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Re: Usability research


This looks awesome, Ilya. Really well thought out plan. Let me know what I
can do to help.

On Sun, Jun 6, 2010 at 9:54 AM, Ilya Haykinson <haykinson@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> All,
> I wanted to run the following by you -- this is my proposed approach for
> research for the Maverick cycle. Please comment as soon as possible, as I'd
> like to lock to an approach rather soon.
> Usability Research
> Research is a key value for UMP. To adhere to this value, we will undertake
> one or more research projects with every release cycle, in order to better
> understand our userbase and to improve our products.
> Maverick Cycle Research
> During the Maverick cycle, we will conduct a series of *usability
> interviews* aimed at improving the chapters of our manual devoted to
> operating system installation, and run a *survey* aimed at understanding
> common computer tasks with which users may need some help.
> Usability Interviews
> During the Maverick cycle, our goal for interviews is to understand the
> effectiveness of the installation instructions contained in *Getting
> Started With Ubuntu*. We are trying to answer the following research
> questions:
>    - Are the instructions in our manual sufficiently helpful for new users
>    attempting to install Ubuntu for the first time?
>    - How can we improve our installation instructions for new Ubuntu
>    users?
> More specifically, we will interview users from our target audience and
> observe them as they follow our manual and perform an Ubuntu installation.
> To avoid bias stemming from prior knowledge of Ubuntu (which may skew
> research results), we will attempt to recruit two groups of users: 1) users
> without Ubuntu experience who do not express a desire to switch to Ubuntu,
> and 2) users who have some Ubuntu experience but who do not use Ubuntu as
> their primary operating environment.
> Participants
> We will interview a total of 10 Ubuntu users, most likely in the Los
> Angeles area, for approximately 90 minutes. In order to compensate
> participants for their time, we will run a crowdfunding campaign aimed at
> creating a fund of $600-800 to be distributed amongst the ten participants
> (a common rate for studies). We will video-record each usability session and
> present a summary of the research to UMP. All video recordings and other
> research results will be licensed using CC-BY 3.0 and posted online.
> Timing
> Our team will finalize the design of the usability test by the end of May
> 2010; at this point, we will begin recruiting participants. Recruiting will
> cease by June 6, and usability testing will occur no late than two weeks
> after this deadline.
> SurveysOur survey goal for the cycle is to understand our target
> audience's typical approaches to everyday computing on home desktop or
> personal laptop computers; this way, we can help our team prioritize
> improvements and focus for our documentation products. We will develop and
> administer a survey asking questions related to demographics, technical
> expertise, lifestyle, computer use. Subsequently, we will analyze the
> results in segments after grouping survey responses by operating system
> choice and other factors. We will present research results to UMP.  Could
> this section also include clearly articulated research questions, as the
> first section does? -Bryan Behrenshausen 5/21/10 3:29 PM  Respondents
> We will recruit respondents using multiple channels including direct user
> outreach (craigslist, flyers, etc), email promotion (mailing lists, etc),
> and social media (blogs, Twitter, Facebook, forums, etc). By participating
> in the study, respondents will earn a chance to win $100 delivered via a
> secure payment method (PayPal, Western Union, etc). As the study will be
> crowdfunded, the cost of prize delivery will be subtracted from the prize
> itself.
> Timing
> Agree on course of action
>     June 8
> Finish test design
>     June 22
> Ensure funding
>     June 25
> Recruiting for test
>     June 18 - 25
> Test administration
>     June 26 - 27
> Test results
>     July 4
> Finish survey design
>     July 9
> Survey administration
>     July 10 - 18
> Survey results
>     July 22
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Benjamin Humphrey