything on the forum, you'll have to re-open OpenIDEO or click back multiple times in the browser to get back to the main site. It's the only tab like this.4-Open the forum in a new tab
-Integrate the forum into the site
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3User control and freedomProfileIt's unclear what information I enter in my profile is public, and what's private. An email address is required and seems to be publicly visible, which is a privacy concern.4-Add icons or text to indicate which elements in the profile will be visible to whom
-Make email addresses private by default, with an option to make it visible
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4Aesthetic and minimalistic designUniversalSite is not mobile-optimized. With the availability and ease of use of resources such as bootstrap, there is no excuse behind not having a mobile-ready environment. Mobile visitors need to zoom-in to read and simple tasks such as login in or signing up are painful on these devices with the effect of possibly interfering with the community's growth4-Bootstrap, mobile css classes on current page layout/design
-Make a basic mobile version that has some info and encourages people to go to the desktop version
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5Visibility of system status / Aesthetic and minimalist design / Consistency and standardsUniversalHeadlines are for the most part small and grey. This means that they don't catch the attention of the user although the information they are trying to convey is very important for where you are and what's going on. The page titles appear different places (inside / outside of content box) and have different font families, capitalization and sizes.4Make a clear headline hierarchy where h1 demands the most attention. Use the hierarchy consistently throughout the site.
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5Help and documentationChallengesThere's no context; how long ago did the closed challenges run? Active and inactive challenges are weighted equally. The page has only the progress of the challenges, it doesn't include information about how long they are or whether you can still contribute.3-Add a countdown to show how many days are left
-Add a "Contribute" button and/or highlight open challenges in a different color
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6Visibility of system statusAll pagesThere's no indication of which page you're on (Community, How it works, etc.) in the menu.3-Add an arrow above the tab you're on
-Change the color of the page in the menu when you're on it
-Color code the tabs, match the logos in color to particular tabs
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7Recognition rather than recallAdd your contribution pageWhat's a mission? Also, you have to associate your contribution with a mission, but there's no obvious place to get more information about the mission. You have to click on a radio box to get more information, which may stump some early users.3-Add tooltips next to the missions
-Turn the mission names into links
-Provide a list of linked missions that will open in a new tab or a lightbox
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8Recognition rather than recallChallenges ListThe Challenges section is full of text. It can be painful for some users to have that much to read without any quick visual aids that relate to each challenge. 3Add an option so that each challenge can have its own image that is related to the challenge.
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9Help and documentationUniversalOnce you sign in, there is not documentation on how to navigate the site, leaving users in a position in which they have to dedicate extra time just to make that first contribution and engage in the site. This effort requirement can discourage many users from using the platform or coming back to it3Upon user sign-up, guide the user through the process of finding a challenge and contributing to it.
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10Flexibility and efficiency of useChallenges ListThe Challenges section is just a list of challenges sorted in a way that is not very apparent to the user. Add acknowledgement to the user of how list is sorted, add options to sort/filter based on user's interest to avoid need to scroll all the way2Add filters/sorting options to challenge list page
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11Consistency and standardsIndividual challenge page - Research and Ideas pagesThe button if it's in the research phase is different than if it's in the Ideas phase. It says "Add your contribution" vs. "Add your idea."2Use a consistent button to contribute across each stage of the challenge
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12Recognition rather than recallUniversalFrom any visiting user, Open IDEO's initial primary objective is to have the user either: 1) sign-up/login or 2) access and browse the challenges. There is no clear visual distinction on the links to these areas so that the user is pointed easily in the correct direction to make the best use of the platform2Login seems to be somehow highlighted, but Sign Up isn't. Any user needs to first Sign Up before he/she can log in. Highlight the Sign Up and Challenges links through css (colors, fonts, backgrounds, etc)
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13Recognition rather than recallSearch bar (all pages)It's unclear what types of things the user can/should be searching for.2Add prompt text in the search box
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14Help and documentationSpecific challenge pageAs a new user I am thrown into an immense amount of text and buttons. The visual hierary is messy so it is ard for me to get an overview of where to start. I feel like I need some help/documentation/tutorial on what to do.2I think it would be helpful to develop a clear template for how a specific page should look prioritizing and ordering content by placement, size and color.
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15Flexibility and efficiency of useForumsForum user profiles don't allow access to OpenIDEO's user profile system (where points/info/participation is displayed). Linking the user profiles in both platforms could help improve interactions and entice users to participate more in challenges.2-Link forum profiles to OpenIDEO's profiles
-Integrate Forum and Community completely within the site
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16Consistency and standardsSpecific challenge pageI'm finding it difficult to relate this page to a certain genre. It is many things at once. Things generally don't have titles making it time consuming to figure out what is what, e.g. sorting and posts.2This may be a result of the site trying to do something new: a platform for open innovation. The content categories could be clearly labeled and separated for an easier overview though.
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17Aesthetic and minimalist deignIndividual challenge pageThe "Follow this challenge" button is buried near the challenge's title, and is somewhat hard to spot1-Move it and the social media buttons up a little higher
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18Consistency and standardsIndividual challenge pagesThe "Follow this challenge" button takes you to a page thanking you for joining the challenge, and then saying "Join the challenge." This doesn't match what the initial button suggests you'll do. It would look more like a way to stay up to date on updates, an idea reinforced by its adjacency to social media buttons1Update button to "Join this challenge"
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19Consistency and standardsChallenge page"Check out contributions" button is blue, should match the color of the challenge phase (e.g., orange for Research).1Make the colors match
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20Help and documentationAny individual challenge page not yet started (e.g., "Applause")There's an activity feed and text about what this phase will be. While there are dates up top, it would help to also verbally direct users to the parts of the challenge already running1-Add text directing them to the phase of the challenge currently in progress.
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21Consistency and standardsUniversalSome of the users' profile pictures have a little pink 'OpenIDEO team' badge. This makes it obvious that the OpenIDEO team members make up a considerable amount of the active users on the site. These badges seem to be inconsistent across picture sizes though, so sometimes you see them and sometimes you don't.1Transparency about who is being paid to contribute is a good thing in the first place. The badge thing seems like a Band-Aid solution which hasn't been deployed properly. Consistency on this initiative would be a good start.
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22Consistency and standards, Aesthetic and minimalist designRoot site, Challenges ListChallenge highlight question or sentence lacks enough distinction from the rest of the text (currently only font size is changed), which might make it difficult for novice users to easily browse the site. 2Separate highlight question/sentence from description, add visual elements to highlight further, ease visual experience
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Flexibility and efficiency of use3
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User control and freedom2
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Aesthetic and minimalistic design1
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Help and documentation4
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Visibility of system status2
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Recognition rather than recall4
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Consistency and standards6
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